Summer intern Cami Fannin is a senior majoring in strategic communication at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. After visiting Shedd Aquarium in October 2015, she knew this was an incredible place to be. With a heart for not-for-profits, she decided to apply to the eight-week internship program in the Marketing department. In this first installment of her blog series, “A Day at Shedd,” find out what it’s like to dive into the intern experience.
I am staying in downtown Chicago this summer, so I have the perfect opportunity to walk to Shedd. Half of my walk is through the Loop, enjoying the energy of the morning commute. The last half of my walk is peaceful as I pass the beautiful Buckingham Fountain and walk along Lake Michigan.
While every day is different, as a social media marketing intern, my day usually begins with checking emails before I dive into social media monitoring. I love being able to engage with our Shedd guests online, answering questions and responding to comments. I then read up on the daily news to see if it sparks any ideas for posts.
Most mornings, I typically have a few meetings where I get to know staff members and more about their specific roles. Networking is the most valuable takeaway from my internship, and with Shedd’s friendly staff, it’s easy to do! I also have check-in meetings with my supervisor to review my progress. Then my fellow interns and I enjoy grabbing lunch together on the terrace. I have greatly enjoyed becoming friends with them.
In the afternoon, I complete trainings on different social media software, work on my projects, or attend more meetings. Some weeks I will shadow other staff members to learn about different jobs at Shedd and about Shedd as a whole organization. I view my afternoons as my learning period.
Additionally, Shedd provides many activities for interns, such as networking events, lectures, behind-the-scenes tours and service days. Shedd includes the interns in many projects, making us feel like part of the team.
“I love being able to engage with our Shedd guests online, answering questions and responding to comments.”Cami Fannin, marketing intern
Interning at Shedd is a huge learning experience as you dive in rather than dip your feet in the water. Taking initiative is so important; it’s the best way to grow in the internship. As an intern, my job is to help make my supervisor’s and other team members’ jobs easier. The hard work has amazing payoffs.
Aside from getting to know my colleagues, one of my favorite parts of my day is the ability to explore the aquarium at any time to get to know Shedd better. It reminds me why I am interning here and why I enjoy it so much.
At the end of the day, I reflect on just how lucky I am to be interning with an organization that invests in me. I am passionate about the work Shedd is doing to protect the environment and encourage people to connect with the incredible animals. I’ve always been told to do what I love, and love what I do. I can happily say that Shedd has showed me what I truly want to do in my career, and for that I am beyond thankful.
—Cami Fannin, marketing intern
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