Haley Phillips

Briefly describe your applied learning experience: 

I worked as a Communications and Development Intern for Habitat for Humanity of Wake County in Raleigh, NC. My duties included writing articles for the web, newsletters, and annual report; entering donor gifts in Raiser's Edge; preparing and distributing press releases preparing a social media ‘throwback Thursday’ posts for 2015, and creating third-party fundraising event guidelines. 

How did you get involved in this applied learning experience and what did you hope to gain from it?: 

I was searching for an internship with a non-profit, and ran across the Habitat internship on an online search engine. My grandfather was extremely involved in Habitat and highly recommended that I apply. I filled out an application and went through two rounds of interviews to acquire the position.  I knew that I wanted to work in the non-profit sector, and I hoped the experience I could gain at an internship would help to be confident in choosing a career path.

What did you gain from this experience? What was challenging? What did you learn?: 

As a professional, my internship has helped me grow immensely.  It was my first experience in a professional work place and I was able to gain skills such as public speaking, drafting articles to be used in publications, and knowledge of Raisers Edge software system.  I also worked a lot with social media, and learned to view it on a business level rather than a personal level. Learning a variety of new skills, being involved in constructive teamwork, and the ability to work independently have given me the confidence to believe in myself and my skill level. Believing in yourself is a vital part of being successful - having a hands on internship helped me gain the experience that has helped me feel competent and confident in what I do. 

In what way will this experience make you a more viable candidate when you are seeking a job or applying for graduate study?: 

In applying for future jobs, I now have the experience that will help me to land the position.  I would not have been able to learn all that I did if I was in a classroom, such as the working relationships you form with others in the office. I also now have physical artifacts, such as press releases, to show in future interviews to prove my abilities. Employers are usually more concerned with work experience than qualifications, and my internship has served as vital work experience.