Tag Archives: PR Internship

Connecting with Franco

“You can only know where you’re going, if you know where you’ve been.” That saying can have different meanings for people in all walks of life, but it also holds true for those embarking on the job and internship search. As any recent hire from our office will tell you, the job market is all about connecting with businesses and networking with other professionals in the field. And there’s no better way to get to know a company than to immerse yourself in their daily routines and connect with the people who already work there. After all, you can’t know which direction you want to take in your career if you haven’t explored it in the past. Luckily for those entering the job market, there are a multitude of ways to find out more about a potential workplace and find the right career path.

Tour our office with a student group

Touring an office with a large student group, whether it’s classmates or fellow PRSSA members, is a great way to get to know a company, their clients, and of course connecting with employees working in various industries.

My first visit to Franco was on a tour of agencies in Detroit with Michigan State’s PRSSA group. The tour gave me great benchmarks for what agencies in the city were looking for in potential candidates. While I didn’t have the experience Franco was looking for at the time, I was able to build my experience and keep the agency in mind when I started my job search after graduation.

These group tours are often the easiest for companies to accommodate and give you maximum exposure in the shortest amount of time. What’s key about these group opportunities is making sure you stand out. Bring your resume, introduce yourself to the presenters and guides after the tour and don’t forget to thank the busy professionals taking time out of their day to show you around.

Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Franco Senior Account Executive Andrea Kenski talks about a recent Salvation Army campaign with students from Eastern Michigan University PRSSA

Shadow one of our employees

While job shadows can often be the most difficult for companies to accommodate, they can be a great source for building a strong relationship with an employee at a company you’re interested in. It is also the best way to get an understanding of a company’s culture and the services the agency offers to its clients.

In college, it was my job shadow experiences that helped me gain an understanding of the difference between corporate communications, and working at a public relations agency vs. an advertising agency. I not only had the opportunity to start connecting with people, that to this day I’ve maintained relationships with, but it helped me decide what type of communications internships I wanted to pursue further while in school.

One-on-one meetings

Like most people in the communications industry, I LOVE coffee. And I love nothing more than to share my experiences from school and professional life over a good latte. Whether our allegiance is to the green and white or the maize and blue (or any other school around Michigan), my colleagues all come from different backgrounds and have unique life experiences to share with students new to college or even recent graduates. We love to share our lessons learned, where we’ve been, and how we’ve gotten to where we are today.

Connecting with us at a job fair or networking event

As a company trying to attract top talent from schools around Michigan and beyond, we want students to know who we are, just as much as they want us to know them. A great way to get to know more about a company and the people representing it, is to stop by our booth space at a career fair. Whether you’re a freshman or a graduating senior, it makes our job much easier when we’re able to put a face to a name. Make sure you’ve brushed up on your elevator pitch and don’t be afraid to ask questions and check out these three tips for acing job fairs. And, trust me, we do remember you when you make an effort to get to know us!

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish connecting with PRSSA students across Michigan at a recent career fair

Franco Account Executive Erica Swoish shows off some client swag at a recent career fair for PRSSA students across Michigan

If you’re interested in visiting us, meeting one of our Franco team members, or just taking a peek around the office, let us know! You can call our main line or reach out to me directly for details.

Erica Swoish is an account executive and the student relations coordinator at Franco Public Relations Group. You can reach her at (313) 567-5014 or swoish@franco.com. Follow her on Twitter @eswoish.


Santa Claus, Samantha Jones, Olivia Pope… and My Summer Public Relations Internship

First days are filled with different emotions, feelings and thoughts. We’ve all experienced those first day jitters. For me: new experiences and people have always taken me a little longer to adjust because I’m quiet and shy. When I learned I would be starting my public relations internship at Franco Public Relations Group, I didn’t feel those nervous feelings that I usually experience.

I received this opportunity through my best friend’s internship with City Connect and its new program spearheaded by Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, Grow Detroit’s Young Talent GDYT. Many people tell me I waited too long to get a public relations internship, but after this experience, I couldn’t disagree more. When I officially declared my minor in January 2015, there were many internship opportunities for credit, but I wanted an experience. I didn’t want a public relations internship where I was filing papers like some of my friends, or bored all day answering phones; I wanted a real picture of the profession itself and of course the TV lover in me wanted to see if the profession was really as glamorous as portrayed by Samantha Jones  in Sex in the City, or as drama-filled as it is portrayed by Olivia Pope in Scandal.

In my short time, six weeks to be exact, I have learned a lot, acquired skills, and experienced every day operations at a Detroit public relations agency including:

Those traditional public relations fundamentals every public relations intern is exposed to…

  • Media monitoring
  • Clipping news stories from different media outlets
  • Drafting calendar listings
  • Distributing news releases

Then there were the more fun aspects of a public relations internship…

  • Putting together GMRENCEN-branded selfie sticks
  • Creating Coney Island Hard Beer media kits for Powers Distributing
  • Participating in a team leadership assessment activity
  • And of course, becoming one of Santa’s elves for a Salvation Army Christmas in July segment on WDIV-TV.

But before I knew it, my six-week program and my first official public relations internship was coming to an end and I had an experience that none of my friends can say they had.

Little did I know my experience was not over yet. Transforming into one of Santa’s elves must have made a good impression on Santa because on my very last day I was in for a surprise. Mid-way through the day, I was offered an official fall public relations internship with Franco. Of course, I accepted immediately turning what I originally thought to be a short summer internship experience into much more.

Interns Christian, Sasha and Megan transforming into Santa’s elves during The Salvation Army’s Christmas in July TV segment on WDIV- Channel 4 four o’clock news

Interns Christian, Sasha and Megan transforming into Santa’s elves during The Salvation Army’s Christmas in July TV segment on WDIV- Channel 4 four o’clock news

As for exploring whether Samantha Jones and Olivia Pope’s characters really do the public relations profession any justice – I found that every day isn’t filled with celebrities and huge grand openings, and every night isn’t filled with trying to cover up a client’s horrible secret …thankfully.

What was your first internship experience like? I’d love to know.  Share in the comment section below.

Christian Harper is a PR Coordinator for Franco Public Relations Group and Oakland University student. You can reach her at 313-567-5093 or harper@franco.com.