Updated: Jun 18, 2020
I moved across the country for a summer with just two suitcases. My roommates were girls I have never met and where I spent roughly 8 hours every night was on a blow up air mattress. Our apartment couldn’t figure out how to turn out heat off in the blistering July month and we were always out of toilet paper, but it was definitely worth it.
I tried to pinpoint exactly when I decided to intern in New York for the summer. My earliest recollection was my dad seeing the financial planning graph hanging up on the lilac wall of my childhood bedroom wall in September 2018. I worked so much at school to save up for New York’s infamous rent, that my university’s HR told me I had to stop picking up so many shifts for legal reasons. I started applying to summer internships in November, and tallied that I sent in over 50 applications. The slow process absolutely impacted my wellbeing, to the point that it shocked me when I got offered three internships, and didn’t surprise those who knew me well, that I accepted all of them.
My application process literally took a toll on me. I became obsessed with LinkedIn, and brought my laptop with me everywhere so I could apply to everything in my downtime. I emailed too many random people at companies I longed to work for, and went to tutors multiple times about my cover letter. I will always wonder if I would have gotten these great opportunities if it hadn’t been for how much effort I gave, but I know I don’t regret that time at all. While I’m not sure if I would recommend being as consumed with this as I was, I do think if you are extremely determined to do something, you’ll be able to do it.
My first amazing internship I got offered was the one I am writing for now. Imagine This International Women’s Film Festival has given me weekly opportunities to write about what I love. I’ve been surrounded by women who love film as much as me, and put in a position where I looked up and learned from a powerful mother-daughter duo who are equally dedicated to making an impact through media like I am. Even after my first (political) article I reflected on how lucky I was to be in a job that challenged me and forced me to learn.
Second, I took an internship at a vintage resale shop nestled into a quiet street in Greenpoint called The Break. It scared me at first, I was technically working in the notorious fashion business now. I almost regretted it on my first day, as I thought I stepped into a world based entirely around image, but instead was in one all about love. My boss hosts events that showcase a variety of talent, and she screams with support at every one of them. She makes sure people who all look different from each other will walk her show during New York Fashion Week. I’ve become so attached to each one of my coworkers who remind me everyday how happy I am that I stayed.
I’m currently writing this piece at a desk in Times Square that belongs to my third internship. I’ve spent the last two or so months interning for Billboard in the photo department. The amount that I’ve learned and gratitude that I have every day here feels unreal to me. I worked so hard and felt I completely lucked out with where I ended up this summer.
I’ve been introduced to writing critically about film, seeing how a woman small business is run, and the million things that go into publishing a magazine that you never think about as a reader. But most of all the one most important thing I’ve learned is that if you really work for something, you can get it.