What Will.I.Am Can Teach Us About Internships

Want to know how Will.I.Am’s recent comments can be used to describe internships? Keep reading!

Guest blog post written by Niki K., a junior English major at the University of Delaware. 

Interested in writing a guest post for the blog? Email Keri at kbetters@udel.edu to learn more! 

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The best and most important thing to do when trying to break into a demanding industry is to do your research. Reading articles and blogs by industry professionals, following the right people on twitter, and knowing who the major players are are all important things to keep in mind. Another thing to try and do is to watch interviews of people you look up to and see how they view whichever industry you’re trying to break into.

That’s exactly what I did recently with regards to the music industry…and it forever changed the way I think about music.

socialmediaTwo of the most popular industries college students want to work in: music and sports. I mean, what’s better and more exciting than entertainment? With fun comes lots of hard work and competition. So, you have to stand out when interviewing at major companies. The importance of social media should not shock anyone anymore. It’s now a key place to find important and influential people and stay updated on what they’re up to. Being someone who’s torn between working within the music or sports industries, I am constantly doing research to try and persuade myself to pick a side. 

And it was Monday night on October 29th that music won (for the moment), all thanks to the Virgin Disruptors live debate.

Now I know what you’re thinking…”What is that?” Those were my exact thoughts when both Scooter Braun and Universal Records tweeted a link telling people to tune in. Having no idea what Virgin Disruptors was (and with nothing else to do), I clicked on the video and 2 hours later, found myself sitting with a piece of paper filled with notes, disappointed at the fact that it was over. I sat and watched a live debate between some of the biggest music industry people including: Scooter Braun, Will.I.Am, Nic Jones from VEVO, other executives from Spotify, and 3 independent artists.

While I was watching, I kept thinking about how a lot of the things they were saying didn’t just apply to the music industry, but to internships, as well.

william

Will.I.Am made a statement claiming the music industry audience has changed drastically because of the new technological advancements. He said the way in which artists make and sell records is not the same as it was 10 or 20 years ago. This concept is also true for internships. The ways in which we as a society look at internships is not the same as our parent’s generation. The concept of working for free is lost on them because internships didn’t exist back in the day and we, as a culture, have adapted to this “new” idea by spending our weekends updating our resumes, making cover letters, and sending application after application to try and get as much experience within a four year span as humanly possible. Money isn’t the important thing to us, the experience is far more beneficial. This is something the whole world is catching onto and we’re going to have to keep adapting to the new rules and regulations with regards to internships.

Scooter Braun, aka manager to the stars, said something so simple yet something that transcends so many industries, it’s no wonder some of the biggest artists in the world trust him: “Everything is easily accessible and that is the biggest change this industry’s undertaken.” Social media controls so many things in this world and this statement couldn’t be more truthful. The reason I love this comment is because it is not focused solely on the music industry, but in fact, can be put into the context of almost any other other industry, as well. Think about it: how many of us have our Twitter profiles locked, or have multiple accounts? Who has changed their name on Facebook or changed their privacy settings when applying to colleges or internships? We all know once something gets out there, we can’t take it back, which is why we try so hard to control how other people see us through our social brands. We don’t want companies to see anything on Twitter or Facebook that might mean we don’t get the job and because everything can be seen by anyone, all a recruiter has to do is type your name into Google and see what pops up. So making sure your online presence is clean is very important with regards to internships.

hire What VEVO Senior Vice President Nic Jones said confirms Scooter’s point: “Users now have the unique opportunity to interact with artists like never before because of this new digital technology.” On one hand this relates to how we can go about finding these internships because companies now use social media to their advantage by posting internship and job openings on Twitter and Facebook, which in turn, expands their outreach. On the other hand, companies are almost required to add more public relations, new media, and digital communications departments to keep up with this new wave of marketing themselves. Our generation will be the ones driving that industry forward, because we grew up with this technology and are the ones who use it the most and are the targets for these companies. We are the consumers that share our everyday lives with the world through Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. Make sure all of your social media outlets project a positive light for yourself and try and make them enhance your resume so these companies have to hire you!

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Keri Betters

Social Media Marketing Intern

University of Delaware Career Services

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