In this post, CAPA Alumna Savannah Bernard walks us through a day in her life as a study abroad student and intern in London!
I was so fortunate to be able to not only take classes abroad through my CAPA program but also try my hand at a real job through my internship. I am a Journalism major specializing in Strategic Communications at the University of Missouri – Columbia, and I got to test out my skills in the real world. I worked as a public relations and political relations intern at one of London’s leading media agencies, PLMR. I worked around 20 hours a week along with my normal class schedule.
My typical workday would begin around 7:00 a.m. when I would wake up and start getting ready for my day. When I first came to London I would always have a cup of coffee in the morning, but slowly those coffee turned into cups of tea as I spent more time with my British colleagues. I like to take some quiet time in the morning to wake-up, drink my tea, and eat breakfast before I step into the hustle of city life. After I finished getting ready for the morning, around 8:00 or 8:15, I would walk just around the corner to the Tube station. My flat was in a great location with it only being about 5 minutes to the Tube station. I really enjoyed riding the Tube in the morning because it really made me feel like a Londoner, like I really belonged there. It would only be about 30 minutes until I popped out of the Westminster Tube station and walked the couple blocks to my office building. I had the most beautiful walk to and from the office every morning. I would pass by Parliament and Westminster Abbey as I made my way to the office.
I like to get to work early to have time to get set up and not feel rushed before my workday started. My workday would typically start with a quick team meeting with my supervisor, Eve, and fellow team members. I got to do really meaningful work for our clients and work and learn from real people working in the field. I wrote press releases for the school organizations that we represented, as well as pitched journalists new and exciting stories coming out of some of the APPG’s, an All Party Parliamentary Group that our clients were part of. I also got to write several blog posts that were published on the PLMR blog and in other publications as well. My internship kept me on my toes and always learning from Eve and my other team members.
One of my favorite things about my internship was how welcoming the PLMR team members were to me. I always had someone to eat lunch with and on my first day two of my colleagues invited me out to a cool Asian fusion restaurant for our lunch hour. It was a great way to get to know the people I was working with, both in a professional way and as friends. It made me feel more comfortable in my new home and helped me get settled in. I would ask my team members about cool restaurants, museums and things to do in and around London. It was so cool to learn about their lives growing up in the UK, and compare our experiences, stereotypes and questions about each other’s lives. I usually got off of work around 5:30 or 6:00 p.m. and would head back home via the Tube.
After I got home around 6:30 or 6:45 p.m. I would make myself dinner at the flat with all of my roommates as we caught up and talked about our days. All of my roommates were also interning in London, but we all worked in different offices, which allowed us to get to see multiple perspectives of working life in London. Depending on the day, sometimes we would go out and grab a pint after dinner with the other CAPA students. There was a local pub right down the road from us that was so fun to sit and talk and laugh with each other in. I made some of my best friends sitting in that pub, just laughing and talking.
No two days were alike and I was constantly in awe with the city, the people I got to spend my days with, and the work that I got to do. I truthfully loved every second of everyday, whether it was early in the morning sitting with a cup of tea, making phone calls and working hard with my PLMR family, or laughing and chatting with friends in the local pub. London made every day special.
Meet Savannah Bernard, a University of Missouri - School of Journalism student studying Journalism. She studied abroad in London in Spring 2018 and is a CAPA Ambassador this fall.