Lauren Rote, Leapfrog’s new Graduate Intern looks at why she chose this route into PR

I joined Leapfrog PR as an intern not long after I graduated from University with a 2:1 in Journalism and Media and Communications. Although I had studied a number of modules in Public Relations, and already had some experience working within the sector from my job while I was at university, I felt that the internship would give me a better understanding of how public relations really worked – outside of my textbooks. It also provided the opportunity to see how working in an agency differed from the in-house work I had done previously.  I had considered doing a Master’s Degree in Public Relations after I had graduated but I decided that the practical experience and the chance to gain industry contacts outweighed the opportunities I would receive from a Master’s Degree.

Being an intern has allowed me to continue to develop the skills I learnt during my degree along with adding new public relations based skills such as learning how to create media lists, how to make cuttings both online and from print and putting together month end trackers and reviews, as well as learning how to manage my time between a number of different accounts.

Being able to learn these new skills in a less pressured environment than being an account executive has also meant that I have been able to grow my confidence in my work as I develop my new skills.

Working for Leapfrog has also pushed me in my personal life in a way which a Master’s Degree wouldn’t. When I started the job I had a 2 hour train journey each morning and the same on the way back, making my working day feel like it lasted 12 hours. It wasn’t long before I decided that I needed to move out of my parents’ home in Birmingham and into somewhere much closer to work. Unlike my time at university I am now living on my own and in charge of how my home is run, and making sure everything is paid on time!

As degrees are becoming more common and many jobs are asking for more experience than just the things you learnt at university, internships are a great way to bridge the gap between student life and working life while helping to build your confidence in the work place. So far I am really enjoying it!