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School of Business and Management

SBM Student Afia Interns with Queen Mary's Public Relations Team

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Afia Ahmad is a 2nd year BSc Accounting and Management student who is also a wordsmith.  Afia enjoys writing and being creative and it is this interest that led her to her current internship role in PR at Queen Mary.  Afia has kindly taken the time to share her experiences and tips on internships below. 


If you are looking to stand out amongst a pool of applicants for your desired job role, then this article is for you!

I am currently doing an internship with the Public Relations Team at the Queen Mary University of London.

The PR internship opportunity was advertised via Careers and Enterprise. I applied for the internship and was invited to attend an assessment day/interview. Luckily, I was successful and started my internship in November 2018.

Previously, I worked in the production team. A question I get asked quite a lot is why I work in PR when I’m an accounting student? Some of you might be wondering the same now! Well my answer is simple – experience! I have learned how to build a professional network, which is essential when you step into any workplace. It has taught me the importance of having good communication skills, which are essential if you are working within a team or individually with a client. Being a student, you often don’t realise what it feels like to be in a desk space and work where you need to consult other colleagues back and forth, but PR has taught me what is required of me when I am professionally committed. It gives you a sense of ownership and a joy every time you are successful in achieving your goals.

I am learning how to maintain a healthy balance between working and studying, which would come in handy when I will work and study towards professional accounting qualifications. My learning experience in PR was one of the main reasons why I felt confident to apply for another work experience opportunity with ACCA.

This internship has taught me transferable skills, which will help me in any workplace, regardless of which field I work for – it’s the experience that counts!

Here are a few tips for students who are looking for internships:

  1. Expand your professional network. (Stay active on LinkedIn and attend networking events)
  2. Don’t go for the best employers and paid work experience ONLY. (Take baby steps!)
  3. Apply for Spring Week opportunities, it increases your chances of getting a summer internship!
  4. READ the emails sent from SBM Careers and Enterprise Service – TARGETjobs, Bright Network, Indeed, RateMyPlacement advertises internship throughout the year.
  5. Tailor your CV! (Research the company, showcase their values & key skills needed for the role)