On Interning For Island Press: An Enriching Experience

After graduating college with a BA in Communications I wasn’t exactly sure what to do with myself. Having no luck with finding immediate employment I decided to try out some internships to pick up some experience and references. That was when I came across Island Press. I began my internship at Island Press having never worked in publishing before and having no idea what to expect. For the weeks leading up the internship I simply told people I would be doing social media for the company. This turned out to be a tiny fraction of the work that I performed for Island Press.

During my time at the organization I worked on projects as varied as designing images for Island Press events, compiling lists of college hiking clubs for use by authors and contacting past interns for a blog post about what they had done since their time with Island Press. I gained valuable insight into the processes of marketing in a publishing company and for a non-profit.

One particularly memorable incident was the day myself and a small group of Islanders travelled to Capitol Hill in order to hand out copies of The Cartoon Guide to Climate Change to freshmen members of Congress (You can read more about that here). One of whom later introduced a bill intended to dissolve the EPA, which I hope was not a result of our influence. I also got to assist with Island Press’ Urban Resilience Project by posting URP articles to the blog and helping to organize the URP master list of contacts. I learned a lot about important issues regarding cities.

I definitely felt welcomed as a member of the Island Press team. I attended several meetings which gave me an inside look at the inner workings of the company. Of particular interest to me were the IP 101 meetings during which I was able to get an idea of what each department did and how they fit into the overall structure of Island Press.

I gained a familiarity with the Drupal website platform as well as some knowledge of Photoshop during my time here. These are valuable skills that I hope will help me in my future search for a career. Of all the internships I have done Island Press was probably the most engaging and interesting. I was assigned a variety of different projects rather than focusing on one task.

I came into this internship not sure what sort of career I wanted to pursue. I had some parameters like that I wanted to work in marketing but I wasn’t sure where I’d want to be placed. After my time at Island Press I’ve decided that work in the publishing industry would be ideal. I’ve gained insight into how marketing for a publishing company operates and found it to be very enriching work. As I set off in search of a career I will be significantly influenced by my time at Island Press.