Hidden Talents

Getting Down to Business with the OPRF Chamber

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Print

By Cathy Yen

Executive Director OPRF Chamber of Commerce

If you are on the Chamber's email list, you undoubtedly have received one of our promotional emails.  Filled with images, colors and fancy print, these "eblasts" or "email marketing campaigns" take time to create and send.  How do we do it with our very small staff?

Interns.

We have hosted six students over the past four years from Concordia University's Graphics Design and Art Departments.  As part of their curriculum, students can choose to work at a local business to gain skills and insight into their chosen field.  Students work onsite for twelve hours a week for a semester while remaining under the close supervision of their professors.

At the Chamber, we offer the opportunity to learn our graphics-heavy email marketing software, construct newspaper ads, create art for social media and design various flyers or other marketing collateral we may need.  We have found our interns to be diligent, creative, hard-working and eager to learn.  They are productive and a pleasure to be around.

At the same time, we give them real work that adds value to us and to them.  The stereotype of sending an intern on the daily coffee run or having the intern make copies and stuff envelopes all day just doesn't hold water in today's environment.  Taking on an intern is a responsibility.  Sure, you get some great work out of them, but you need to provide resume-worthy real world tasks and mentorship in return.  It is a true partnership between the organization and the university.

Flexibility also is key.  Each of the six interns we have had the pleasure to know is a real person, with different strengths, different work habits, different career goals.  As a mentor, you must be willing to adapt and change things up as needed to create the best possible experience for each student.

This past weekend, we celebrated three of our Concordia interns at their Senior Art Show.  The artwork on display showcased their real talents, humbling our little eBlasts to be sure.  Even so, I was proud that our Chamber had a small role in the education of these fine young people of our community.

Contact:
Email: cyen@oprfchamber.org Twitter: @OPRFChamber

Love the Journal?

Become our partner in independent community journalism

Thanks for turning to Wednesday Journal and OakPark.com. We love our thousands of digital-only readers. Now though we're asking you to partner up in paying for our reporters and photographers who report this news. It had to happen, right?

On the plus side, we're giving you a simple way, and a better reason, to join in. We're now a non-profit -- Growing Community Media -- so your donation is tax deductible. And signing up for a monthly donation, or making a one-time donation, is fast and easy.

No threats from us. The news will be here. No paywalls or article countdowns. We're counting on an exquisite mix of civic enlightenment and mild shaming. Sort of like public radio.

Claim your bragging rights. Become a digital member.

Donate Now

Reader Comments

No Comments - Add Your Comment

Note: This page requires you to login with Facebook to comment.

Comment Policy

Facebook Connect

Answer Book 2019

To view the full print edition of the Wednesday Journal 2019 Answer Book, please click here.

Quick Links

Sign-up to get the latest news updates for Oak Park and River Forest.


            
SubscribeClassified
MultimediaContact us
Submit Letter To The Editor
Place a Classified Ad

Latest Comments