Eye-opening and enjoyable internship for DMU Graduate

Journalism graduate Natalie Whitehouse returned to De Montfort for a six-week internship placement, working on the Leicestershire Press.

The 22-year-old, who graduated from DMU with a First Class Honors degree in July last year, applied for the placement through the DMU Graduate Champions scheme, which seeks to find internships for recent graduates from the university, to give them more experience in their field:

“I heard about the scheme when I got a card through the post about it, and applied for it straight away,” Natalie notes, “I was contacted not long after to confirm that my application had been successful, and that I’d actually been given a placement at De Montfort.”

The internship, which began in January and is set to finish next week, has seen Natalie work closely with DMU’s Journalism Centre, where she completed her degree at the university:

“It has been really nice to go back to DMU and work alongside the people who had helped me get my degree. It was good to come back and do something positive for the journalism centre to give them something back for everything they did for me.”

Natalie, who studied English Language and Journalism at DMU, has been working as an Editorial Associate for the Leicestershire Press website, finding positive news stories to help promote and publicise journalism at the university:

“My role is essentially researching recent graduates, finding out what they’re doing and whether they’ve managed to find full time employment, or even an internship like me, in a journalism related capacity.

“If they have, I’ve then contacted them to arrange an interview, and just had a general chat about their role now and how their degree and experience whilst at DMU helped them in landing their jobs.

“It’s been interesting to see how these graduates actually got employed, because most haven’t been the conventional ‘apply online’ way. It gives you hope that there are many ways to get employed, and you need to think outside the box and be proactive!”

The internship has definitely been an eye-opener for Natalie in terms of her own job search, but an enjoyable experience too:

“It’s been really nice getting back into contact with people I had classes with at university. It’s also been great talking to people who I didn’t know whilst I was at DMU, I was wary about approaching people I didn’t know, but they’ve actually all been really helpful and happy to chat about their jobs.”

Since graduating, Natalie has been continuing to work part time whilst gaining extra experience in the hope of securing her dream job herself:

“I have had some interviews for a couple of really great jobs that I never thought I’d get an interview for! But I was told I just needed that little bit extra experience. I’m already involved in quite a few things journalism-wise, and now this internship with DMU is something extra which I hope will make me stand out when applying for jobs.”

Although accepting that it has been tough to find full time employment after university, she is confident that what she has learnt so far will stand her in good stead in the future:

“It’s no surprise that trying to find a job in the journalism industry is tough, but I am and have always been a determined and driven person, and I know if I keep working at it it’ll happen. This internship, alongside my full time job and commitments to other websites, has seen me working six days a week, but I know that it’s all worthwhile experience and I am confident that the hard work will pay off eventually!”

Natalie Whitehouse

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