Intern Diary: Balancing work and studies

Happy Monday from a stressed student!

Once more, my name is Andrea and I’m sharing my journey as a Marketing Intern to help others who are thinking of taking on an internship. I’m also trying to track my own journey into the world of tech and of the beginning of my professional life. My first diary entry can be found here if you’re new to my series!

My second week with Artificial Solutions brought a new challenge as a big midterm exam and assignments took over my life! This week has been much more stressful than the last as a result, so I wanted to talk about balancing academic and professional life in this week’s diary entry. 

A Balancing Act

The midterm exam went alright. I think. The test was designed so that it was impossible to finish and one that throws in questions that my professor knew that I didn’t know the answer to, but all in all, I think it went okay.

It’s been a big adjustment to my schedule these past weeks, having to learn to juggle both work and school, but I feel like I’ve been doing alright! I’ve been able to handle the responsibilities of both, and luckily everyone has been very accommodating to my university schedule, so I’m very thankful!

I think that it’s really important to find an internship that has flexibility if you are looking to maintain any kind of balance between work and study. I am not required to go to the office for a set number of hours, so as long as I complete the tasks I have been given, the team are happy with me!  

I was able to complete my SEO tasks efficiently on Monday, finishing up the list of blog posts that had to be optimized, and I was able to concentrate on working on the PPC campaign that the company is launching. This, I learned, is called ‘remarketing’.

To create the ads, I used a graphic design platform called Canva which is a really simple tool to use. You can create all kinds of designs and you don’t need experience to understand how it works. If you are interested in working in social media or in marketing in general, I would recommend that you learn how to use Canva, as you can put it on your CV as a skill.

My other priority during the first couple of days of the week was to get through most of the tasks that I had set on Trello, the platform that the team uses to keep track of each other’s progress and of the upcoming tasks for weeks ahead.

This is another really easy tool to use and it’s really important for the marketing team as we can keep track of our tasks and the progress we make. It’s something else you should check out if you’re just starting out!

I also worked on setting up the social media calendar posts for this week and creating some posts for all our socials, using Buffer to coordinate the schedule on all social media channels which automatically posts them at a set time. So, if you see the scheduled posts this week on LinkedIn, Twitter, or Facebook, you know who is responsible for them! 


Learning from the Best 

Juxtaposing the sleepless nights that I had this week to go over game theory concepts and exercises, I had the very special opportunity to talk to Gavriella Schuster, the Chairwoman of Artificial Solution’s Advisory Board, and a champion for equity and diversity in the workplace, specifically in the tech-sector.  

We had the opportunity to have an insightful discussion on what it’s like to enter the tech industry as a woman. We discussed how it is important to be allies to those around us and uplift others who might need support when entering a professional situation that might not be immediately welcoming.

intern diary

Gavriella shared her experiences of navigating a male-dominated industry, with her journey starting back in the 90s, but also how the situation has worsened over the past decades, and that in actuality the total percentage of women that make up the labor force in the tech sector has actually decreased (I know, I was shocked as well).

This is especially worrisome due to the trend of tech becoming a bigger and bigger part of the world economy and the shift of industries into needing tech roles in their firms.   

We spoke about the importance of International Women’s Day, which is quickly coming up, and ways to honor the women that came before us, but also those that will come after us, and how important it is to create community and sorority in the industry.  

I want to thank her again for taking the time to talk to me, and to thank all the women that are still working on making strides in creating spaces for us to thrive in!  

Gavriella was extremely supportive and gave me lots of advice on how to be successful in the tech-sector and I really hope to be able to work with her in the future.

If you want to connect with Gavriella, you can find her on LinkedIn, here and you can also learn more about her work on her website, here

Read Week 1 of my Intern Diary, here.