My Internship: Leanne

Month 1 : I'm flying! (Satisfaction 4 / 5)

After a month at CCK, I can honestly say I am definitely enjoying my internship and my role in the team. I am really enjoying the challenges that I am facing, and the new skills I am learning. I already feel a valued part of the team, which is something really nice to experience so quickly.

The internship is what I expected and more. I knew I would be learning new things, being assigned tasks straight away and generally getting stuck into it. It's made me realise I definitely made the right choice in pursuing an internship with CCK. What I didn't expect was how self motivated I need to be, this is both good and bad. It's not something I'm particularly bad at, but I'm glad I have the opportunity to work on it, making sure I can meet the deadlines I set for myself and work on time management.

I think the highlight so far would be being part of something new. Not specific I know, but it is a really good feeling to be involved in such an exciting project, and breaking out from my comfort zone and experiencing new things.

The lowlight of the internship so far would have to be zoho boxes. They never seem to end! And not being able to meet up as often as I would like.

Overall, I'm quite happy with how things have progressed in Month 1. I would like to see more of everyone and hopefully that will happen over the next few weeks, and getting involved in more aspects of CCK. I am really enjoying the internship, and feel that I am learning a lot and developing my skills and abilities.

Month 2 : Out And About (Satisfaction 4 / 5)

Everything is going well with regards to the internship.

In response to the Month One reflective account, I feel that my request for more regular face-to-face meetings has been met. After the initial settling in period, I am happy with the meetings I have had so far and I feel more involved with CCK.

I feel a lot more comfortable with my goals and expectations from the internship, as well as what is expected of me. I am have settled into a good routine with planning and feel I am on the right track.

In Month 2, I went to the London Coffee Festival in Brick Lane which was a really good learning experience. The festival gave me an opportunity to develop my skills as a journalist and to step outside my comfort zone by interviewing people and putting myself out there as a CCK representative, being asked questions in return and managing to sound like I knew a lot!

Together with others, I also attended a theatre performance by Outbox, an all LGB production company from Central School of Speech and Drama. The performance was really good, and I then wrote a review about the show. I found it really interesting to learn more about the LGB community and see a side to things that aren't always broadcasted or apparent to a public eye. I am definitely looking forward to their next production! I also really enjoyed socialising with the team, as it was nice to leave work behind and do something different together.

What has been quite rewarding is seeing people 'like' my articles on the CCK facebook page. It's a good feeling to get recognition and know that people have spent the time to read the articles I have written, and it's worth the time and effort that I put in. It's also rewarding to hear positive feedback from my mentor and editor, as it's reiterating that I am doing something I am good at and it's worthwhile.

After reducing my hours at work, I feel I can progress with the internship to a higher standard and stick to deadlines better, as well as making sure I meet my weekly hour target. I have just organised access to a laptop which I hope will help improve my capability by moving outside of the house to more creative spaces such as libraries and parks, if we get any nice weather! With reduced hours at work and feeling settled in, I hope I can keep improving on my work and my skills set.

Month 3 : Rolling With It (Satisfaction 4 / 5)

I am really enjoying the internship and I feel I am getting a lot out of this experience. I am really looking forward to stepping into the editorial role and contributing to CCK in a slightly different way.

During month three, I was involved in editing for the CMS, including creating metadata and subtitles for over 50 articles. I then worked with Alana on the content for the Quotes and Did You Knows, which we decided to include images with to create a more aesthetically pleasing section. I also worked with Alana and Laura on a new format of 'news bites' as a way of uploading news in a quick and effective way. This has been particularly successful in increasing posts on the WordPress blog as well as getting us ready for the website launch and its news feed feature.

I feel I am doing a good job, and am feeling quite confident in my role within CCK. I am really enjoying the writing side of the internship, but am looking forward to learning more about editorial and gaining further experience in this role. My only concern with my progress during month three is that the communication and feedback between myself and the editor wasn't as constant as I would have liked – there are articles that I have written that unfortunately haven't been published yet as I haven't received any feedback from the editor, and they were time specific pieces.

Month 4 : Excitement! (Satisfaction 4 / 5)

Month four has been very busy and hings are going really well! We have been getting the new website ready for launch, as well as editorial planning and training. It has been really exciting to be so involved in such a big part of CCK's journey, and I feel really pleased with all the work I have been doing with the team. It's been really rewarding to finally get to the launch and I am looking forward to seeing all our hard work go live! I have also been involved in using CCK's social media and am developing my skills in PR and marketing, and although it's only been a small amount I want to develop this further.

I have now been given the dual role of editor/writer and am more involved in editorial responsibilities. I am really excited to progress to the editor role, and am looking forward to building a good working relationship with contributors and developing my skills. After establishing myself as an editor of one contributor, I would like to take on more responsibility and gain more experience as editor, being involved in training new contributors, being their editor and also develop training documents alongside the current editor. I took this internship in the expectation that I would gain equal experience as a writer and editor, so hope I can develop further in both areas. I would also like to develop knowledge in image production, as I have been having some trouble with this and want to make sure I have a well rounded knowledge of all aspects of creating an article.

Month 5: Stepped Up (Satisfaction 4 / 5)

We have now launched the new website! It is very rewarding to see all our hard work from the past few months finally live, and have CCK move forward. After the pressure of making everything ready for the launch, the whole team got a chance to relax a bit and start focusing on other aspects of the CCK enterprise.

My focus turned towards developing my editorial skills - I had already met my first contributor and could now concentrate on moving forward.

Whilst on holiday, a new challenge arose for me for my internship. I received an email from one of our contributors who was unhappy with communication between the editors and himself. Having never had to deal with conflict in such a manner in the workplace, I was unsure of how to approach responding to the contributor and how to react. Through talking to Sonia, we turned this into a learning exercise in team management and to work on personal development. I drafted a response, and worked with Sonia through each point to ensure I had constructed a well rounded, appropriate response.

Although not an ideal situation to have an unhappy contributor, it was actually a really good learning tool for me. I wasn't expecting to deal with issues of this nature during my internship, and am actually quite pleased that I had the opportunity to learn how to cope with these situations as it made the internship more like a regular working environment, and was a reminder that not everything is always so easy!

Now I am back from holiday, I am looking forward to getting stuck into a whole new set of tasks and learning more editorial skills. I have decided to continue my internship further than the initial six months that we had agreed on. I am really enjoying working at CCK, and am not quite ready to stop yet!

Month 6: Final Review

See it here.