Dan Rhodes is studying BA Digital Media at Leeds and is currently undertaking a placement year as a Digital Marketing Assistant within the University’s Facilities Directorate. He found his placement through the Leeds Internship Programme, and if you’re interested in doing his role next year, it’s currently being advertised here. Closing date is 25th March.
I am currently on placement as a Digital Marketing Assistant within the Facilities Directorate at the University. The directorate is responsible for areas of the University that you don’t often think about as a student – Estates, Residences, Sustainability Services and the Commercial and Campus Support Services which include the sports facilities (SPA and The Edge), the catering team Great Food at Leeds (GFaL), conferencing (MEETinLEEDS), print (PCB), cleaning and security.
My role includes a wide range of exciting responsibilities for all of these areas. I support the creation and distribution of digital marketing campaigns through email marketing communications, monitoring and updating various social media channels and websites, and producing digital content across a range of mediums.
About my placement
As a student, I only really thought about the academic side of the University and wasn’t fully aware of the breadth of services involved in keeping the University up and running on a day-to-day basis. I took for granted the many GFaL outlets across campus (like The Refectory, PURE, The Edit Room etc), The Edge and SPA facilities available to me, and also the Estates, Security and Cleaning services responsible for the upkeep and wellbeing of campus. Having so many areas to work with and support, it makes my placement and work environment really interesting, fast-paced and exciting!
My role in the Marketing and Communications team sees me traveling all over campus, helping out with video productions, photoshoots, collecting stories for social media and our news pages, and generating original digital content for a whole host of platforms. This has allowed me to not only develop a great work ethic and lots of transferable skills that will be extremely useful going back into my final year (and in later life), but also really make a difference and contribute to the running of the University.
Finding a placement
I was really excited to find a placement on campus that would allow me to experience a real-world working environment whilst staying in Leeds and living in Hyde Park with all the friends I made at University. It really is the best of both worlds!
After seeing the placement advertised online, I made sure my CV and portfolio were polished and up-to-date before filling out the application. The process was very simple and much quicker than I expected. After just a few days of reviewing my application, I was contacted and invited for an interview.
Despite my initial nerves, the interview process was very relaxed and I was immediately put at ease by the friendly manor of my interviewers (and now colleagues). The interview began with a few standard questions, and I was then invited to talk through my portfolio, showing off some of my best work.
My top tips for anyone considering applying for a similar placement would be:
- Take the time to make sure your portfolio is as impactful as possible – You want this to create a lasting impression on the interviewers, setting you apart from the other candidates.
- Make sure you include examples of all your different skills – Most internships are very varied (including this one!) and the more experience you have working across a breadth of different platforms, the better.
- Don’t be afraid to ‘show off’ and sell yourself – You should be proud of your achievements and work and being enthused about the field you’re applying for will leave a great impression.
- And finally, don’t be put off by the interview – It can be really daunting, especially if you have little experience applying for jobs, but it’s really not as scary as it seems. As long as you’re well prepared, just be yourself and you’ll be fine!
I’ve really enjoyed my time on this placement and have made great friends, not only within my team, but across the whole University. It’s helped me to further develop many of my existing skills, as well as providing me with some entirely new ones and I’ll be sad to leave when my internship comes to an end in July.
Want to apply?
If you are interested in a career in digital marketing and communications, you have creative flair and an innovative approach, and you’d like to gain lots of valuable experience working in a fast-paced, fun environment, applications for next year’s Digital Marketing Assistant role are currently open (closing date 25 March 2018). You can find full details about the internship and apply here – http://bit.ly/fddigitaljob.
This year’s campus based internships are currently being advertised; there are 24 opportunities (a mix of summer internships and placement year opportunities) across a range of departments and services at the University. You can view and apply for campus-based opportunities on the main University jobs site here (all these posts begin ‘Campus Internship’).
Applications for some have already closed, with the remainder closing over the next few weeks, so be quick if you’re interested in the campus based opportunities.
In addition to the campus based opportunities, the Leeds Internship programme works with various other employers, locally and nationally, including public, private and third sector organisations to offer a wide range of placements and internships exclusively to University of Leeds students. Register your interest here to be kept updated of new opportunities (scroll down and click “Register interest”).