Before working with JW Meeting Solutions, I pictured a “college internship” as a coffee jockey, stressed, running around like a chicken with it’s head cut off, trying to complete work everyone gives the intern because they don’t feel like doing it. However, being an intern for JW Meeting Solutions completely shattered that image and replaced it with something incredible. My summer as an intern was an unforgettably positive experience that will truly benefit me for the rest of my career. The skills I learned, the philosophies I gained, and the fun I had along the way have all set me up for success.
Although it would be impossible to detail all of the lessons I learned as an intern, here is a glimpse into the life of an intern at JW Meeting Solutions:
Some of my favorite intern moments were attending local Reno events during our regular work days. While attending Hot August Nights, The Great Reno Balloon Races, or the Nugget Rib Cook-Off during the work day may seem like an excuse to eat delicious ribs (...which they definitely were delicious), there are many things to be learned from attending a wide variety of events.
Regular event attendance with JW Meeting Solutions trained me to think of every event from a planner’s perspective. I was taught to instinctively analyze the details of events and evaluate whether they are successful or need improvement. For example: How could the flow of foot traffic been better managed? Where could a sign be placed for more directional clarity? Are there enough trash cans? I can’t stop myself from asking myself these questions, and I am certain I am a better planner because of it.
I am an elected event coordinator for my sorority, planning a retreat for roughly 200 women each semester. Until my internship with JW Meeting Solutions, this position and the responsibility attached caused me a great deal of stress and uncertainty. However, my new skills allow me to love event planning and enjoy the crazy process (instead of dreading it).
My current event planning adventure is going very smoothly, being bigger and better than ever before. I attribute this success to my internship experiences such as assisting in onsite registration, going on a site inspection, and attending meetings with clients to assess needs and options. Knowing the right questions to ask and the details to consider have helped my planning skills immensely, and I can’t wait to see where my new skills take me in the future.
My position as an intern not only taught me the value of being a meticulous planner, but I also came to understand the value of being an approachable and compassionate professional. JW Meeting Solutions fosters incredible client relationships and the company places a strong emphasis on connecting with others on a personal level. Attention to detail is vital to maintaining a positive relationship: remembering names, hobbies, favorite foods, and past conversations can make all the difference and set your company and personal image apart from the crowd.
I remember one day I was driving home from a day of interning and decided to suddenly stop at the store to get a box of thank-you cards. I now keep a few blank thank-you cards in the center console of my car, an item I never thought would become an essential! I do this because I never know when I’ll need to thank a client interviewer for their time. This was absolutely inspired by Julia, who never forgets to thank the incredible people she works with.
I learned that working as an event planner, or in any profession for that matter, is so much more than making money and meeting deadlines. It is also about connecting with people in meaningful ways and projecting positive energy into all the work you do. Relationships as a central focus in the workplace can truly make a difference in the quality of work and the happiness of all who are involved.
WORKING HARD AND PLAYING HARDER
One of the biggest takeaways I have from this internship is a philosophy I believe I will carry with me through the rest of my professional career. Event planning is known to be one of the most stressful professions, period. Knowing this, I was pretty timid when venturing into this field of work. JW Meeting Solutions has taught me that a work-life balance is essential when working in a career that can oftentimes be overwhelming.
As a student who is graduating early from college, the “working hard” part of the philosophy comes natural to me. I have been known to beat myself into the ground with work and accomplishing tasks, and in my collegiate career I often forget to take time to enjoy myself and the people in front of me.
The JW Meeting Solutions mantra of #WorkHardPlayHarder has helped my change my mindset from “working hard” to “working hard so I can play harder” and it has made a huge difference in my quality of life and has lowered my stress levels immensely. I now take more time for things I enjoy, or even work to combine them with my regular routine. It is empowering to balance hard work with hobbies, and I believe this philosophy and the empowerment that came with it has made me a better worker in addition to being a happier person.
Never in my wildest dreams would I have thought a professional internship would have taught me to be less stressed, but I am so grateful that it did!
There are many great things to be said about my summer internship with JW Meeting Solutions, however, I can sum it up by simply stating that this internship has completely altered my view on my future career and myself as a professional. Being a full-time student did not allow for me to build confidence as a professional adult. Before my internship, I had relatively low confidence in my potential as a professional. Working with JW Meeting Solutions has crafted me into a detail-oriented, compassionate, and balanced worker with a newfound sense of confidence in her abilities to take on the world after graduation in May!
Thank you to the incredible JW Meeting Solutions team for this opportunity and experience. This internship was...
JW Meeting Solutions is a full service meeting and event management company.
We specialize in the management of conferences and events of all shapes and sizes, across a broad spectrum of arenas; from medical, educational, business and scientific to government and association.
We’re practiced in finding solutions to any challenge to create an event experience with a difference.
Our passion is to create exceptional educational programs and meetings that engage, educate, and foster attendee affinity with the mission and vision of our partner organizations.