Short Summary: Claire is a social media intern with the Digital Media Engagement (DME) team that is part of the Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS) program. Working with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) as an intern has always been something Claire wanted to do, and she is excited to tell us more about her experiences as a social media intern. Some of the topics that were discussed include Claire’s personal engagement with her other social media interns, her daily responsibilities, some of the benefits of being an intern with the VA and Claire’s advice about joining the DME internship for those interested in applying.
Claire Bednarski is a Digital Media Engagement (DME) intern with the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) at the Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS) in a year when everything is completely virtual. Claire is from Cleveland, Ohio, where she is currently a student at The Ohio State University. Her major is international relations and diplomacy with minors in Spanish and public policy. She is planning on graduating in May 2021.
Claire is one of the few people who are directly involved in everything social media at the DME team, where she is also a leader with the Social Media Executive Leader Team (ELT), helping oversee most of the content that is published by other social media interns. A normal day for Claire consists of checking the Trello boards for any cards that need to be moved or updated, making sure her fellow social media interns are regularly using Slack to communicate and meeting the countless deadlines for social media posts that go out every week.
When asked what advice she has for potential social media interns, Claire said, “one of the things you could do is to gain as much [social media] experience as possible prior to joining this internship. This will help new interns decide which department of the VSFS to apply to.” Claire said that social media interns do not always have to stay in one internship role in order to work on different projects from other departments. For instance, she also helps the graphic design team from time to time. In Claire’s opinion, working on projects from different departments looks good on your resume, since many employers are looking for employees with experience outside their field of study or area of expertise. Claire explained that Slack participation is a great way to stay in touch with department heads, meet new interns and make new friends. And weekly reports provide interns with a record of their work that will help them when they are searching for jobs in the future.
Claire thinks you should join the DME internship because of the many unique opportunities interns have at making an impact while working for a federal agency. This will be useful when looking for a job or applying to graduate school.
Writer: Hagen Kenny
Editor: Christine Myers
Graphic Designer: Katie Rahill