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  • Ellen Miller 12:57 am on December 16, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Final Thoughts 

    I know, I know. School finished already, right? And so did my internship, but I wanted to take a few extra days to gather my thoughts and make this final post worthwhile. My semester was a whirlwind of activity, and not everything always went the way it was supposed to. I think the biggest thing I learned this semester was to be open to change. The content of my internship changed several times throughout the semester, and being flexible enabled me to still enjoy and learn from the experience. (More …)

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  • Ellen Miller 3:33 am on December 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , new year's eve   

    A Last Assignment 

    Several communications from my supervisor later and my last assignment was set: some research about new year’s in D.C. Specific dates have actually been my LEAST favorite events to research during my time at Citysearch. Typically because restaurants are notoriously slow-going in planning events like Thanksgiving dinner. But. Moving on. Turns out that there is a myriad of information out there on New Year’s Eve in D.C. Just google it– you’ll see.

    I’m going to write a final post tomorrow, wrapping up all my work and my experience at Citysearch, but I wanted to drop in some “internship tips” before I headed out. These tips are the benefit of three internships: my knowledge (or the little that I claim to have– I’m not the Intern Queen!) comes from all three.

    1. Be honest with yourself. Don’t take an internship for the prestige. You’ll just end up resenting it.

    2. Push yourself. Use your internship as a learning opportunity, not just an opportunity to network or to gain “real world experience.”

    3. Understand that an internship often involves a lot of useless time. Take a book or some homework, and use it.

    4. Know that even when you make mistakes, even when you make the wrong decision you can learn from it.

    And finally…

    5. Pursue what you love. What you want is the only thing that matters. Yes, it sounds cheesy, but it’s so true. We’ll chat more about this in my last post.
    Best of luck to all applying to internships for the spring!

     
  • Ellen Miller 6:08 pm on December 3, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Comparisons 

    Being at a media organization is, unsurprisingly, completely different than being at a governmental organization. Suffice it to say that my experience at MPD, the Attorney’s Office, and Citysearch have all been unique. I thought I’d use my experience and make you a lil’ list.

    1. At Citysearch, I work at home. So, so different. I’m definitely not used to just pulling myself out of bed in time to long online. Benefits: working from anywhere, avoiding the morning commute, not having to get dressed. Bummers: Not having anyone to talk to all day long.

    2. Workload. Everywhere I have worked has had a different workload. At Citysearch my work depended on whatever I was assigned for the week, and this changed after my supervisor changed.

    3. Communication. Again, working online means communicating virtually, for the most part at least. This leads to a wide variety of situations, particularly those where you are left wondering: is my boss satisfied? Because I can’t tell from that email.

    4. Motivation. Most importantly, it takes a lot of self-effort to work at home all day and to actually get something done. TV, the kitchen, books, the paper I should’ve written last week… it’s all very distracting.

    All in all, I learned something from each and every one of my internships. There are things I am proud of and things I wish I could go back in time and change, but I am grateful for all the opportunities D.C. has afforded me. Just two posts to go, so I’m wrapping it up for you!

     
    • John Charles 6:33 pm on December 10, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Ellen: Good points about working from home. This will become more and more common in the future, so many of us will need to get used to the different working experience it is.

  • Ellen Miller 3:26 pm on December 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Dallas 

    Being my normal, creative self I naturally tried to title this something like “Interning for the D.C. branch of a Los Angeles based company while spending some time home in Texas.” However, as you can see, that got unnecessarily wordy. (More …)

     
    • lara 8:10 pm on December 6, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      such a great list! co co sala is one of my favorite spots in dc : )

  • Ellen Miller 6:02 pm on November 21, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , long distance, organizational change, supervisor   

    Working from Afar 

    As usual, I’m pulling behind on posts, but last week I didn’t have a lot to share as I didn’t end up doing a lot in my internship. Just a recap in case you missed the last post: the company that I am interning for released all of the city editors. What does this mean for me? My boss is now in Los Angeles. While I wasn’t working (in person) with my supervisor in D.C. on a regular basis, I did see her fairly regularly for lunch, and we had constant communication throughout the day via IM and email. (More …)

     
  • Ellen Miller 10:56 pm on November 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    The End? 

    Hello everyone. My sincerest apologies for having not updated in AGES. I know, life right? But this time, life decided it was time for me to make a little lemonade…

    Take one: I was planning to update on Monday, when I received the news. The end-all, be-all news. “Effective immediately, Citysearch is shuttering all editorial operations.” Um… what? Do I not have an internship anymore? What am I supposed to do about the fact that I am receiving academic credit for this internship? How can I possibly get another internship for the semester this late in the game?? All things running through my head. (More …)

     
  • Ellen Miller 11:24 pm on October 14, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Brainstorming 

    For those that don’t remember, my internship is moving into a blog format, and this week I got the (intense) experience of it. Let’s get one thing straight- I am not a talented brainstorm-er. Coming up with new ideas  and proposals is NOT my strength. It takes me a while to mull things over, so coming up with content is hard for me. This week along with coming up with blog ideas I worked on a post about the best places to break up in D.C. Random, perhaps, or so you may think… trust me, I wouldn’t have been assigned it if people weren’t searching for it. Check out the link to read the story. And have any great ideas you’d love to see a blog about? Drop ’em in the comments box.

     
  • Ellen Miller 2:43 pm on October 7, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , ,   

    Lists, and more lists 

    Hello again! Time for that weekly does of Citysearch internship info. The past week has been busy as Citysearch morphes into a new platform– more information on that coming soon. In the meantime, I started working on two new lists for the site. One of the lists is similar to the two lists I have done before because it is a holiday-related list. Let’s take the example of my Halloween list to explain how creating a list works in the Citysearch world. (More …)

     
  • Ellen Miller 3:12 pm on September 30, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , Tweet-Up, Vidal Sassoon   

    All About Events 

    Hello all, and welcome back for week two. I’m full-into my internship now, and I thought I’d share a bit about one of the aspects of Citysearch– events! I’ve now been a part of two major D.C. Citysearch events, and am getting the hang of what it’s all about. (More …)

     
  • Ellen Miller 3:20 am on September 24, 2010 Permalink | Reply  

    Meet Me: Ellen Miller 

    Hello all! My name is Ellen Miller, and I’m a senior here at AU. I study justice in SPA, but this semester I’ve decided to explore my interest in journalism and writing by interning at DC Citysearch. My internship involves writing reviews and lists of restaurants, things to do in the city, and many other areas of interest for true Washingtonians, plus a little bit of event-assisting and possibly planning later on down the road. Although I work at home, I’m very busy because I have many assignments. I’m excited to share my experience with you!

     
    • fblume 3:37 pm on September 27, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Looking forward to hearing more about what you’re doing!

    • Anthony Miller 6:25 pm on September 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I was a professional journalist for a few years, writing for two weeklies, one national paper, and at one point I was credentialed with CNN.
      My advice, based on my experiences as a reporter, on how find the true Washingtonian hot spots is to embed yourself. Dedicate about an hour a week going around and asking people in DC where their favorite spots to eat, hang out, club, sit and read a book. I don’t mean just college students. Ask the people on the metro, the guy playing guitar at the top of the metro stairs, the owners of restaurants, and people on the street. If you do your best to get a good cross section of the population, you will yield incredible results. Now there are definitely problems that can occur: people can be mean, people can be creepy, and people could totally ignore you. But if you let them know you’re working with this journalism organization and you were looking to get their opinions on the DC hot spots, most people will open up as long as you’re clear that they won’t be quoted or referenced.
      Once you embed yourself, you will find the family owned restaurants that help community development, the local businesses that have been around for a hundred years that have been passed down generation to generation, and you’ll find the leisure and reading spots in the city that you didn’t even know existed!

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