I’ve worked in multiple fields and internships trying to find the thing that best fits “me.” Internships were regularly touted as being the perfect answer to that, where students could gain the “real-world” experience of working in a career field and expand their horizons. As the pandemic marched on, however, it proved difficult to find a place where remote working still made you feel a part of the office culture, and where the work didn’t feel like busywork. At the Glen Echo Group, I found everything I was looking for and more.
I spent five months working first as an intern and eventually as a fellow with the Glen Echo Group, learning the trade and getting to experience what it really meant to work in the communications and public policy field. One of my frustrations in the past had been feeling like an intern stuck behind a desk, rather than a genuine contributor learning from an experienced team. Here, every day brought on a new challenge in the form of new writing or research assignments. I learned how to conduct detailed research on various social and media monitoring sites in support of our clients – all ranging from startups to trade associations to Fortune 500 companies! I attended panel discussions touching on fascinating and relevant topics in the tech world, a subject I had always been interested in but had never studied deeply. My voice and contributions felt part of the larger firm's efforts to change the policy landscape surrounding tech, never as just an “intern.”
Working here allowed me to wear several hats, all the while building on my writing, marketing and communications skills. I was frequently encouraged to try working on new projects and with new clients, creating an unparalleled experience as a (then) soon-to-be college graduate. Sitting at home in front of a computer is hardly anyone’s first choice when it comes to joining a new team. But I was so lucky to find such a welcoming environment from the minute I logged on. The people at Glen Echo Group pushed me to be better, to think outside the box and advocate for myself and my ideas. Whether it was attempting to turn around a blog series by translating reports and complicated techspeak or crafting the perfect tweet, I learned how to shape my storytelling capabilities while still holding some autonomy.
It was an incredible feeling to know that the work I was doing was important and had a direct impact on the organization’s wider goals. As I went from intern to fellow, to now an associate, each new role brought a greater understanding of how our digital world shapes our everyday lives, and our roles as communicators in that world. I fell in love with this team, with tech, and most of all, with storytelling as a superpower. Anyone interested in public affairs, forming connections and writing should apply. There is no better place to work and learn from than Glen Echo.