A Note From the Post College Intern

Posted by Torrey Ratay in Careers | August 4, 2016

Torrey Ratay

At the end of a four-to-five year stint in college, everyone everywhere wants to know what you are going to do next. It is an endless string of teachers, neighbors, friends, and even strangers, all with the same question that you also ask yourself daily: “What are your plans after you graduate?” Now, it used to be that if you went to college you were almost guaranteed to get a job right out the gate. But now, more and more students are leaving college unsure of their next step, giving that burning question the chance to build up in your head and take on a life of its own. For those of you in this boat, I’m going to offer you my view from the other side, from over the graduation hump; the view of a post grad intern.

As graduation day approached, the hunt was on. My fellow classmates were interviewing left and right and I was beginning to do the same. Position after position would pop up on my screen for jobs that were not quite right. A layout job with very light creativity involved here, a position in a corporation working primarily on brochures there, little with the diverse work and creative acumen that I was envisioning. Of course, the odds of landing those dreamy positions right out of college are slim. We pay our dues, build our resumes and find those jobs in a year or so. Or so I thought.

Another hurdle involved in the job hunt is, “What the heck kind of a place do I want to work for?” I had three internships during my five years of school and they barely scratched the surface of the Graphic Design job field. How are we supposed to know what we want when we haven’t had experience in each? Did I want to be working for an advertising agency or was a design department within a single company more my style? Would I be willing to commit for an indefinite amount of time to just one?

Now, these are the anxious, silly thoughts of a about-to-be graduated millennial. “Just get a job, stupid!” is what I’d tell me if I heard myself whining about having too many options. In this job market that’s a luxury I am grateful to have, but those thoughts don’t just go away. So I decided, let’s do one last internship! It seemed like the perfect answer to my job market dilemma. This time, I wanted to make sure I would be testing out what I thought my dream position and ideal environment would be. A new search began for advertising and design firms in Indianapolis that had work I believed in and a company culture that spoke to me. That’s when I came across Matchbook Creative. Everything about the company seemed like a perfect fit, so I applied, and the rest is history!

So what exactly have I learned from this post grad internship, you’re dying to know? That this is exactly what I want to be doing. That finding a place where you love to come into work is important, and feeling fulfilled in the type of projects you get to work on daily is imperative. That the right internship after you’ve graduated is a perfect way to reinforce what you want out of a full time job. That it’s okay to be a little choosy; you’ll be spending the majority of your day at this place, so you need to make sure it’s the right fit. Being an intern at Matchbook has given me real world experience and the opportunity to make connections with a wonderful Indy-based team. After taking one last internship, I now feel ready to enter the work force, confident that I have the skills and passion for the job.