My Internship Experience: Bridget Hartigan
As a communications student at Molloy College, it is required to complete an internship. Last semester, I interned at Harper’s Bazaar Magazine in the editorial beauty department. My mentor from my previous internship at Estee Lauder, Jo Malone referred me to the senior beauty editor of Harper’s Bazaar as a potential candidate for a spring internship. I was positioned in the public relations department within Jo Malone; therefore my mentor has a very close relationship with various magazine editors. The editor then reached out to me and I went through the interview process before I was offered the internship.
I had several goals I wanted to complete during my time at Harper’s Bazaar Magazine. I aimed to achieve better background knowledge on how beauty editors review products and how they take their reviews and build stories around them. I had been on the PR side of beauty before and I was very interested in learning how the editorial side, worked as well. Some of my job duties at the internship were maintaining open communication with PR contacts of various beauty brands, being responsible for product call-ins, and researching upcoming beauty, fitness, and wellness trends for potential stories. Additionally, I managed the retrieval and documentation of incoming products for records, transcribed interviews with industry professionals for upcoming features, and assembled fashion week binders that documented the newest beauty trends from various shows for the upcoming season.
Although I did not obtain a position within Harper’s at the end of the internship, my experience with the company helped to build my resume and add future contacts for networking. My mentor at Harper’s offered advice on a regular basis, specifically stressing the importance of time management. My mentor has strict deadlines to meet and therefore was usually in a time crunch. It was necessary for her to not only manage her time efficiently but to prioritize tasks at hand as well. I believe seeing her manage her time on a day-to-day basis was valuable going forward in my career.
I definitely believe that I now have a better understanding of a beauty editor’s responsibilities and how they contribute to the magazine as a whole. Beforehand I had a glamorized view of how magazines were run. I believed that the women within the company had a very relaxed schedule filled with fashions shows and makeup parties. This view drastically changed after spending time with the editors at Harper’s. To quote my mentor directly, “We are not ladies who lunch.” I loved hearing that from her because I gained more respect for editors. They spend their days buried in market research and trends, not at luxurious lunches. To give advice to students about to start an internship, I believe it is important to always remember to ask questions throughout your time with the company. Do not be afraid to speak up when you are confused or need further explanation. You are new to the industry and to the business, therefore an internship is the perfect opportunity to ask the questions you need to ask to gain a better understanding on how things work.