It’s kind of weird writing a post about my journey, because I feel like I still have a ways to go. But it’ll be therapeutic for me to look back on the steps that got me to the point I’m at now—a university graduate, writing for my favorite magazine (SLAM) as an Editorial Assistant, and working at my high school alma mater with my favorite former teacher and office staff… Oh, and I blog, too.
I was a freshman when a Sunday school friend I hadn’t seen in years bumped into me in a stairwell at my university’s student center. She was a senior and asked me what I was interested in pursuing—you know, the usual. At the time, I was considering something in the School of Communication and Information. A little while later, she sent me some info regarding the internship she was finishing up with Ponn Sabra and asked if I’d want to get started with it. I didn’t really know what to do, but I figured it was one of those opportunities everyone was talking so much about and that it’d be dumb to reject it when I definitely had the time to commit.
And so my journey began with Ponn. She taught me the ins and outs of a basic WordPress blog, interacting with readers on the blog itself and elsewhere, timely content, SEO, editing eBooks, and a whole lot more! But most importantly—she taught me the importance of staying genuine. Staying genuine with your content (readers can tell when you write from the heart with passion from when you write fluff to fulfill your weekly posting quota!) as well as with yourself. Ponn taught me it’s okay to say no, which is something I had to tell her recently.
In a phone call that was supposed to situate me in a role with Blogger Babes at the beginning of this year, I had to tell Ponn I would unfortunately not be able to commit any time to this community. Between my monthly and weekly assignments for SLAM and its website, working at my high school alma mater, teaching at a Sunday school, taking a class to further my own knowledge, and you know, sleeping, I couldn’t lie to her and myself about my availability.
It didn’t feel good to say no, but Ponn—being the person that she is—congratulated me. I’ve known her for about four years now, and she helped mold me into who I am today. She helped me focus in on my interests, connect with other bloggers, love Twitter and WordPress, and build up my resume to land an internship and then remain with my favorite mag. Between all the career-oriented self-discovery, shared spiritual learning and development, and the actual work of editing, scheduling, writing, and emailing—I made a great friend, despite having never met her face-to-face.
I want to thank you, Mrs. Ponn Sabra. I had a blast, and know this is in no way the end of our work together, God willing.
At the very least, I’ll be hearing about all the Blogger Babes news and advancements because my replacement recommendation worked out seamlessly. Ponn willingly gave another eager college student the opportunity to work for her: my cousin, best friend, and aspiring professional writer Heba Zaheer.
If given the opportunity, I highly recommend Ponn Sabra as a blogging mentor, coach, consultant, or boss, all roles Ponn played in my life. I think Heidi found her ideal partner to further the Blogger Babes mission.
Blogger Babes’ Mission: To help women bloggers transform their hobby of writing into a profession that lets them live life on their own terms. Ponn did this for me, and I know she can do it for you!
The great news is Ponn, in collaboration with Heidi, is finally writing everything down into practical eGuides, eKits, Kindles, and more, so your journey should not take the long short four years it took me. I edited and formatted their first kindle, Blog Essentials: Finding Your Voice and Living the Blogger Lifestyle, and I assure you it’s a must-have blogger reference book.
Rather than say “Goodbye,” Ponn always taught me to share helpful tips, interesting insights, and leave a post with a Call to Action.
So first, I’ll re-share some tips I wrote in a post four years ago when my initial internship concluded.
4 Tips To Get The Most Out of Your Internship
- Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Staying silent will get you nowhere. Ask what is on your mind, and get clarification to avoid repeating the same tasks over and over again.
- Keep your word. Giving false promises of availability will only hurt your efforts and delay you in projects and progression. Be responsible and punctual with your assignments in order to be efficient.
- Be sincere. While it is work, it should be enjoyable, educational, and fulfilling. Honesty was the method that brought these three feelings to me while working on my projects.
- Intern often. Little did I know that my first internship would lead to another, which would ultimately get me to where I am today. The Good Housekeeping fashion editor’s top advice is to “Intern Often.”
Second, my Call to Action to you is to join the Blogger Babes community. You’ll learn from professional female bloggers committed to your success.
Last, I’m a little curious. Have you ever interned? What were your experiences? Do you have more tips to share? Please let me know!