Intern Corner: Dani Velasco

This summer was filled with memorable “first times.” It was the first time I have ever lived walking distance to the Lincoln Memorial and the National Mall, the first time my place of employment had a fully stocked snack room, and the first time I had the privilege of staying in a hotel room alone (don’t worry, I didn’t go overboard on room service).

I vividly remember almost every work day since the inception of my internship because this summer was a big deal for me. Months before I received my internship offer, I made it a personal goal to earn a spot in a well-known, respectable organization that based their work on a strong mission statement and strived to actually make a difference in the world. I spent countless hours applying to competitive internships that successfully merged passion and action together to create a legacy, but I always had my eyes set on PBS. As a student majoring in Communications & Women’s studies, it was important for me to intern somewhere that embodied everything I’ve studied and put theories to use. Somewhere I could soak up more knowledge on the industry and where I could work closely to mentors and role models (most of them women), who want what’s best for me and for the future of this country. Somewhere like PBS.

Dani3Although I received numerous internship offers, my persistence paid off when I received an offer to work for the Development Services department for the summer at PBS. As a Miami native, this meant moving “up north” to the Virginia/DC area and commuting to work on public transportation every day.

During my summer tenure I had the pleasure of working on numerous weekly and daily projects including organizing and consolidating content for the bi-weekly “Development Services Spotlight,” which highlighted new and ongoing projects each area in Development Services was working on. I also drafted and created daily tweets to update followers on any new content our department created. My biggest ongoing project of the summer was designing and creating customizable one-sheets that local stations would be able to use as marketing assets to gain local sponsorships. I was able to put my creativity to use as I designed numerous one-sheets and researched statistics to go along with the information. It felt like a full-circle experience working on PBS KIDS one-sheets because I used to watch these shows when I was younger, and now I was working to have them continue being aired.

Before I started my internship, I considered myself a detail-oriented person, but as summer progressed I became a detail-oriented fanatic! Every period, comma, exclamation point and margin was aligned with the vision I had for that specific one-sheet. Every time I thought I was finished with a one-sheet, my team would review it and send me back to the drawing board. They knew my potential as an intern, and I took great pride in knowing I was being held to the utmost standards and that my work would be used nationally. This process proved to enhance transferrable skills and not only made me a better communicator, but it taught me that success is in the details.

I did a lot of really cool things this summer. I got to see Gwen Ifill and Ari Shapiro speak in person. I got to have breakfast with our President and CEO Paula Kerger. I toured NPR, as well as the PBS NewsHour set at WETA, I was able to attend one of the biggest public media and development conferences in this industry in Boston, and I was able to meet bright interns from all over the country. But most importantly-this summer was one of personal and professional growth. The ability to balance work, establish meaningful relationships with those around me, and gain confidence in my professional life is something I hope everyone has the ability to do. I feel extremely honored that I was able to work with a team and a department that so flawlessly balanced and executed the “work hard, play hard” mentality and that takes pride in the work that they do. I wanted to Be More, and working with PBS has done that for me.

Written by Dani Velasco  |  2016 PBS Intern

4 thoughts on “Intern Corner: Dani Velasco

  1. Michi Diaz Reply

    Dear Dani, So proud and happy for you! This is amazing and I am happy that your perseverance and just overall intelligence and kindness has brought you to where you want to be early on for your professional career. Your go-getter attitude is key to making wonderful things happen for you. Life is full of surprises and goodness when you put your mind into it. Always all the best for my little cousin (who is not so little anymore!).

  2. Laura Reply

    This was a great read. I can tell you have grown so much in such a short amount of time. Looking forward to what your future has in store. Proud of you ❤

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