Advice for intern candidates

By: Allison Baron

We’ve all had that gut-wrenching feeling when you realize you’ve made a mistake on a document just as you’re hitting the send button. Making a mistake on your cover letter or resume is a whole other enchilada.

Your cover letter and resume are supposed to show employers how well you express yourself, and showcase your qualifications and skills. A good cover letter and resume might earn you an interview. Typos or poor writing will disqualify you immediately from almost any position, and certainly for an internship at a public relations firm, where writing is an enormous part of what we do.

This has been top of mind recently as we review potential fall intern candidates. Here are just a few of the worst and hilarious blunders we’ve seen. We hope you find them helpful, or at least entertaining. And if you’re an intern candidate, don’t be one of these people.

  1. “I’m interested in the internship position available at Brenda Thompson PR.”
    Um, getting the company name right is obviously a requirement.
  1. “Skills: Custer Service.”
    This is both funny and sad, as the rest of the resume was strong. But with dozens of applicants, a typo automatically means this resume goes on the “no” pile.
  1. “College has been a incredible learning experience so far.”
    Apparently this applicant has more learning to do before being ready for a real-life PR internship, if they don’t know the basic grammar rule of using the article “an” before a word beginning with a vowel. 
  1. “I am great with the pubic.”
  1. “Skills: Attention to Detail, Strong Work Ethic, Team Player, Self Motivated, Attention to Detail.”
    Something about this list tells us attention to detail isn’t a quality this applicant possesses. Also, downstyle. Look it up if you don’t know what means.
  1. “Experience: Demonstrated ability in multi-tasting.”
    What’s multi-tasting? 
  2. “Dear Sir.”
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