What’s Your Internship?: Jessica Atkinson

Jessica AtkinsonStudent: Jessica Atkinson

Major: Communication with an emphasis on social interaction

Grade: Senior

Position: Lead Event Planner with collaborative artists Steph Kese and Erin Pollock of KESEYPOLLOCK (January 2013 to July 2013), Unpaid, can be for credit, varies from 10 to 30 hours/week

Duties include: Rebuild website, social media, assisting with castings in the studio, and lead event planning (press release writing, posters, marketing, sales, etc.)

How did you find out about it?  

The UW Communication internship page

What made you decide to apply?

“I looked and it was three days before it closed, so I was really discouraged to apply for it. I had just been to the career center two weeks before, so I had the booklet on how to build a resume. I’ve worked in the restaurant industry, so I didn’t have a professional resume on how to apply my skills and classes, but I decided that I needed to do this. I typed up my resume in two hours and then I wrote them this long email because it was exactly what I needed. I told them my position about doing my own art, but having business and sales background and why it would be a perfect fit… It’s amazing when you really apply yourself and know what you really want to be doing. I know any experience is great, but if I’m not doing what I really want to be doing then I won’t fully apply myself, so I held out for this one.”

What do you like most about it?

“I love learning new things and not knowing how to do something, like for example building a website that the artists are happy with, that showcases their best work the way they want it showcased, but making sure that whoever interacts with it can navigate it appropriately and find what they are looking for. I like problem solving and figuring things out. How do you get a beer company to donate 500 beers for an event? How do you market KESEYPOLLOCK to a larger demographic than just the art community so that people are not intimidated?”

Is there anything you would change?


What is the working environment like?

“If it’s at my home, it’s very organized and calm and I have a designated time because I work as well. So I say, ‘I have this much time for the internship and this is what I need to do tonight’… But when we meet up for a meeting to discuss everything that needs to get done, phones are out, laptops are out, note pages are out, and it’s just like 100 different subjects in an hour of what we need to do and it’s really intense. And then when we’re in the studio, it’s really intense as well because then we’re doing the body castings. That’s really intense especially when people are doing a full body because you have to make sure they’re breathing right through the straws, there are no allergic reactions going on, if they move at all it’s going to mess up the mold, and so overall it’s really intense. That’s what I like though or I wouldn’t take on as much as I have.”

How do you think it will help you and your career or future goals?

“My future career goal is definitely to become an account manager because I want to be doing something creative, but I know I’m more in the organizational/business side and making and maintaining relationships. It’s teaching me how to be under high levels of stress, I’m meeting new people, and interacting with them to create new bonds and relationships. Also I’m budgeting and figuring out contracts and permits and getting people to do things for free.”

What’s your favorite accomplishment so far?

“Definitely the website, and hopefully the event when it’s over (on June 29). I won’t feel fully accomplished until the event goes the way I want it to go.”

Is there anything else you would like to add?

“I moved to Capitol Hill about two years ago and I was so intimidated by the whole art scene, but I wanted to be in the thick of it because it was a change in my life and I wanted to be around everything that was going on. I’m seeing why there’s a lot going on and it’s my ultimate goal to make people feel welcomed who don’t know anything about it and who want to find out and making that connection with the community.”