Kiana Blackshaw is a student in the M.S. in Event Management program at the Jonathan M. Tisch Center of Hospitality. In this post, she tells us more about her internship this spring semester.
Where are you interning and what is your job title?
I am interning at the American Red Cross, a non-profit organization that prevents and alleviates human suffering in the face of emergencies by mobilizing the power of volunteers and the generosity of donors. My job title is “Nonprofit Fundraising Event Coordinator Intern.”
What projects have you been working on so far?
So far in my internship, I have had the pleasure of working with my supervisor and the special events teams to prepare for the Greater New York Heroes Among Us Gala and the Metro New York North Red & White Ball Fundraiser. Some of my responsibilities include organizing journal ads, sitting in on meetings with musical entertainment, helping with seating charts, and more!
Have there been any challenges in your internship so far? If so, how have you learned to overcome them?
It has definitely been a challenge to start my internship at such a busy time in the event calendar. The first event I am helping with is only a month and a half from my start date, so it is truly crunch time. I have overcome this obstacle by being very vocal when I need help or asking for clarification to complete my task in the best way possible. I learned it is better to ask questions, get help, and do the job correctly instead of just going in blindly and then having to correct my mistakes later; doing so takes away valuable time.
What do you hope to take away from your internship?
I hope to take away new and improved skills that I can apply to future jobs. I would also love to build my networking skills and make new connections. The team has been amazing at helping me acclimate to this new role and creating a fun work environment.
What are your future plans?
After graduating this semester, my future plans are to find a full-time job in the events industry. I am interested in continuing to gain experience in different types of events to find which ones I am extremely passionate about. Ideally, I would like to get some experience in special events! I do want to stay in New York, but I am open to going anywhere with an opportunity.