21 oktober 2019
Hi there! Let me quickly introduce myself. My name is Louise Horsten and I am a module 8/4th year student at HMSM. After four amazing years in Maastricht (yes, I’ve had a little delay), it was time for my final internship before obtaining my bachelor’s degree next February.
I have now been working at Pitch Communication & PR, a PR agency that is known for their expertise in food, wines and hospitality, for almost two months now. And yet, it feels like just a week. ‘’Time flies when you’re having fun’’ they say, right? It has been hard work and long hours, but luckily I was well prepared due to my time at HMSM. Let me tell you how I got to this internship and how my experiences are so far!
After attending the minor Horizons in Hospitality in module 6, I realized there is a much broader world in hospitality than just hotels and restaurants. It opened my eyes to new opportunities in regard to my management internship. I still loved hospitality, but I wanted to experience this in a different environment. Having an enthusiasm for marketing, writing, events and social media, I started looking for a PR internship. I simply dived into the internship database that HMSM provides, and started looking for my internship match in Amsterdam. Why there, you may ask? Even though my operational internship in Cape Town has taught me more than I could have ever imagined and left me with the best memories, I decided to stay ‘’home’’ for this internship. I will probably stay working after obtaining my bachelor’s degree, and I figured living in a different country would not make it easy for me to pursue a job and career here. I definitely want to live and work abroad at some point, but only after building a good resume in a city and country where, in my opinion, are a lot of career possibilities.
To get to know more about the internship and company, I decided to contact a former intern that I also found in the database. She told me about her own experiences and confirmed most of my good expectations. I applied, passed the interview at school and got invited to an interview at Pitch. My managers are both former hotel school students, of which one studied at HMSM. And let me tell you, what they say about being a hotello and being one step ahead of others, career wise, is certainly true! Hotello’s are known for their positive working attitude and will (almost) always be recommended to others. My manager has experienced classes, teachers, internships, tests and projects the same way I have, which I think makes it easy to estimate my working attitude. I was hired immediately.
So, what does my internship consist of? After writing a thesis for 20 weeks from 9 to 5 every day during the previous module, I was well prepared for 40+ hour workweeks. These hours are filled with the organisation and execution of events, writing press releases, keeping the social media of our customers up to date, organising meetings, pop up stores, photoshoots and much more. Every day is a completely different day, which is exactly why I like this internship.
Our team consists of an equal ratio of consultants and interns, which means the workload is also almost equally divided. This gives all interns lots of opportunities and responsibilities like getting our own customers assigned. So far, I have attended the opening of a bar at the Conservatorium Hotel, Amsterdam Wine Festival, a Ribera del Duero trade dinner, product photoshoot and press event of a new product and there is still so much to come. All relevant writers, socialites, reporters, bloggers and experts attend these events, which means there is a healthy amount of pressure to make sure everything runs well. Trust me, I have made enough mistakes already, but I can now emphasize ‘’learning from your mistakes’’ more than ever. Luckily, as an intern, I still have the right to make some of these mistakes.
Oh, and I shouldn’t forget to mention the amazing staff party we had a few weeks back. I am not at all trying to persuade you into applying for this internship, but think limousines, drinks at The College Hotel, dinner at Le Garage and karaoke afterwards… I had to recover more than one day, but it was a lovely opportunity to get to know the team, that only consists of 10 in total, even better and have fun outside of work together.
So far, so good. I learn more every day, which I will probably continue doing until the end of my internship because there is so much to learn in this industry. But luckily, not everything was or is completely new to me. Networking, deadlines, reporting, teamwork and enough knowledge about marketing, food, drinks and hospitality are just a few things the HMSM has taught me that I can now reap the benefits of!