For third level students one of the most daunting tasks can be getting work experience before graduation. Getting a part-time job can be a great way to do this, but it often it can be hard to get a part-time job in the area you want- this leads to many students becoming an intern. Navigating the sea of internships out there can be a tricky task. I trawled through a lot of LinkedIn ads and Jobs.ie posts before stumbling upon one that worked for me- Online Editorial Intern with Gay Community News. Here I will share my GCN internship experience.
What is GCN?
GCN stands for Gay Community News and as I said before it is Ireland’s longest running LGBT+ publication which has grown and grown since its conception in 1988
What makes GCN really special is its community focus. It is a microphone and a mirror for Ireland’s LGBT+ community- A way for queer voices to be heard and a means to challenge and explore issues our community faces today.
Of course there is the physical GCN monthly magazine which you can find throughout the country free of charge. In addition to this they have a website you can find news, entertainment, opinion pieces, podcasts, videos and competitions. They also organise a range of events from discussion panels, to exhibitions and parties all for and by Ireland’s LGBT+ community.
Who can intern with GCN?
When I was applying to intern with GCN I was afraid that because I don’t study journalism would mean they wouldn’t be interested in me. However, if you have an interest in writing, journalism or videography and want to develop your skills and knowledge, you should apply. When I had applied I only ever wrote one article for my university paper but as part of my application I was asked to write a piece and I got accepted!
I interned with GCN to gain experience in a professional workplace and to develop my writing skills with a respected publication. If you have to do an internship as part of your work placement as part of your studies you could also do it with GCN!
When I was there were people studying from all sorts of disciplines and all starting with different levels of experience. So don’t let your studies hold you back and if you don’t have experience you will be asked to write an article or demonstrate your skills in some way. The team will really help and work with you so you develop your skills.
Why do a GCN internship?
If you go onto GCN’s career section right now you will find a multitude of reasons you should internship with them you will gain “hands-on experience in content creation, copywriting, journalism, social media management, SEO and WordPress.” But the best part of interning with GCN was that they worked with me. From day one they asked what I was interested in, what skills I wanted to develop and gave me tailored advice. The skills I learned helped me create this blog!
In a lot of internships I feel that you enter and often do the same thing everyday and you don’t feel fully a part of the team. In GCN that couldn’t be further from the truth- in fact it came as a shock to me that from the moment I entered the door I was part of the GCN team. After you learn the ropes you will be joining in the meetings, discussing magazine covers, attending events and be fully immersed in what GCN does.
If you intern with GCN you’ll gain a wealth of knowledge and experience tailored to what you want to learn. Build a portfolio in contributing to an award winning magazine. And you’ll get to make a difference in the lives of LGBT+ people in Ireland.
I was mainly interested in writing and I started off doing news articles and an occasional opinion piece. I even got featured in the physical magazine with an article I wrote about my experience moving to college! It was crazy to see myself in magazines around Dublin city. I even got to interview Amanda Palmer which was nerve-wrecking but really a dream come true!
My experience with GCN was so much more than I could have hoped for. I learned practical skills and gained work experience but I also learned so much about Ireland’s LGBT+ community, got the chance to meet amazing people and I didn’t realise when I started but I became a part of something really important and special.
You can find out all the information including how to apply for a GCN internship here!
Keep up to date with my studies on Instagram here.
Until next time!
-The Student Explorer