Thursday, July 14, 2011

I Am Not An Intern

Even though I seriously feel like one. I'm 21 years old, younger than most college seniors - a point which was driven home the other day when I learned that my new bff Kateri is a good 5 months older than me, even though she still has a year of undergraduate education to go. I'll admit that I felt a little jealous - not because I want to be in college anymore (Lord knows I don't!) - but because she has an extra year of living and maturing before entering this crazy thing called "the real world." I think I could have used an extra year myself.

Here's another funny thing about the real world. For me, at least, it's basically the exact reverse of my life at school. In college, I spent my days going to classes and reading books. I spent my evenings (during the week anyway) reading blogs and writing stuff to publish online. Now, I spend the days online, reading political blogs (and still a decent number of cutesy design blogs) and writing stuff about them, while the evenings are for voracious reading and attending lectures. Not to mention happy hours, which are always a good time.

Anyway, I still feel like a college student at the moment (I think I'll feel this way until August rolls around and I don't go buy new school supplies like I have every year of my life since I can remember), and so once I discovered that the interns at work were sweet and friendly, I figured they could be my new friends. Except here's the thing, I might think of myself as an intern, but they don't. This hit me hard when I went to lunch with one of them and she started peppering me with serious questions about my job and how to advance up the journalism career ladder. With pangs of guilt in my heart I realized this is exactly the way I act when I meet an older professional journalist. She was viewing me as a networking opportunity while I was just looking for a friend at work. That was a tough one to swallow, but it was a really important reminder. I might hang out a lot with interns, I might sit by the interns at work, and I might be the age of an intern. But I'm not an intern, I'm a full-time professional, and I gotta act like one.


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