The Importance of Learning Digital

By Dylan Bailey || THG Summer Intern 2018

Today’s ever-growing world of social media, online interaction and digital design is still an area of media many are afraid to touch. Coming from college, or even high school, it’s easy to think that the focus of an internship in public relations will be writing. In my experience, having strong writing skills is only one piece of the puzzle. Another piece, digital media, can be just as key to your success at an internship or entry-level position.

Sadly, learning digital is usually not a large part of any college course. In my experience, it is very easy to find classes that will help you write in a formal setting, or professors that teach you how to target an audience, but it is much harder to find classes that will help you succeed in the digital world. And because of that, you most likely will have to teach yourself.

Everything I know about digital media I have either taught myself or learned from a peer or coworker. College does a great job of getting you to follow deadlines, write papers, take tests, but as far as real world applications, you need to teach yourself many of the valuable skills that will help you succeed, especially in public relations.

This includes, but is not limited to, programs such as Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, and Illustrator. By knowing how to use these programs well, you can design and edit graphics and display information in a visually pleasing way. By doing this you will have a much more complete skill set and as an intern, you’ll be able to help your coworkers in every possible way. You won’t have to rely on others to design your work and save your firm time and money by not having to use an outside graphics designer.

Learning these programs will be an extremely useful skillset to you so that your teammates can rely on you to design for them. It’s also necessary. Most of the information we attain in our daily lives is through the internet and it will only increase with time. With all the content out there on Twitter or Facebook or whatever media outlet you use, it is extremely tough to be memorable. When you have the design capabilities to make something that grabs a reader’s attention for more than a fleeting moment, that is a victory for you and a valuable asset to have. It is tough to get to that level of expertise in these programs but you will thank yourself repeatedly if you put in that time because the rewards come with it.