Last Saturday Holly, the founder of VoiceBox Media, invited the interns over to her house for a bonfire with a few of her friends. Most of her friends are in the communications field, so it was a great networking opportunity. I was a little nervous to go and thought about canceling, but I knew it would be fun so I ignored my anxiety.
My fellow PR intern James and I rode together out to Kyle. When we arrived, Holly’s friends were setting up their tents. I love camping, so I was a little jealous that I didn’t bring mine. We hopped out of the car and went up to meet Holly, who was grilling burgers, and she introduced us to everyone.
I thought her friends might be intimidating because they all have careers and I am just a college student, but that wasn’t the case. They were all so funny and kind. They made me feel less nervous, and I wasn’t expecting that at all.
When it finally got dark enough, we started up the bonfire. It was HUGE, and the giant pile of scrap wood that we were using kept it that way all night! I hung out for a couple of more hours before I had to head home. Everyone wanted to know what we were all doing for our internships. We told them about our social media strategy, how we had more than doubled VBM’s social media audience and how we are trying to get VBM stories published. They told us about their jobs, what they have been working on and a ton of hilarious stories.
In the end, I am so glad that I went. All of my nervousness disappeared in the first five minutes, and the rest of the time was a blast. Also, I expanded my network of communications professionals. The next time that I need to go to a work function or meet with people I don’t know, I will remind myself of this evening and of how good people can be if you give them a chance to be.
That is what VBM has shown me over the past few months. Whether it is giving someone a chance to show you that they are nice, or giving someone a chance to change the worl, everyone deserves that opportunity, and we need to make sure they have it.