Grady InternViews: Isabella Martinez

Grady InternViews: Isabella Martinez

June 29, 2023

This is part of a series where we ask Grady College students to describe their summer internship experience.  

Isabella Martinez is a fourth-year public relations student working with Visit Athens as a marketing and communications intern. Read on as she provides insight into what this internship looks like.

Briefly describe your internship and responsibilities.

Visit Athens promotes the Classic City as a destination through owned content and media relations. As a marketing and communications intern, I am mainly responsible for creating and scheduling social media content for @visitathens, growing organic engagement through TikTok and Instagram Reels, and drafting and updating blog posts based on our SEO strategy. Other responsibilities include attending and promoting events and capturing new photo and video content as able. To look at some of my work follow Visit Athens on Instagram, Facebook, and TikTok, and check out!

What does the structure of your internship look like?

This role is a hybrid, part-time internship. I am required to work 10 to 20 hours per week, including in-person hours on Tuesdays and Thursdays. During my in-person hours, I go to the Visit Athens office, which is located at The Classic Center, and meet with my supervisor to discuss my progress and content creation strategies for the upcoming week. I also attend any Visit Athens or Classic Center team meetings that occur while I am present at the office. I fulfill the rest of my hours working from home, at an Athens local coffee shop, or around the city attending fun events or getting content at the various local businesses. 

What’s the biggest challenge you’ve faced?

The biggest challenge I am currently facing is getting sufficient traffic and engagement on TikTok. To overcome this challenge I have attended a couple webinars to learn the best industry practices, researched what other Visitor Bureaus are doing to increase engagement, and this week I will be attempting to create fresh and trendy content suited for TikTok’s audience. 

What has been your favorite part about your internship so far? 

My favorite part about interning at Visit Athens has been getting to learn about Athen’s vibrant and artistic culture. By promoting the Classic City through writing and content creation, I have been able to get a deeper sense of the creative energy and rich history of Athens beyond being a college town. It has also been great to be informed and attend the events that go on every day around the city! I recommend for everyone to go the events calendar on the Visit Athens website to see everything the city has to offer. 

student standing in front of a podium giving a speech.
Martinez presenting an award at Grady Salutes as a Grady Ambassador (Photo: Jackson Schroeder)
How have the classes you’ve taken at Grady prepared you for this internship?

My success at this content creation internship has mostly been due to the verbal and written communication skills I’ve gained through Grady’s courses. Journalism Reporting and Writing equipped me with the skills to communicate clearly and concisely across platforms, and PR Communications taught me how to do so in a creative and effective manner to grasp an audience’s attention.  

What’s your advice to other students looking for a similar opportunity?

Having a network and a good relationship with faculty, staff and other students will help you tremendously! Most of the great opportunities I have obtained were because of a good rapport with an individual who is willing to give me a chance, or because I know someone who knows someone.  

What lessons will you take back with you to the classroom in the fall?

No matter how much I learn about PR and communications from books and classes, practicing my skills and being informed on best industry practices is fundamental in this fast-paced and ever-changing field. This upcoming fall semester, I will take a more active approach to learning by constantly practicing my skills, learning from resources outside the classroom, and staying up to date with currently recommended industry practices. 

How has this role helped you discover what you are passionate about?
Three students pose for a picture at the Dawgs with the Dean event. The student in the middle is dressed in a hot dog costume.
Martinez (left) gathers with two other students on the Schnitzer Family Media Lawn for Dawgs with the Dean Spring 2023 (Photo: Sarah Freeman)

I realized that content creation is a field I deeply enjoy, and I have gained appreciation and affection for destination marketing. This is an industry that aligns with my passion for adventuring, traveling, and immersing myself into diverse cultures. 

How will this role guide your future career path?

This internship has opened my eyes to new career possibilities, such as the potential to combine my personal passions, like traveling, with my professional career in public relations and communications. Further, the experience and connections I am gaining will open the door to many new opportunities.  

If you could give your younger self one piece of advice, what would it be?

Don’t knock it until you’ve tried it! I often refrained from social media content creation as a job since I have struggled with it in my personal life. If I didn’t try it, I would’ve never known that professional content creation is something I greatly enjoy. If—on the contrary—I didn’t enjoy it, it wouldn’t be a big deal since it is only a short-time summer internship. College is the perfect time to try new things and discover your passions and disinterests.