My name is Bella Maher, and I am currently in my senior year at Chapman, majoring in Communication Studies with a themed inquiry in Race and Ethnicity. Currently, I am working as an Event Management Intern with Venues & Estates, an event-planning company that specializes in Southern California Weddings. Their services include providing the wedding venue, along with the entire planning process – catering, bar, rentals, design, and more. They offer a wide variety of venues to choose from and work with clients to find their perfect venue, and from there, they plan every last detail of the wedding up until the wedding day! 

In terms of finding this internship, I discovered this opportunity on Indeed and then applied through the company’s website. I completed a phone interview, and shortly after that, I began my first day. My role is that of an Event Management Intern, whose main responsibilities consist of assisting the event manager and coordinators in planning, organizing, and facilitating weddings. This involves communicating and following up with the clients to ensure their event needs are met, which means that a large part of my job revolves around client inquiries. I respond to clients inquiring emails and assess them to see if their wedding budget works with our packages, and then schedule their calls with the event managers to further discuss. I also am responsible for developing creative elements for social media platforms and managing social media accounts, mostly Instagram and Facebook. I help select the images and content, create the captions, and schedule the date and times for them to be posted. Another one of my responsibilities is assisting on the day-of events, meaning helping set up, break down, and assist with anything in between at the weddings themselves. 

The most recent wedding that I worked on

I have gained a lot of knowledge during my time in this internship. In my opinion, there is no better way to learn about a career that you are interested in than getting hands-on experience in that field. Although many of my Chapman classes have given me invaluable knowledge, there are not many classes that give you the opportunity to actually go out and get real experience working in a field that you are interested in. That is why I am grateful for the opportunity to be able to use an internship for class credit, as it encouraged me to start discovering more about careers that I am interested in. 

One valuable lesson that I learned, in particular, is how to effectively communicate with a wide range of people, from clients to vendors to event attendees. In terms of clients, I learned how to properly listen to their needs and concerns and communicate these effectively to the rest of the team to ensure that the event meets the client’s expectations. This helped me further develop communication skills that I had learned from some of my Chapman classes, such as group communication, interpersonal communication, and business communication. 

In terms of a success story, I do believe that I have made some sort of impact on this company, even if it is small. As I manage their social media, I must create posts with captions that are professional yet fun, consistent with the voice of the company, and match what is going on in the photos. Although I was never totally confident in the captions when pitching them to my team, they have repeatedly told me that I excel in this area and that they love what I come up with. This is interesting to me because, as an intern, our main goal is to learn, so we do not necessarily think that we can be learned from as well and have an impact on the company. 

Some of my social media work

In conclusion, my internship experience with Venues & Estates was an amazing opportunity to gain practical knowledge and develop new skills. Throughout the program, I had the chance to work with professionals in my field, observe their work, and learn from their experiences. This exposure allowed me to acquire a deeper understanding of the industry and the challenges that professionals face. I was also able to put into practice the knowledge I had gained through my communications classes. I am grateful for the opportunity to have learned from experienced professionals and for the chance to work on real-world projects. I feel confident that the skills and knowledge I have gained will serve me well in my future endeavors.