My Student Placement so far – Manreet

VisitBritain is the national tourism agency, working with 22 active international markets to raise interest globally to travel to Britain. I say this because before applying to the role, I had never heard of VisitBritain (VB, because I understand the terminology now), however once having started the interview process, I got a pretty good idea.

My very first impression of VB came when I was asked to complete an article of ten British experiences aimed at international tourists who are considering coming to the country – I immediately was drawn to the company upon my research. Although I felt like I knew our country really well, my research showed me that Britain is filled with so many great experiences that I wasn’t aware – how could I possibly reduce myself to just 10?!

My first day had finally arrived and I was giving tasks straight away;

“this is our Editorial Plus, you’ll be in charge of this every week, could you also write a story on all of the Christmas events happening in 2015, and update our list of annual events for 2016.. and we have a what’s new list for 2016, so can you research all the new exhibitions and musicals happening across Britain.”

Yes – I felt slightly out of breath too!

Of course, I didn’t know what much of these words meant, and a lot of these documents are about 30 pages long. However, not once have I felt overwhelmed at VisitBritain – the entire team has been so helpful with any queries that I have, no matter how little.

Since working here, I have helped with finalising international press trips for the new James Bond film, Spectre; I have had the opportunity to meet the PR team for the Premier League to learn how their partnership works with VB, worked with many colleagues from our overseas offices including Japan, Australia, Spain and Brazil.

Recently, Australia held its’s first #HelloWorldRelay on Instagram, which involved well known instagrammers from around the world posting pictures of their country every hour for 36 hours. My role in this world’s first project was to contact the Instagram account holders to invite them to attend, and then to organise an ‘instameet’ with local Instagram travel accounts to get involved too.

These projects are just a snippet of my time at VB. Tourism is a hugely vast area, and I am still learning how far tourism can go; from Spice Girls to Shakespeare, Bond to Buckingham Palace, Pride and Prejudice to Paddington Bear, I’ve been exposed to so much in just a month.

I have learnt so much about Britain, but most importantly about public relations. The team I work with is great, they have given me many opportunities to meet other professionals in our field through networking and meetings.

To anyone searching for or starting an internship/student placement, my advice is to ask questions and get involved in any project that you can to gain the best experience possible.

By: Manreet A – Psychology & Business student, Aston University
Role: International PR Co-ordinator Intern ’15-16

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