Sara Davis ’12 recently began a position as a Fellow with LEVICK, a Washington, DC-based communications firm. She began her career as a Recruiting Analyst with Aon Hewitt in Charlotte in May 2012 and talked to us about how she landed her first dream job less than a year later.
CCD: Congrats on the new position! How did you make the move from HR to PR?
SD: Upon deciding that I really wanted to make the transition from Human Resources into Public Relations/Marketing, I realized I would need to learn a lot more about these industries. I spent the first few months of 2013 using AlendaLinks and LinkedIn to connect with Davidson alumni, all of whom were extremely receptive to helping me out by chatting on the phone, sharing their advice and experience in these industries, and even revising my resume. I can’t say enough about the incredibly helpful and kind Davidson alumni network. My job search was specifically focused on Washington, DC and the Advertising, Marketing, and Public Relations industries.
Through a mutual LinkedIn connection (and Davidson alum), I was able to connect with a Senior VP at LEVICK. We were able to chat about the company, DC, and public relations in general. I was definitely interested in the firm after speaking with her and having scoped out their company website. I applied for their Fellowship position the next day, and interviewed and received an offer for the position as a Spring 2013 Fellow in May.
CCD: How has the experience gone so far?
SD: I have absolutely loved my first month here at LEVICK. The program itself has been heralded as perhaps the best (and most intense) introduction to Public Relations in DC. I’m in a class of four Fellows, all of whom are 2011 – 2013 college graduates eager to delve into the PR industry. We have three great supervisors who monitor our workload, give us advice, and schedule weekly Lunch & Learns for us to ask questions and learn more about PR. Additionally, given that this is a mid-size firm of about 50 employees, I’m able to work directly with all employees ranging from Account Coordinators to Senior Vice Presidents, which has been a thrilling experience. No workday is ever predictable here. As a Fellow, I can be tasked with anything that needs completing, which is great for getting a holistic view of the PR world.
CCD: What are your responsibilities as a Fellow?
SD: My general responsibilities include pitching media stories to reporters to give LEVICK executives and clients an opportunity to comment in top-tier news outlets, conducting and presenting research, reporting social media metrics, summarizing and analyzing the day’s media for clients, developing new business ideas, and providing administrative support to all LEVICK employees.
The program is highly selective, paid, and for college graduates only. Fellows are hired seasonally. LEVICK’s Fellowship program has a proven record of training its Fellows so quickly and comprehensively that they have no trouble finding positions at any premier PR firm following the Fellowship, if not a position at LEVICK itself.
In sum, it’s a fast-paced introduction to life in a highly-successful, full-service communications firm that covers many areas including crisis, strategic communications, public affairs, finance, and digital communications. I’ve loved how open and encouraging everyone at LEVICK has been, and hope that this will be the start to a great career! I spent 5 long months searching for an opportunity to transition into PR, and have been thrilled by how this has turned out.
CCD: If you are interested in connecting with Sara, you can do so through LinkedIn or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. She would be happy to share tips on how to network effectively during a marketing-related job search.