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Taking a page out of Robert De Niro’s hit film, The Intern, Gwen Wunderlich and Dara Kaplan of Wunderlich Kaplan Communications recently launched the first of its kind in the public relations sector, a women’s Re-Entry to the Workforce Internship Program called The Enternship.
The enternship is for women of retirement age looking for a major career change or moms looking to break back into the workforce. Based in New York City, this paid program allows women to still have an income while learning the tools, skill and trade of public relations during flexible hours of their choice. The agency teaches women how to create PR campaigns, plan events, write pitches and press releases, research for clients and more.
Not only do “enterns” gain hands on experience, they will also begin to make new connections in the real world.
The agency Â recently accepting eight enterns — of all ages, backgrounds and experiences — for the Summer 2016 program. BlackEnterprise.com had the opportunity to chat with two of these enterns: former attorney, Charlotte Anderson (62), and stay-at home mom, Rochelle Wilson (52), about their re-entry into work.
BlackEnterprise: How did you discover the Enternship?
Anderson: I belong to a Facebook group called P.R. CZARS. I saw this opportunity pop up and I immediately saved it so I could put in an application. The funny thing is that after I applied, my daughter, who is also on that site, tagged me on that post like, “Mommy this looks like this is just for you” and I was able to say to her “Ha! I already applied.”
Wilson: A friend of mine tagged me when One Village announced this internship opportunity and, honestly, I felt like the universe was speaking to me. I went home the very same day, sat down, and in one sitting banged out my cover letter and attached a resume. I just felt very clearly that I was supposed to try for the opportunity and I did.
What are you looking to gain upon completion of the Enternship? What is your dream?
A: One of my dreams is [that] I would like to create a blog. Well, I already have a blog called We Fly Too, but I haven’t done anything with it. The premise of the blog is for people 60 and older. I want to be an influencer, spokesperson, and a model for seniors who think that it’s over— just show them it’s not over.Â I’m also writing a book called The Do-Over that will chronicle my life and experiences as an entern.
W: I want to create a lifestyle brand for anybody who wants that reset to make the most of their life, wants to stop waiting until you find the right job or you get to the right weight or the right size, or you meet the right person, and to start living joyfully.
What are you sacrificing by reentering the workforce?
A: I’m not sure that I’m making a real sacrifice because of the opportunity that I’m getting, so, if I have to say something it would be sleeping late.
W: I feel extraordinarily fortunate to say this, I don’t feel that I’m sacrificing anything.
What do you know right now that you wish you would’ve known when initially starting your career pursuit?
A: I know now that there is a greater reward in following your passion and doing something you really want to do because time is not recoverable.
W: Now, I’m abundantly clear that life is short, tomorrow’s not promised. I should not wait for things to align to what I believe is perfect before I reach for the things that I want, say the things that need to be said, and show people how I feel about them.
What personal or professional attribute do you possess that would be beneficial in a millennial-driven work environment?
A: I think I have a better understanding of office politics and human relations. I think that we have more patience and more understanding. My understanding is a deeper level understanding, possibly from my legal training. I don’t take everything at face value and that makes me suffer less disappointment.
W: I have an approach that differs from theirs in a way that broadens our capacity to see, conceive, ideate, and communicate.
When will you pat yourself on the back and say, ‘Well done?’
A: When I have made a difference in the lives of everybody that I touch.
W: I try to do that everyday.
Visit WKC.Rocks for more information on The Enternship and other workshops.