Duane Lindsay tells us about the Taylor Bennett Foundation

At the time of writing, I am enrolled in the Taylor Bennett Foundation internship programme (www.taylorbennettfoundation.org). It’s a truly great scheme designed to create diversity in the Public Relations industry. The summer programme that I am participating in is hosted by Brunswick (http://www.brunswickgroup.com/index.aspx); Britain’s top financial and corporate communications firm.

Unfortunately, I ended my university career frustrated and lacking confidence. Unsure about what path to take next, I moved home and took the first retail job available. My original intention was to take a brief sabbatical from PR, but I spent over a year working in customer services. Consequently, I was spurred to pursue a PR career last year once it dawned on me how much time had actually passed.

I secured two internships at TOPMAN and John Lewis and rapidly realised that consumer PR was not my cup of tea. Luckily, I remembered a link that the lovely Jane Crofts sent me via Facebook two months earlier for the Taylor Bennett Foundation. The programme was orientated around financial and corporate communications, this seemed perfect so I successfully applied and proceeded to phase two of the assessment process; a rigorous day of group activities, presentations and several individual interviews.

It was difficult but I made it onto the scheme.

The Taylor Bennett Foundation has been implicit in rebuilding my confidence. Top-level practitioners (without a doubt some of the very best in the country) mentor me and I regularly network with upcoming account executives and established directors.  I also attend PRCA and Finance Talking courses, and I’m not even half way through the programme yet.

The next phase for me is to secure my first entry-level position, so I can put my new attributes into practice. I’m excited about my future and I look forward to choosing a sector to specialise in.

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