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Catching Up with PY Interns

An internship can be a valuable prelude to a successful career and a memorable chapter in a college student’s life where lessons are learned, skills are developed, and character is strengthened. We understand the enormous importance of a high-quality internship at Pyper, Inc., and we believe that offering students the opportunity to fully immerse themselves hands-on in the marketing industry provides them with the confidence they need to find their calling as future professionals. After all, most of us had internships in college that have shaped our own career paths—so we love to give back! 

To celebrate National Intern Day, we caught up with five fierce former PY interns: Bri, Maddie, Kim, Wylona, and MK. They have graduated from their internships with us, earned their degrees, and have moved on to incredible careers at agencies, in-house marketing positions, and more. 

We are grateful for all of our interns’ impact on Pyper, Inc. and continue to wish them the very best!

Bri Burkhart

PY Intern Spring 2018

Studio Designer at Publix Super Markets and Freelance Photographer

Former PY intern Bri Burkhart sits on a couch, holding her camera

What led you to choose your PY internship over other opportunities?

I loved that it was a woman-owned small agency. During my interview, all the girls made me feel really comfortable. It was a feeling I did not have when I interviewed with other agencies around Tampa Bay. A lot of interviews I left made me feel bad about my work as a student.

What did you learn in your PY internship that you took with you to your career?

Ultimately for me, I came from the Advertising program at USF. At the time, my ad professors cared more about concepts than they did actually designing the work and how it looked. 

PY filled a huge gap I had in my education by working with Cat. She taught me so much in my time there and never made me feel bad about not knowing things. I really think if it weren't for PY, I wouldn't be in the job I am today working for Publix as a designer. 

What were the benefits you found in interning for a small company?

I loved working for a small company. Looking back at it today and now working in a corporate role, there are a lot of things I miss about PY. The women I worked with in my time there really made me feel welcomed. I was made to feel like part of the team. I loved that my work was actually used within the agency and that really gave me the confidence boost I needed and a great addition to my student portfolio. 

The girls at Pyper also had me take photos after learning I was a photographer, which was awesome since that was something I loved, and I still got to do both that and design work for them. I learned a lot and still had a ton of fun at our lunch outings and even just little things we did in the office. 

Provide one word to describe what your PY internship meant to you.

Ah! One word is so hard to describe what this internship meant for me. But if I had to pick ONE, I would say confidence. 

Overall, I could go on and on about how much I LOVED my time at Pyper and still hold it and the girls near to my heart to this day. I still tell everyone about how much that internship meant to me and how much fun it was. I looked forward to my days I interned for PY (minus the drive over the bridge from USF)!

Maddie Rafferty

PY Intern Spring 2018

Former PY intern Maddie Rafferty sits on a stool against a white background

What led you to choose your PY internship over other opportunities?

I chose to intern at PY for SO many reasons. 

  1. With the amount of experience the PY team has, I knew I could learn so much.
  2. The client diversity at PY. 
  3. I look up to Lindsay, and getting to work and learn from her on the accounts team was a very cool opportunity. 
  4. Kelly’s Ruth Bader Ginsburg portrait in the office—simply iconic.
  5. No assholes.

 

What did you learn in your PY internship that you took with you to your career?

A couple really important things I learned during my internship were how to set realistic deadlines and have good communication with your team and client. Setting realistic deadlines is so important—it sets clear boundaries on project timelines and allows enough time for the team to take their time and work their magic. Good communication with your client builds great trust and rapport, and lets them know you genuinely care and want the partnership to succeed. Good communication among the team on deadlines and building great coworking relationships. But there are so many other memorable things too! 

 

What were the benefits you found in interning for a small company?

I got to know everyone! I felt like I had relationships with everyone in the office, which in return, made me feel comfortable enough to ask more questions and really lean in. The smaller team also allowed me to be a hands-on intern—it was so educational to be a part of projects and see them from beginning to end. The hands-on experience I had at PY was priceless, and it definitely set me up for success in my future account coordinator and account management positions. 

 

Provide one word to describe what your PY internship meant to you.

Can I give three? Memorable. Grateful. Magic.

Kim Nixon

PY Intern Spring 2019

Brand Marketer at Scott Brown Media Group

A selfie of former PY intern Kim Nixon

What led you to choose your PY internship over other opportunities?

There were actually two internships I was interviewing for: Pyper and another company that did events. After interviewing with Pyper, I knew right away I wanted that position. I knew I could learn so much from the women there. And I could tell they really knew their...stuff. 😉

Pyper, Inc. would give me the opportunity to really dive in and get a real look at the industry life and work, while giving me the ability to explore other skills I could be better equipped for. (All this from one interview!)

What did you learn in your PY internship that you took with you to your career?

Competitive research; building out a social media planner, complete with relevant buckets; the gloriousness that is data analytics; and the importance of branding outside of slapping the logo on something.

What were the benefits you found in interning for a small company?

I didn't feel like a lackey. I felt like I was truly a part of the team even though I was "just an intern." Working in a smaller company gave me access to the people who actually ran the company—Kelly was always ready to lend her expertise and give me a shot at trying something new. Lindsay was there to give her thoughts and help guide me along in whatever project I was doing. 

Some of the opportunities I had, like sitting in on a deep dive and getting to be part of an event execution, would not have been afforded to me in a bigger agency.

Provide one word to describe what your PY internship meant to you.

Indescribable….just kidding! Timeless. I’m still using a lot of the lessons I've learned there.

Wylona Bouwens

PY Intern Fall 2018

Video Editor at Lilo Social

Former PY Intern Wylona Bouwens sits on a navy chair with her cute dog on her lap

What led you to choose your PY internship over other opportunities?

I looked at the PY website before applying, and I was very interested in the brands they worked with and the work they produced. Plus, the company culture seemed very fun and bold.

What did you learn in your PY internship that you took with you to your career?

Pyper, Inc. gave me opportunities to try different types of design projects with different brands. Thanks to the bit of creative freedom they gave me, I found that I liked animating and video editing, so I’ve ended up with a Graphic Design/Video Editing career.

What were the benefits you found in interning for a small company?

A major benefit is that it's easier to make good connections and relationships in a smaller company. Also, PY is filled with cool people that will mentor you even after your internship is done. After my internship, I wanted to learn more about calligraphy for my senior thesis and Cat was more than happy to meet up for coffee and give me a quick calligraphy lesson.

Provide one word to describe what your PY internship meant to you.

Valuable!

MK Brittain

PY Intern Fall 2020

Junior Graphic Designer at Joffrey's Coffee & Tea Company

Former PY intern MK Brittain smiles on during golden hour

How did you find us? 

While being in the Graphic Arts Program at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg, we had to complete an internship credit. SO many of my peers were talking about applying to Pyper, Inc. This wasn't even months before we could officially apply credits to our transcripts, but the moment I looked at PY’s Instagram account, I knew I had to apply when I could get the opportunity. The aesthetics and clientele really called to me! 

 

What led you to choose your PY internship over other opportunities? 

Pyper, Inc. as a company speaks to my inner rebel as a graphic designer—they don't just do what most agencies do in Florida, or even in the U.S. PY exhibits such uniqueness and has a great sense of community (and humor)! I knew throughout the interview process that this would elevate my skills as a designer and give me a great sense of the graphic design world. 

Most importantly, PY was not afraid to express themselves, and I am the same way! 

 

What did you learn in your PY internship that you took with you to your career? 

Don't be afraid to be yourself and don't be afraid to give out ideas! What I loved most about Pyper is that at the end of the day, we would all come together and talk about our day and what needed to be accomplished for the day or the week. 

I got to learn more about the culture, who my co-workers were, and how we executed projects in such a flawless way just by being ourselves and having a strong work ethic!  

I found that working in the field is so easy to get caught up in our own work, so I've strived to learn about my co-workers and encourage a sense of community.

 

What were the benefits you found in interning for a small company? 

It was getting to know everyone and how easy it is to communicate your ideas with one another! I've always liked going to small group settings because they’re more intimate and they create a strong bond. It helps create that sense of community like I mentioned before and creates a welcoming environment for everyone! Having the one-on-one frequently to help me grow in the space helped so much as well, from learning technical tips to developing ideas. 

 

Provide one word to describe what your PY internship meant to you. 

Marvelous!

Interested in becoming a Pyper intern?

Learn how to apply here: Join the Team