A statement from Amy Bakken on the internship
This summer, I had the opportunity to intern for the Barnesville Economic Development Authority. Throughout my time, I worked on multiple projects including referral rewards to realtors and builders, exposure of the new Barnesville Shops and Storage, and much more. Also, I worked on a Facebook ad campaign to attract new, young families to move to Barnesville’s Del Acres Gilbertson 2nd Addition. This campaign ran through a series of nine different advertisements, each bringing attention to different aspects of Barnesville and what the community has to offer. To aid with these projects, I communicated with many business owners and industry leaders that taught me key factors of Barnesville’s economic development mission.
When I first began this internship in May, I truly did not know what to expect. One of my main goals was to further my education and get more hands-on experience in the communications field. Little did I know, this internship would be one of the greatest experiences I could have been given. I learned how to effectively communicate in a professional setting, market a city to potential future residents, and had the opportunity to sit in on various committee and board meetings. My goal was greatly surpassed throughout my time here at the Barnesville EDA.
As it is commonly known, there are no ‘normal’ days working in an Economic Development office. Many tasks and skills I learned throughout the summer include press releases, MailChimp messages to Fargo-Moorhead realtors, Adobe InDesign and Illustrator, Canva, and daily Facebook posts, advertising strategies and engagement tracking. I also had the opportunity to design many pieces to deliver to realtors, builders, and the general public. I am thankful that the Barnesville EDA allowed me to expand and improve my design and communication skills!
I had many projects over the summer to complete. A main project was to expand the use of social media in marketing activities for the City. During this project, I researched different cities to see how they marketed to their current and potential residents using different types of social media and planned a paid Facebook advertising campaign to make Barnesville an attractive community to young families. Another project I’ve recently been working on is a local business survey to collect employment and other information from Barnesville businesses. More projects that I completed were a number of press releases, assisted with planning for the new CoLoft coworking area, created a new Barnesville Parks brochure for the Parks Board, and attended various committee meetings which involved Economic Development.
On August 5th, I attended the MNEDF Economic Development Academy in Maple Grove, where a bunch of professionals in the field answered questions specifically regarding careers in economic development. I learned valuable information regarding different careers and how each career path varies to end up in economic development. I also got the chance to talk to other young economic development interns, and learned how each city differs in their mission.
Overall, this internship has given me insights and confidence in the communications field that I will carry with me through my professional career! I gained practical skills, worked in a fantastic, supportive environment and made connections that will last a lifetime. My time at the Barnesville EDA will be one that I will remember forever.
A statement from Karen Laurer (Barnesville EDA Executive Director) on the internship
From the Barnesville EDA perspective, “With the assistance of Amy Bakken, significant progress was made towards our 2019 Barnesville EDA goals. Amy single-handedly coordinated a robust Facebook ad campaign designed to create awareness throughout the region of Barnesville opportunities; in addition to her outreach efforts to area real estate agents using Mail Chimp. The collection of accurate local labor statistics are critical to decision making by our Board of Directors. Without Amy’s assistance, these projects could have not been completed. Thank you again for providing the scholarship…..without that, this internship would not have been possible.