Tomorrow is the final day of my six-month college placement with I Love Limerick! As part of studying New Media and English in the University of Limerick, in the second semester of 2nd-year students are required to do a six-month work placement.
I was delighted to secure my placement with I Love Limerick quite soon into the process of looking. The offer came in through my student mail, and the job would entail writing, journalism, and social media. This was perfect for me. It was probably perfect for everyone in my course, to be fair. It’s just what I want to do after college, and so I was eager to make a good impression at the interview. It went well, and I was ecstatic to receive a follow-up email only days later to confirm my placement.
My co-op/ work placement with I Love Limerick began Tuesday, January 16, and I took my first climb up the 8 flights of stairs that I would be seeing for the next six months. I was excited to learn new things.
The first week was all training. We were trained in all aspects of the site, from story-writing to sharing them through the website’s social media platforms, as well as administrative stuff to do with the website. I learned loads, and I didn’t stop learning all the way through. At times it was tough, stressful and so busy, but it really gave everyone a taste of what working in the industry meant.
My first events were at the end of the month, and I had the launch of the Great Limerick Run as well as the launch of a play that evening. The two events- both launches- were quite different, and it immediately showed me that the website deals with pretty much everything and anything to do with Limerick, which is pretty cool!
Eimear and I have said numerous times that before we started our placement we didn’t realize the range of things that actually happened in Limerick City and County, so it was a pretty interesting experience from that perspective alone!
In February, we were introduced to more events and went to a really cool Valentines Day Coffee Morning in aid of ADAPT. One of the many projects I Love Limerick takes on was taken on this month, with BNest, and throughout the placement, we went to a few events for BNest to further publicise their Incubator Hub.
I also got a pretty cool story opportunity in February, when I got to go down an interview Suzanne from the Limerick Gateway to Education about their latest appeal to sending 2,000 unused schoolbooks to Malawi.
Read ‘Help the Limerick Gateway to Education Malawi appeal fund sending 2,000 books to schools in need’ here.
Read ‘Miss Drag Hens Den Ireland 2018 taking to Dolans on February 10’ here.
March was probably one of our busiest months as we had St Patricks Day and the weekend of festivities surrounding St Patricks Day, and we had the Fresh Film Festival. The Fresh Film Festival is an annual national film competition for young filmmakers. The ‘heats’ were on in March and were all over the country. I helped cover the Limerick heats as well as the Galway heats. In April the finals were held in the Odeon. The Fresh Film Festival was pretty hectic, but also immensely cool too, as there were so many talented kids and teenagers.
St Patricks weekend was pretty hectic too, as we had the parade on the Saturday, and on the Sunday we had the launch of a project Eimear and I had been helping out with, Croí Glas. It was a busy weekend, but the launch of Croí Glas was super cool, and it made the weekend completely worth it. Plus, I loved covering St. Patrick’s Day- I love festivals and parades, so covering them for work isn’t exactly what I would call the most labour intensive work!
For our bigger events, April was a little quieter. We were even able to go to the Student Race Day, and avail of the lovely photographers at I Love Limerick who were at the main gates for some good amazing photos!
May was again, very hectic with the Great Limerick Run and Riverfest on the same weekend, and then Darkness into Light the following weekend, so it was all go for a while.
After almost meeting him at an event a few weeks previous, we finally got to meet Mr James Patrice who was co-hosting Fashion Friday as part of the Riverfest festivities. We spent alot of the weekend around the city, trying to cover all aspects of Riverfest, and trying not to miss out on anything. The Great Limerick Run took place Sunday, May 6, and that was another day of madness in trying to cover everything and leave nothing out. We got there though, and the weather was absolutely glorious for the whole weekend so we even managed to pick up a little colour (even if it was a red colour and not a tan!).
Darkness into Light was the following Saturday, and it was madness, as Ryan, Eimear and I were in the middle of moving houses. So, we did some overnight and pulled an all-nighter! The Gospel Choir that sang before the walk/run took place were simply brilliant and really woke everyone up. It was amazing how much energy they had for so early in the morning. Darkness into Light was such a cool thing to be a part of, and be able to help publicise because it is for such a good cause, and the unity it brings is so lovely.
Cailyn Ireland opened a stall in Shaws Department Store in the Crescent Shopping Centre at the end of May, and Michelle Regazolli Stone from MRS MakeUp made the trip down from Dublin to do a masterclass for the event, so that was another interesting and different event we got to cover- and we got to meet MRS MakeUp too!
As any other month, there were a lot of smaller events from Mayoral and Civic Receptions, to more BNest events, and a fashion exhibition from LSAD which showcased the students’ designs.
Read ‘Limerick based mental health advocate StormDi Cameron talks participating in the Great Limerick Run’ here.
Read ‘Team Running with Grace raise over €10,000 for Cradle Ltd in memory of Grace McDermott at Great Limerick Run’ here.
In June we had some school events- there was an allotment party, and a primary school new wing opening, more receptions, but generally a proper wind-down before our last major event, Pride.
Read ‘Spin It Out to Fight It Out for Mid-West MS Ireland branch on World MS Day’ here.
Read ‘Otter Street Art brightens up Shannon Bridge Walkway’ here.
Limerick Pride took place last week, July, Monday 2 to Saturday 7, and was a week of different events, and a big Limerick Pride parade to conclude on Saturday. For social media, I went to Queens on the Cobbles in Cobblestone Joes and the GOSHH Youth Pride Party.
As I said, I love parades, and so I was really looking forward to the Limerick Pride parade, and Pridefest at the Hunt on Saturday.
The students that would be taking over from us began their training last week also, so Richard decided it would be cool if they went to the Pride Parade also, so the old would help the new. I helped the social media interns with the social media, giving them tips and advice on what type of content to get up, and how to word it etc. The parade was really cool, in my opinion. There was a lot of running around trying to catch up to the car at the front with Richard and then falling back to get other participants in the parade, but it was again another great learning experience.
Pridefest at the Hunt after was a cool family event, and there was a lot of fun things happening in the tent, from drag performances to a tea party and fun dance class type.
It’s hard to believe that six months have already past, and I’m already done my placement with Richard, and I Love Limerick. The placement has been a great experience and a really massive learning lesson in a lot of aspects. I’ve learned loads in the last six months and even learned stuff as late as this week, so it has been a gradual learning process. I definitely feel like I’ve accomplished and achieved a lot in the last six months in my work placement, and will take a lot from this placement that I believe will stand by me.
My last day is tomorrow, Friday 13 of July, and I’ll be returning home to Cork for the Summer in hopes of securing a job, so fingers crossed!
For more of my articles with I Love Limerick go here.