Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Lessons Learned: Portfolios Part I-NO Scrapbooking!

Back in November I put together my portfolio. I had some informational interviews lined up for Christmas Break, so I began to prepare. There is no right way to put together a portfolio, however, there are some things you can do do make it more successful. I will share with you what I've learned in feedback from professionals and professors.

Just promise me that under no circumstance will you allow your portfolio to look like this. Don't think, you could use this as inspiration for "My First Internship." Not only will you destroy your professional reputation, but you might make the professional you're meeting with sick.

Here are some of my tips on how to make yours a winner:
  • Allow it to have a flow that allows you to tell your story (not necessarily chronological).
  • Don't lay papers on top of one another. This makes your reviewer curious about what's under there. It's too mysterious. Be clear and upfront about your work.
  • Use a big portfolio. It should be big enough so that two 8 1/2 by 11 inch papers can lay side by side. This will be very helpful in showing something like a PR plan.
  • If you live in a rainy state, like the beautiful lush landscape of Oregon, make sure your portfolio has some sort of waterproof cover. Trust me, you won't want to be caught in a downpour without it.
  • Use Glue Dots to secure your papers to the pages of the portfolio. With these handy little stickies, you can always move a paper. Nothing is permanent.
  • To display social media or website work, take a screen shot and put that in your portfolio.
  • Photos are fine, but don't make it look like your aunt's scrapbook.
  • Don't put too much in your portfolio. Remember that you should be able to present your work in under 15 minutes.
What are some tips that you've heard and found to be successful? Please share! Next week in Portfolios II, we'll look at "How to Present Your Portfolio."

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