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Eight Scripps students selected as interns for Miss Universe Organization

Nov 20, 2012

Scripps College of Communication students who were chosen for 2013 Miss Universe Organization internships are, left to right: Cameron Soergel, Casey Compernolle, Erika Gruner, Stephanie Gort, Kaitlynn Grady, Katie Lienesch, Greg Mezey and Nolan Alexander. Photo by Megan Westervelt

Eight Scripps students to be Miss Universe Organization interns


By Stephanie Gort and Erin Roberts


ATHENS, Ohio (Nov. 20, 2012)—The Scripps College of Communication is pleased to announce the selection of eight students for 2013 internships with the Miss Universe Organization (MUO) in New York City. Four will head to the Big Apple during spring semester to work for the Miss USA pageant, while the other four be working with the organization of its Miss Universe pageant this summer.  

Digital Multimedia Division interns for the Miss USA pageant are Nolan Alexander and Erika Gruner, while Greg Mezey and Cameron Soergel will intern during the Miss Universe pageant. Public Relations Department interns for the Miss USA event are Katie Lienesch and Stephanie Gort, while Casey Compernolle and Kaitlynn Grady will intern during the Miss Universe event.

The exclusive internship program is made possible by Scripps alumna Paula Shugart, who serves as CEO and President of the MUO. Because of her generosity and the success of students in Scripps, the internship program is in its fourth year.

“The Miss Universe Organization internship offers students an opportunity to work in the public relations department for a globally recognized brand that has been around for over 60 years,” says Brenda Mendoza, Public Relations Director of the Miss Universe Organization. “We depend on our interns tremendously and give them projects and tasks equivalent to an entry level public relations position. It’s a wonderful experience for any PR student looking for a hands-on internship.”

With a complex application process, the competitive internship program is designed to give students real-world experience.

“I wanted to apply for this internship because I knew it would be an amazing opportunity to travel and learn, to gain insight into my future career field, and to increase my body of media work,” said senior video production major, Erika Gruner. She learned about the internship through an e-mail sent from the Scripps’ Dean office as well as from previous students that have interned with MUO.

Many of the students selected said they feel prepared for the internships by their coursework and co-curricular activities.

“I'm so thankful for all of the resources I have at my disposal here [at Scripps},” said junior journalism major Kaitlynn Grady, who currently serves as the AVW Productions Account Executive in ImPRessions. “I've been able to gain a lot of valuable experience through my involvement in campus organizations like ImPRessions, PRSSA and The Post. My involvement in them has allowed me to do and learn things that I wouldn't necessarily have been able to experience by just sitting in the classroom.” 

To prepare for the MUO internship, the multimedia interns have taken a Media Arts 419 Narrative Production class offered through Scripps, which calls for each student to cast, direct, shoot and edit short films.

“I'm prepared due to my hands-on experience for the past two years as Director of Photography for MDIA 419 short films: If the River Was Whiskey, Monhegan Light, and Home for Hari Raya.  I've had the chance to do a lot of my own shooting here as well as to polish my skills,” said senior video production major Greg Mezey.

Senior video production major Cam Soergel is looking forward to the networking opportunities his internship might create.

“New York has great connections to the media world. I'm hoping to build a stronger network, increase my communication skills, and have fun along the way,” he said.