This month, Vero Philippines wrapped up its inaugural nextGEN internship program. From an exciting day one to a triumphant graduation, our five talented interns went on a three-month journey where they learned how agency life works through a series of insightful mentorship sessions, hands-on development of an IMC-PR campaign, and an unforgettable trip to our vibrant regional office in Vietnam.

Here are some highlights:
Local and international mentorship sessions

Each intern worked closely with a mentor throughout the program and followed a training plan tailored to developing the specific skills they needed. These training plans included topics and exercises that allowed them to understand their roles better, gain essential industry knowledge, and see how a leading agency operates day to day. They also had the chance to take on real-world tasks and projects.

“My nextGEN internship with Vero was the best learning experience I’ve had,” said copywriting intern Iby Elaine Castro. “Vero’s team members taught me a lot about dealing with clients, meeting tight deadlines, collaborating with professionals, and working in the communications industry.”

Aside from regular training sessions with their mentors, the interns also acquired valuable industry insights from international workshops led by Vero executives from across the region. This exposed them to new perspectives outside of their home country and the opportunity to collaborate with a multicultural team.

“Vero’s nextGEN program has a unique approach to training young talent,” said Danica Marielle Vallano, HR Generalist at Vero Philippines and a nextGEN mentor. “Packed with interactive workshops and hands-on experiences, the program empowers interns to work alongside seasoned professionals both locally and regionally. The interns are also fully integrated into the agency’s day-to-day workings and treated as employees, encouraging a sense of accountability and responsibility as they lead and manage their own projects and tasks.”

But it’s not just the interns who benefitted from the program—the mentors also learned a lot in the process of passing on their knowledge and personal lessons to the younger generation.

Sheila Mae Golingay, Data Analyst for Vero Philippines and ASEAN and nextGEN mentor, said, “Overall, it was incredibly rewarding to see the interns grow and develop over the course of the program. I feel proud to have played a role in shaping their future careers and helping them achieve their goals.”

Visiting Vero Vietnam

As part of the program, we sent our interns to our Vietnam office to spend time with regional team members. This memorable trip allowed the interns to receive mentorship from some of our top executives, immerse themselves in Vero’s vibrant regional culture, discover Vietnam’s rich heritage, and, of course, have some fun.

“My experience in Vietnam with my co-interns is something that I’ll never forget. I got to bond with and learn from the regional and Vietnam teams while soaking in the country’s culture. The workshops we attended there were enlightening and refreshing, as we learned about the nuances of the marketing and PR world,” said data intern Martina Giron.

The trip let the interns experience how work can be both fun and fulfilling, as they saw Vero’s core values of trust, kindness, and curiosity in action. These values encouraged them to take risks, explore new ideas, learn from their mistakes, and celebrate each other’s successes.

“Our time in Vietnam made me realize that a company can trust and invest in their interns as much as they trust and invest in their employees. The Vero nextGEN internship program is truly one for the books,” HR intern Jerico Rivera shared.

Working with WWF-Philippines

As a final challenge for our interns, we asked them to develop a full IMC-PR campaign and pitch it to a real client along with some Vero executives. For this project, we collaborated with environmental NGO WWF-Philippines, which implements various conservation projects across the country.

The interns were tasked to come up with a strategy to help WWF-Philippines educate the youth and working class about the issues WWF is addressing and to ramp up the organization’s social media engagement. It was a challenging task, but the team was able to accomplish it thanks to creative ideas and great teamwork.

“We were given a significant level of autonomy on this project, but our mentors were supportive and provided us with the necessary tools to tackle it,” account management intern Marie Hazel Cabillo said. “Although it was a challenging task, we approached it with dedication and treated it as a real pitch. Our aim was to give it our best and provide a solution that met the client’s expectations.”

The project gave the interns a unique opportunity to put theory into practice and get involved in helping solve pressing environmental issues, which made the exercise more meaningful.

“At WWF, our main goal is to address the two biggest problems that we are facing right now: nature loss and climate change,” said Matikas Santos, Senior Communications Officer at WWF-Philippines. “We believe that success in achieving our goals would mean sustaining our efforts in the future, and the next generation should be at the forefront of telling these stories. This is a real-world challenge that faces all industries and sectors. We hope that more students will learn about and apply environmental advocacy communications so that more people join the movement towards a better future for all living things, humans included.”

For a graduating university student, entering the workforce can be daunting, as the entire process of getting employed—from job hunting and interviewing to adapting to their first job—is unfamiliar terrain. In addition, internship programs with dedicated training plans are few and far between, especially in the Philippines. But at Vero, we designed the nextGEN program to ensure that students are equipped and ready to make their mark in the industry.

“It is important for Vero, and companies in general, to invest in upcoming talent, since they are the next generation that will lead the industry. We need to set a standard for them as a workplace so they will not be discouraged, but rather motivated to join their chosen industry in the future,” said Bianca Balderas, PR Manager for Vero Philippines and ASEAN and nextGEN mentor.

If you’re looking to kickstart your career with one of the leading PR and Digital Marketing agencies in Southeast Asia, sign up for our upcoming internship opportunities! You can reach us at manila@vero-asean.com or you can fill out our Contact Form.