I expect this summer internship to be an opportunity for me to figure out what my interests are and hopefully further those interests. I am really interested in how ideas and perspectives are shaped. Therefore, I am interested in marketing and how advertisements affect the way people perceive others and the formation of stereotypes. I want to use this internship to go into more depth with the way advertisements shape perspectives and want to look at how the image of the working woman is shaped through advertisements. I also expect this internship to help me improve my research skills and overcome my weakness of technology.
When I was in high school, in my English class, we looked at propaganda techniques used during the World War 2 and how propaganda shaped the landscape in women’s role in the U.S. I really enjoyed the class and realized that advertisements do not only display the stereotypes, but they create them and play a huge role in normalizing them. This project also matters to me as a woman preparing to enter the workforce. I have done an externship at a financial services company where I was thought to be a man when only looked at my name. Because my name doesn’t give my sex away, they automatically thought I was a man since the field is male dominated. Also, last semester in my introductory psychology class, I based my research on gender stereotypes in the workforce and found that powerful positions in workforce were associated with male gender. I am excited to delve into how and why these perceptions are created and who creates them. I also am excited about the project, because it will give me an idea about marketing research and what the motives are behind the creation of ads.
Since we only have 6 weeks, I will need to narrow it down; however I don’t know how I will yet. I am planning to start with some readings next week, so I have an idea on where to focus once the program starts. I definitely want to circle my project around the image of the working woman, however, I am not sure what type of ads to use or what aspect of working woman to focus on. I also definitely want to look at today and compare it to another time which might either be 1940’s, which was a turning point for women in workforce in the U.S, or 1970’s, when the second wave feminism focusing on workplace inequalities took place.
I will be using scaler for my project and some coding might be involved. Having taken Computer Science 105 my first semester and ending up withdrawing it (I wasn’t lying when I said technology is a weakness of mine), that might be one of the challenges. Also, narrowing down resources will be a challenge since there is so many interesting ads about women in the workforce.
Besides all this, I know 6 weeks is a short time for all the ideas I have and I will just try to take one step at a time and not overwhelm myself or lower the quality of my research by trying to fit in too much in too little time. I will have my peers and librarians to always go to and ask for advice. So excited for this to start!