As a part of the DME internship program, all interns are required to use Slack for daily internship communications. Let’s take a look at Slack and what you can expect while using it at DME.
What is Slack? This program is the Digital Media Engagement (DME) team’s main platform where interns from over a dozen different departments can communicate and collaborate. Since DME is a wholly virtual internship experience, all DME interns will use Slack features like direct messaging, group messaging, internship-wide channels and department-specific channels.
When you first join Slack, you will have access to internship-wide channels and department-specific channels. Some key channels to be aware of include, but are not limited to, #important, #moonlighting and #federal_employment. The #important channel is where Dom and department leaders post important information you need to know. The #moonlighting channel is where interns from different departments post work opportunities that you can volunteer for. Previous moonlighting opportunities included transcribing podcast episodes and recording social media metrics for Dom. Lastly, the #federal_employment channel is where interns participate in career development opportunities like “Making Connections Monday” and “Career Development Friday.” This is the channel to use if you are looking for career development tips, resume feedback or LinkedIn endorsements.
Outside of internship-wide channels, you will also use channels specifically for your department or relevant to the work you do at DME. For example, new writers will be on the #writing channel. However, many also join the #editing, #researchers and #graphicdesigners channels so they can easily find editors, researchers and graphic designers for help with their projects.
Beyond channels, you will likely use Slack’s direct messaging feature frequently while working at DME. It is a great way to reach out to department leadership for questions and concerns and privately talk to others. To direct message a specific person, search their name on the top search bar in Slack and click on their name. After that, Slack will take you to a direct message channel that allows you to privately talk with that person.
What about some tips and tricks for Slack? One tip for using Slack is that if you need to step away from Slack, you can set your status as “away” by clicking on your profile on the top right corner of the desktop Slack application and selecting that feature in the menu that appears. You can also temporarily mute notifications from that menu as well; this is a useful feature if you are in class or studying. Finally, you can also update your profile and Slack settings using the same menu mentioned above.
Slack is a critical tool for all DME interns. Since we do not work in a traditional office setting, most of your communication will be conducted on Slack. That is why Slack participation is a necessary requirement of this internship. We hope this overview helped demystify Slack, but if you have questions or need guidance, reach out to your department leadership and they will be happy to help you navigate through Slack. Happy Slacking!
Writer: Raymond Lin
Editors: Merrit Pope, Annabelle Colton Graphic Designer: Kiki Kelley