Communications + Arts

Captivate the Audience

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Look around you. Someone, somewhere, got paid to draw your attention toward something that they want you to consume.

Recent reports suggest that occupations that create experiences, tell stories, or provide entertainment comprise one of the highest areas of job growth. With an imaginative mind, a resourceful toolkit, and an interest in engaging an audience, the modern workforce presents countless opportunities to make an impact through creative, original, expressive work.

Use the information on this page to jumpstart careers related to marketing, advertising, branding, public relations, professional writing, journalism, design, digital media, film production, performing arts, entertainment, sports, museums, tourism, hospitality, event planning, and other creative roles.



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Gain Experience: Marketing

For complete information on internships, student jobs, research opportunities, extracurriculars, and more, review our starter tips to Gain Experience in all careers as well as the specialized tips on this page.


As a multidisciplinary craft, successful marketing requires a fusion of creative, analytical, and enterprising qualifications. Your coursework from UCSB can provide broad preparation for some of these qualifications, but it is advantageous to build upon your academics by seeking applied skills and related experiences outside of class. It is never too early to begin.

To start planning, the best strategy is to read full-time job descriptions for the specific types of marketing positions that interest you, and identify any frequently mentioned experiences or skills you need to gain to become qualified. If you do this while you are still a student, you can pursue experiences which develop the needed skills and experience for your career goals and enhance your resume. 


Consider pursuing roles that focus on outreach, recruitment, event planning, social media, administration, or fundraising and development, as these roles are closely related to marketing and can be obtained as a student.

Qualifications Worth Gaining

A significant step to break into marketing is to gain at least two or three related technical proficiencies. Though marketing professionals have different specialty areas, they also share many common tools and techniques that are worth learning early in your career. 

Here are some common qualifications you may want to seek exposure to as you build a foundation of experience in marketing (note that there are many others as well): 

  • Adobe Creative Cloud: Though not all marketing professionals are actively involved in production, it is helpful to understand how creative work is produced using this leading software package.
  • Email Campaign Software: Email is one of the most common channels in which organizations reach customers, and there are hundreds of different softwares used to deliver these messages. Once you learn how to use one application, you can quickly adapt to most other applications. 
  • Google Analytics: Often seen as the “language of digital marketing,” this tool helps organizations study web traffic, marketing campaign impact, and the behaviors of a customer base.
  • Powerful Copywriting: Showcase your ability to grab an audience with sample ads which demonstrate the value of a product or service. Any medium or platform is acceptable, as long as you show your prowess for capturing attention.
  • Search Engine Optimization (SEO): This is the process by which organizations use analytics to optimize their content in Google search results, to be easily found by a customer base.
  • Social Media Marketing: Utilize your familiarity of social media platforms to take on marketing efforts in those sites on behalf of an organization. Build yourself beyond the basic level of experience that most people have with social media as users.


Types of Experience

There are many manners in which you can develop skills and experience outside of class. Oftentimes, you can take initiative to learn relevant skills through self-study (e.g., engaging in online videos, instructional books, and guides) or personal projects (e.g., starting a website, blog, or social media account and using it as a means to grow an audience about something that interests you). All of these opportunities can provide a chance to build your resume toward careers in marketing.

To see a few formal experiential opportunities to create relevant qualifications beyond class, click the items below.

Experience in academic research at UCSB can be a valuable tool to have, as marketing is grounded in principles of research regarding consumer behavior, which can help you enhance your understanding of how marketing is conducted. Additionally, jobs in market research are actively involved with similar efforts, therefore experience with academic research at UCSB can be a valuable asset in many instances.

Learn More

To learn how to become involved with research on campus, visit our Research page.

Partaking in campus organizations and their events is an excellent way to gain experience, as these organizations provide you with leadership roles and networking opportunities to enhance your skills with. Additionally, the teamwork and event planning involved in these organizations are valuable skills to hone when preparing for a career in marketing.

Here are some marketing organizations on campus:

Learn More 

To browse all of UCSB’s campus organizations, learn about those which interest you, and explore upcoming events, visit our Extracurriculars page.

In addition to campus organizations, there are national and international marketing associations which can equip you with additional industry knowledge, trends, and connections. These are also great opportunities to enhance your skill set through projects and leadership positions. 

Here are some examples of related professional associations:

Here is a list of some example opportunities to consider:

  • Carsey-Wolf Center Internship Scholarship Program: Accepts applications in the fall, winter, and spring quarters at UCSB for $1000 scholarships to help fund internships in media industries.
  • UCDC: Presents a unique opportunity to pursue marketing courses, research experiences, and internships from the perspective of living in Washington DC.
  • UCSB Athletics Department: Offers marketing internships to current UCSB students that provide skills in areas such as media development, event management, and customer relations.
  • UCSB EAP: Gives UCSB students the opportunity to pursue marketing classes and internships abroad, which may not be available locally. This is also a great way to acquire new perspectives in the industry, make connections, and improve foreign language skills. Talk to an advisor to see what marketing opportunities are available.
  • Wit Mark: Provides internships that work directly alongside marketing experts and contribute to the team’s diverse projects.

Learn More

Check out the UCSB Department of Communication for more resources on internships related to the marketing field. The department also has an internship program which provides opportunities within the Santa Barbara area.

Be sure to check out Handshake for all of the latest job and internship postings for UCSB students, and review our starter Gain Experience pages as well as our Job Search Strategies page for complete guidance.

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