Internships have become a sniggering joke in the national consciousness, but the summer program for recent college grads at Harris Drury Cohen is strictly business.
Each year the Fort Lauderdale, Fla., shop pairs six unpaid creative, account and media wannabes. Their eight-week program climaxes with the two teams pitching an account. It's not for real, but the client is and so are the executives who decide who wins.
Partner Stan Harris said this year's sextet, including graduates of Florida State, George Washington University and the University of North Carolina, will make faux pitches to the Florida Panthers, with the National Football League team's vice president of marketing, Declan Bolger, on hand to make the final call. "These are very driven young people," Harris said. "By the end, they are pulling all-nighters and it becomes very competitive."
"The competition isn't that fierce yet," said FSU grad Greg Merritt. "I think it'll get more intense as we get closer to the date. Right now we're all still friends, but that may change. If we win, I don't think they've decided if we get a set of ginsu knives, or just a thank you or what."