A few months ago, 22-year-old Negele Hospedales was a bartender at Bondi Beach in Sydney, Australia. Now, the Canada native has something bigger on his resume — Chance the Rapper's intern.
Back in March, the entertainer tweeted to his millions of fans and followers that he was looking for an intern, "someone with experience in putting together decks and writing proposals." Thousands of replies flooded in, and the tweet was retweeted and favorited tens of thousands of times.
Hospedales, a fan of Chance's, opted to make a website in the hopes of getting the rapper's attention, and so ChanceHireHospey.com was born. The site creatively combined Hospedales' love and knowledge of Chance the Rapper with all of the ways he could be invaluable to the artist as an intern.
Here's how he did it:
Instead of submitting a resume, Hospedales made a website.
But it wasn't a site that he slapped together in a few minutes. Instead, it was a carefully and artfully designed page that showcased Hospedales talents and experience. The theme was that of a musician's world tour, framed as "The Cover Letter Tour" with headliner Negele Hospedales.
The college grad also bought his URL outright instead of riding on a platform like Wix or Squarespace. It may be a tiny detail, but it showed he was committed.
With millions of fans, it was expected that Chance the Rapper would be sifting through intern applications of people who loved his music, but maybe didn't necessarily have the chops to work in business. Luckily, Hospedales checked both boxes.
On his site, he highlighted all of the ways he would be integral to Chance's team; in high school he started a partnered YouTube channel, in college he started a website to highlight Canada's urban culture and, maybe most importantly, he explained how he was influenced by Chance himself.
"Most importantly, following the teachings of my favourite artist," Hospedales writes, "we made this all possible while staying completely independent; No advertisements, no paid song releases or commissioned posts. Everything self-funded through clothing sales or student loans, because to us the impact that we could have on the culture was more important than anything else."
Chance the Rapper made Grammy history this past February when he won best new album for "Coloring Book." He has famously refused to sign with a record label, and this was the first awards show that allowed streaming-only albums to be nominated to the category.
"I graduated in December at 21 years old with a sub-par GPA," Hospedales writes in his cover letter portion. But it was clear he had already done the work to win over Chance and his team, and that his passion and dedication far outweighed his grades at school.
Hospedales' website worked. In an interview with music site Pigeon & Planes, he recalls the night he heard from his idol.
"I got off work as a bartender in this awesome little music bar on Bondi Beach where I was working at the time, and had a text message from Chance that literally read, 'how are you' — not the type of message you expect to get from your favorite rapper at 3 a.m."
Other famous names have had luck finding interns in their online fan community. This past March, Jake Sirriani went viral when his "internship rap" video caught the eye of NBC's Jimmy Fallon. Sirianni, like Hospedales, ditched his resume in favor of a hilarious self-edited video of himself rapping his pitch to work for the late night star to the tune of every letter of the alphabet.
In this quick video, Sirianni showed that he was creative, technically skilled as an editor and understood what audiences love watching (the video went viral with hundreds of thousands of views) — all important components of working for late night television. He got the job.
Hospedales this week detailed his experience of interning for Chance the Rapper over the last few months, calling it "a time of transition in my life that marked a shift from slightly hesitant sometimes-blogger putting off getting a real job, into a confident multi-faceted creative with a taste of how great it all could be – and the newfound realization of the person that I'm meant to be."
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