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Communication

Internships - Student Information

What is the purpose of the Internship Program?

Internships provide students with hands-on experiences in their chosen field of study. They are guided by a professional in the field and provide experiences that are difficult to duplicate in the classroom.

Do all communication students qualify for internships?

No. Interns are a reflection on the Communication Program. We don't want unqualified students representing our program in the field.

How do I qualify for an internship?

There are three basic criteria:

  • You must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 in your major courses.
  • You must have completed your core Communication supporting coursework. (12 credits)
  • You must have approval of Communication Department faculty member.

What types of activities qualify for an internship?

There are three tests we apply to any proposed internship:

  • Will the student learn something consistent with the Communication program mission and goals? (e.g., enhancing oral, written or visual competencies).
  • Will a qualified professional supervise the student?
  • Will the field supervisor provide useful feedback to the student?

What types of activities do not qualify for an internship?

Internship experiences should provide you with a meaningful learning opportunity you could not have in the classroom. We don't want students to be merely unpaid clerical assistants in charge of copying or collating. If you are currently working on a job, this may count as internship if you can meet the three tests discussed above. Usually this means accepting a new project or job responsibility.

How do I find out about internships?

Typically there are three places to locate internships:

  • Career Services in Student Services - This office (SS 1600) keeps a file of available internships.
  • Your Advisor - Your advisor or major professor often receives calls from the local community about internships.
  • Your Network - In the past, students have used their own network of contacts to either create or inquire about internship possibilities.

Do I get paid for an internship?

That depends on the organization. Communication internships can be paid or unpaid.

How many credits can I get for an internship?

Typically we offer 3 credit hours for an internship. This typically translates into a semester long commitment of 10 hours/week to the internship. In some cases we offer more credit hours, but only 3 hours will be credited to your Communication degree. We don't want to create a situation where internship credits are used to meet the majority of your degree requirements. We believe this does a disservice to you and the community.

What procedures are used to set-up the internship?

  • Step 1: Go to the registrar's website and print the Instructor Approved Course Proposal for Registration form.
  • Step 2: Fill out all areas of the form.  See sample.
  • Step 3: Ask your field supervisor to read the set of responsibilities and sign the form.
  • Step 4: Obtain signatures from your faculty internship sponsor and Budgetary Chair.
  • Step 5: Pick up the form and return to the registrar to enroll for credit.

How will my internship be evaluated?

 Interns receive grades just like students in the classroom. At the end of your internship you should ask your supervisor to complete this survey. In addition, most faculty sponsors require that you create a portfolio of your experiences and discuss your experience with them.

How will my internship be graded?

At the completion of the internship, a student portfolio and the internship supervisor’s evaluation will be used to assess.

Communication Internship Requirement

All Communication students will create a portfolio during their internship term. The portfolio will contain:
  • Short essay explaining the position, how it relates to career goals, lessons learned and related work examples (Suggested-News/Media Releases, photos, etc.)
  • E-portfolios are advised. Portfolios are used to show potential employers samples of your work, resume, etc. It must be professional and include your resume.
  • Communication Internship Evaluation
  • Student Internship Evaluation
  • Additional requirements, if any, to be determined by your Internship Faculty sponsor

Supervisor Information

Who is considered a "qualified professional supervisor"?

A person who understands:

  • the intern's job duties
  • the mission/goals of the Communication Department
  • the responsibilities of an intern supervisor

What are the responsibilities of the intern supervisor?

There are three basic criteria:

  • Coach, teach and mentor the intern.
  • Provide necessary technical and office support (e.g., access to equipment, supplies, personnel etc.)
  • Provide a timely Communication Internship Evaluation for the intern and submit to the faculty sponsor

Who do I contact about any further questions?

Professor Danielle Bina, the Communication Internship Coordinator, the student's faculty sponsor or Professor Phil Clampitt, Chair of the Communication Department.