All communication majors are required to complete an internship before they graduate. Internships allow you to work side by side with leading professionals in the field, gaining firsthand practical experience to refine what you have learned in the classroom. Internships also help you improve your professional skills.
Finding an internship
You may apply for internships advertised through Weber State University, or you can find internships on your own. Many internships are listed on the bulletin board across from rooms 321 & 322 in Elizabeth Hall. Additional internships may be listed in the Career Services office on campus. Since communication is a broad field, internships suitable for communication students may be advertised through other academic departments on campus. Career Services keeps a central listing.
Internships that develop any of the communication skills taught in the classroom are suitable for communication students. Internships do not have to be directly in the career field you hope to work in once you graduate, although that is certainly ideal. You are required to apply communication theories and skills during the internship. Academic credit will not be awarded if you simply observe professionals at work or help the professionals by performing menial tasks, such as running errands and answering telephones.
Some businesses and organizations pay students for their internship work. Others do not. While the Department of Communication does not care if the internship is paid or unpaid, it is concerned about the quality of your experience.
After an internship is secured
Once you have secured what you think is a suitable internship, you must make an appointment with the internship adviser listed for Comm. 4890 to ensure that the internship is acceptable for the awarding of academic credit. Ideally, this should happen during the first week of the semester. Once the adviser agrees, you need to fill out a form, which the department secretary uses to create an internship packet for you and your supervisor. The internship packet contains information about the internship process, as well as forms that need to be filled out at midterm and finals.
The Department of Communication requires 60 hours of work at the internship for each internship credit awarded. You may take up to three-credit hours of internship credit during a single semester. You may receive six credits of Comm. 4890 total, allowing you to complete more than one internship.
Here are the requirements:
- Work 60 hours at the internship for each academic credit earned.
- Keep a weekly log of what occurs during the internship experience. The log must be typed and double spaced. You are required to write at least half of a page each week, documenting hours worked, tasks performed, experiences gained, etc. The weekly logs are handed into the internship adviser at midterm and final.
- Complete the mid-semester and final reports included in the internship packet. These should be typed. Make sure the supervisor fills out and turns in the mid-semester and final reports included in the supervisor’s packet.
- E-mail the internship adviser every two weeks, noting any problems and giving a very brief synopsis of the experience.
- Develop a portfolio. Interns are required to keep copies of projects they have worked on. Interns may have completed the project by themselves or as part of a team.
- Meet with the internship adviser during the eighth week of the semester and during the 15th week of the semester for about 20 minutes. You will hand in your weekly logs, mid-semester or final reports and discuss the internship and the contents of the portfolio.
- Awarding of grade. Upon successful completion of the internship, you will receive the grade of Credit. If the internship was not successfully completed, you will receive No Credit.
For More Information