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Department of Communication and Media

Internships for Students

Contact Department of Communication and Media  

Department of Communication and Media

We hope you have found on our website the information you seek on courses, faculty, admissions, program requirements, and more. Should you have other questions or concerns, please feel free to drop by our department office:

Wayne Hall 202

125 West Rosedale Avenue, West Chester, PA, 19382

 

Phone: 610-436-2500

Internships for Students

Welcome to the WCU Department of Communication Studies internship webpage.

This site is designed to answer as many of your questions about the internship program as possible, so you should read it thoroughly before you contact the Internship Director to discuss your internship options.

What is an Internship?

An internship is an opportunity for you to work in a communications-related professional setting in order to learn more about your major and explore the post-graduation jobs that might be of interest to you.

Why should I take one?

Professionals in the field of communication studies frequently note that the best way to improve your marketability during your undergraduate program is to complete an internship! Internships offer five significant advantages: 1) Allowing you to apply the theories and lessons you’ve learned in the classroom in a professional setting; 2) Helping you to determine what you want to do upon graduation; 3) Providing you with professional experience; 4) Strengthening your resume, and 5) Helping you to begin establishing the professional network that will assist you throughout your career.

What requirements do I have to meet to take an Internship?

You need to meet ALL FOUR of the following requirements:

  1. You must be accepted in WCU’s Communication Studies major or minor at the time that you take the internship.
  2. Your cumulative grade point average (GPA) must be 2.8 or better. (If your GPA is below 2.8, you can still meet with the Internship Director to discuss your options for the program.)
  3. You must have completed SPK208 (Public Speaking), COM219 (Communication Theory) and COM224 (Communication Research) with a grade of C+ or better in each. (These courses must be completed by the time you start your internship - you may not take them at the same time as the internship.)
  4. You must have completed at least one 300-400 level Communication Studies course with a grade of C+ or better. (This course must be completed by the time you start your internship - you may not take it at the same time as the internship.)

When should i take the Internship?

You can take the internship in your sophomore, junior or senior year, as long as you meet the requirements listed above. Internships are available in the Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters. Summer internships can be taken in the first, second or third Summer session or across sessions. Internships are not available during the winter session.   

How many credits can I earn for the Internship?

 Internship credits are based on the number of hours you work at the internship and vice versa.

Credits Minimum Number of Hours for the Semester
3 120 (one eight-hour day per week of the semester)
6 240 (two eight-hour day per week of the semester)
9 360 (three eight-hour day per week of the semester)
12 480 (four eight-hour day per week of the semester)

 

When should I get started on the process?

If you’re thinking about an internship somewhere in your undergraduate program, you are encouraged to schedule a meeting with the Internship Director at any time – you don’t have to wait until the specific semester you’re taking the course to discuss your plans. If you are planning to take an internship in the upcoming semester, schedule a meeting with the Internship Director prior to scheduling for classes. You have up until the start of the term to participate in the program, but your chances of identifying and obtaining an internship and qualifying for the program increase the earlier you plan for it.   

Can i get paid for an internship and also receive credit?

Yes

Can I take an internship with the same organization more than once?

Yes

I am already working in an internship - can I get credit retroactively?

No, you can not. Because internships require ongoing reporting to the Internship Director, it is not possible to get credit for an internship in progress. You can only get credit for internships that you are registered for before the beginning of the term.

Can I take more than one internship during my undergraduate program?

Yes. You can take up to twelve credits of internship in any one semester and up to fifteen credits of internship during your undergraduate program. (Internships are only offered in three-credit increments.). For example, you can take a six-credit internship followed by a nine-credit internship. Generally, the more internship opportunities you take advantage of, the more marketable you will be upon graduation.

Do I have to do the internship for credit?

No, you can do an internship without having it count for a course at WCU. However, be aware that many organizations will not offer internships unless you are receiving college credit for the experience. (Consult with the organization where you would like to intern to determine their policy on credits.) If you wish to obtain an internship without receiving credit, contact the organization you’d like to work for directly. (If you wish to, you can also discuss this option with the Internship Director.)

Where does the internship course fit in my academic program?

While the course number for the internship is COM400, the course does NOT qualify for upper-level communication studies credit. The course will count as either a Communication Studies elective or a general elective.

Where can I find an internship?

If you are a current COM Major, you can view our Approved Internships List. This list is updated frequently with new offerings. If you want to pursue an internship that is not on the Approved Internships List, speak with the Internship Director about your options. More information on organizations that have been approved for credit.

What if I've identified an internship oppurtunity on my own?

Some students identify internship opportunities on their own. Students can intern with organizations on their own, but in order for the internship to count for university credit, the organization must be approved by the Internship Director prior to the student applying for the course. The Internship Director – not the organization – determines whether a particular opportunity qualifies for credit. More information on whether and how organizations qualify for internship credit.

How do i apply for an internship?

You do NOT register for the course on your own – you apply to the program and, if you are approved, the Internship Director will register you for the course.

After you have read this, your next step is to schedule a meeting with the Internship Director (Dr. Edward Lordan) at elordan@wcupa.edu. Lordan’s office is 502 Main Hall. The internship meeting will be used to determine 1) whether you qualify; 2) whether the internship opportunity qualifies, and 3) the number of credits you’ll receive for the course.

You don’t need to be completely committed to an internship before meeting with the Internship Director! You may be planning a few semesters ahead, want to talk about career options or are just interested in additional information about the program - if you’re at any stage in the internship process, you can schedule a meeting to learn more.

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