“Internships are an invaluable way to get a taste for what it’s like to work in the real world. There’s nothing like taking what you’ve learned in the university setting and applying it to real-life situations. Not only that, but internships are fun and a great opportunity to meet like-minded college students from across the country and professional colleagues who will mentor you and become your friends. I found an incredible team and company and ended up converting to full time thanks to what a positive internship experience I had.”

Adi Wineland, Verizon Corporate Office


Who should complete an internship?

When you look at an advertisement for a job description, almost always it will say, “2 years minimum experience.” Internships are one of the ways to earn that experience. SCOM students’ internship experiences range from:

  • social media,
  • IT Help Desks,
  • foundations and nonprofit orgs,
  • camps,
  • sales,
  • sports marketing and promotion,
  • publishing,
  • radio and TV stations,
  • music festivals,
  • hospitals and so many more.

 Whether it’s corporate, non-profit or a small business, you can earn credits and experience.

Interns must meet the following criteria:

  • Have completed the SCOM core: 242, 280 and 341

  • Have at least 75 hours of course credit

How many hours do I need? 3 credits = 160 hours or 6 credits = 320 hours

How do I find an internship? The best method is word of mouth—almost always, someone your family or friends know, who know someone.  Traditional career search engines work as well. 

What happens after I find an internship? You contact Dr. Toni Whitfield “Dr. T”  (whitfits@jmu.edu) and begin the process. The course will be created in MyMadison and you then register on MyMadison.  Once registered for credit, you will be enrolled in a Canvas course where you complete your academic work for the course.

*What happens if I don’t meet the minimum requirements? You could possibly qualify for a Directed Project which is very similar to an internship. Email Dr. T for more information.

My internship allowed me to improve my interpersonal communication and research
skills and pushed me out of my comfort zone multiple times throughout the experience. I learned
that reciprocity in terms of communication is one of the most important skills to obtain in the
field of politics, as the wants and needs of voters must be put before everything else.
Additionally, canvassing door-to-door provided me with a genuine representation of what it’s
like to speak with constituents personally. 

Caroline Davies  
Office of Elizabeth Guzman for Delegate
Re-election campaign in Prince William County

This internship was truly the most valuable experience I’ve had throughout my communication career. It taught me so much –not only about the influencer industry but about myself and my capabilities. I learned there is so much more to the influencer industry than meets the eye. These influencers put in a lot of hard work including producing content, contract negotiations, etc., than the average follower recognizes. I also learned that I am a great writer, and that blog style is where I truly shine.

Gemma Weinstein 
Find Your Influence

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