What is an internship?

An internship is when you earn college credit for doing hands-on work related to the field of Communication Studies. Our students can earn up to 8 credits of COM 409 (our internship class), which counts toward their 12 credits of electives.

  • This work can be paid work you are already doing. For example, if you get paid to manage social media for a local business, you can talk to our internship advisor to see if that work can also count as credits toward your degree.  
  • This can also be work specifically you sign up to perform specifically as an internship. For example, if you serve as an intern for one of our campus departments, and that internship is related to Communication Studies in some way, you can possibly earn credit in our department for this work.

Reasons you should consider completing an internship before you graduate

  1. Internships are a great chance to meet credit requirements. Internship credits count toward the 60 credits you need for the major and the 24 credits you need for the minor.
  2. Internship positions are available on-campus and at local businesses around town, so these positions might work best for your schedule and your transportation needs. 
  3. Internships are a wonderful way to connect with others and network, which is a vital part of the job search process. 
  4. Internship experiences help build a resume. Many jobs require or prefer applicants to have experience in the field to be eligible for a full-time position. Completing an internship is a great way to gain experience while also working toward your degree. 
  5. Internships are a fun and engaging way to learn. Because these positions are hands on, you’ll learn by actually doing and making the communication messages we discuss in the classroom. 
  6. Internships are a great way to develop an understanding of what you like and what you want in the life and careers you pursue. 
  7. Many internships offer financial compensation, making it possible to both get a paycheck and earn credit at the same time. 
  8. Internships can often lead to full time positions and career opportunities. In addition to providing key networking opportunities, many of our graduates are offered permanent positions after completing their internship.

How do I find an internship?

The Communication Studies Department will make every effort to keep students informed about internship opportunities on campus and in our local community. To make sure you receive this information, make sure you are subscribed to our department email list and follow us on Instagram

However, students are ultimately responsible for finding and applying for internships. Remember, part-time and full-time jobs related to the field of communication studies can count toward an internship, so job boards are a great place to look. You can also find these opportunities via Handshake, the WOU program for job and internship opportunities.

The Communication Studies department also keeps a running list of organizations students can ask about internship opportunities. This list is designed to get you thinking only. The organizations and contacts are not guaranteed to have internships available. The list is visible to students using a WOU login.

If you want help finding internships, you can discuss this with your advisor or with the WOU Service Learning and Career Development office. This office can help you find internships, create resumes and cover letters, and practice your interviewing skills.

How do I apply for COM 409 internship credits?

To Qualify for the COM 409 internship course, students must meet the following criteria. If you don’t meet all criteria but would like to discuss your unique situation with our internship coordinator to see if you can still be approved, please email Dr. Alex Curry at currya@wou.edu. 

  • Be a Communication Studies major or minor
  • Have a GPA of 3.0 or better in all COM classes taken
  • Have completed at least 24 credit hours of COM courses
  • Complete the COM 409 Application. You will need the following information to complete this form: 
    • Description of your internship
    • Contact information for your internship supervisor, including email address and phone number.
    • Your resume. If you want help creating or editing your resume, the Service Learning and Career Development office has free resume services. 
    • The number of credits you anticipate earning in this internship. During a 10-week term, students must work 3 hours per week per COM 409 credit hour. So, if you want to earn 4 credits of COM 409 for your internship, you would work 12 hours per week. Students can earn a total of 8 credits of COM 409. 

Once your application has been approved, you will receive instructions for how to enroll in COM 409. 

How are internships graded?

  • COM 409 grades are be based on the following two criteria:
    • Midterm and end-of-term feedback from your internship supervisor
    • Your submission of a portfolio project at the end of the term following the successful conclusion of your internship
  • Grades are assigned as “pass” or “no pass”

 

Who can I contact with questions about internships?

If you have questions, you can contact Dr. Alex Curry at currya@wou.edu or talk to your advisor. 

Where have past students completed internships?

Entercom Radio (KGON, KFXX, and KYCH)
Portland Beavers
KLOG 1490 AM (Sports Radio)
Portland Trail Blazers
Greenpeace
Luckiamute Watershed Council
Idaho Wine Commission
VanNatta Public Relations
KLYC Radio
Corvallis Clinic (P.R.)
Relay for Life
Oregon Watershed Council
State of Oregon–Medicaid and Elderly Benefits Office
Oregon Pioneer PAC
Oregon Sports Authority
U.S. Bank
Umpqua Bank
Intuit Social Media
Rogue Ales
Monmouth/Independence Chamber of Commerce
Paul Evans Legislative Campaign
Sunglass Hut
Oregon Department of Education
Polk County District Attorney’s Office
Monmouth-Independence Chamber of Commerce
Salem-Keizer Volcanoes
KATU-TV, Portland, OR
The Center for Sharing, Walla Walla, WA
Clear Channel Communications/Z100 Radio Station
Black Rock Mountain Bike Association
The Corvallis Clinic
Oregon State Legislature
Sun Retirement Corporation
City of Astoria Public Works
PCUN
Eola Hills Winery
Salem Dream Center
Sable House
Jensen Arctic Museum
Cummins Northwest
End of the Oregon Trail Visitors’ Center
Lifestyles Corporation
Chemeketa Community College, TRIO Program
US Army (Recruitment)
Eye Health Northwest
Eugene (OR) Downtown Athletic Club
Salem-Keizer Volcanoes Baseball Club Operations Office
Rumblefish Records, Portland, OR
Salem Boys and Girls Club
KGW Television, Portland, OR
Oregon Public Broadcasting
Grace Baptist Church, Hudson, MA
Peter Jacobson Productions
Columbia County Education Campus
Oregon Department of Human Resources (Clackamas Co.)
Congresswoman Darlene Hooley (Salem Office)
Campus Crusade for Christ (Portland & D.C. Office)
Dane Barrows & Associates
Crosswater Golf Club, Sunriver, OR
McMinnville Police Department
City of Salem Parks and Recreation Department
International Intern, London, England Mayor’s Office
Polk Co. Commission for Children and Families
Tahan Advertising, Portland, OR
Oregon Trail Lawyers Association
International Intern, University of Cape Coast, Ghana
Rep. Peter Defazio’s Office, Eugene, OR
Polk Co. Commission for Children and Families
KATU-TV, Portland, OR
The Center for Sharing, Walla Walla, WA
Oregon State Legislature
WOU Admissions Office
WOU Residence Administration & Marketing
WOU Alumni Foundation
WOU Sports Information
WOU Public Relations
WOU Study Abroad
WOU University Advancement