Making the transition from backpacks to briefcases occurs quickly and often traumatically (Hinck & Dailey, 1993). One-moment students are dressed in blue jeans, listening to lectures on communication theories and working independently in the library; the next moment students are wearing business suits, focusing on product output and working interdependently with various corporate departments.
Internships help students make this "leap" from the academic culture to the business culture. Internships enable students to clarify their career goals, increase business contacts and become more successful at their positions (Gault, Redington, & Schlager, 2000). Additionally, recruiters value internship opportunities; in the survey, internships were listed as important elements to identify on a resume.
The Department of Communication and Dramatic Arts (CDA) is committed to the belief that experiences, which take students outside the traditional classroom situation, are both desirable and educational. To that extent, the CDA Internship program is designed to meet the following objectives:
*To apply the student's knowledge and skills of communication to
tasks found within an organization or business environment
*To recognize and identify communication skills essential to functioning
effectively in a professional context
*To enhance individual oral and written communication skills
*To interact within an organization and acquire an understanding
of the roles and functions of communication in an organization, the
relationship between formal and informal organizational communication
networks and what organizational qualities, characteristics, and strategies
facilitate effective communication within the organization.