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 (COM) is committed to the belief that experiences which take students outside the traditional classroom situation are both desirable and educational. To that extent, the COM 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
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