Internships & Job Placement

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SJMC students enjoy a 92 percent job placement rate 6 months after graduation. Part of that success comes from a strong commitment to preparing students for the real world through course work. SJMC students also gain the skills they need to join the workforce through internships.

Internships

Students are encouraged to complete at least one internship during their studies at the SJMC. Every semester, our students intern everywhere from local newspapers to national and international syndicates in places like Chicago, New York, Hollywood and beyond.

Read about some of those experiences here.

To help students in their search and acquisition of internships, Internship and Placement Coordinator Paul Jensen arranges for on-campus interviews and special training in search and interview strategies. During the academic seasons, he also compiles newsletters of job and internship openings sent to all majors. Paul meets regularly with students to assist with finding internships and job leads. Please e-mail paul-w-jensen@uiowa.edu if you would like to schedule a meeting.

Internship credit does not fulfill requirements for the major, but it does count toward the maximum 48 s.h. of journalism and mass communication credit an undergraduate student may apply toward the degree. Students may take additional internships for no credit through CCP:1019 Internship in Journalism.

Graduate students may not receive course credit for internships, though MA students are invited to work with the internship coordinator to find opportunities.

In addition to internships, student-operated media—including The Daily Iowan and KRUI-FM radio—provide students with opportunities for journalism experience on campus.

Register an Internship for Credit

JMC:2100 Journalism Internship (1-3 hours credit, pass/fail grade)

Each SJMC undergraduate may register for JMC:2100 for a total of 3 hours credit, provided he/she:

Course credit is based on the number of hours the student will work:

  • 300 hours of internship work = 3 credit hours
  • 200 hours of internship work = 2 credit hours
  • 100 hours of internship work = 1 credit hour

Credit for JMC:2100 does not count toward the 36 hours needed to graduate in journalism, but it does count toward the maximum of 48 SJMC hours majors are allowed to take, and toward the total of 120 hours they need to graduate from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Students registering an internship for credit during the fall or spring semester should choose a faculty adviser who will monitor the internship and award a pass-fail grade. During the summer, the internship and assessment coordinator may advise students registered for credit.

Examples of professional activities:

  • For a Print Media Internship: rewriting a press release, localizing a wire feed, writing news or feature stories, editing printed work, researching material for stories, interviewing sources, and learning about the medium
  • For a Broadcast Internship: learning how to operate equipment and use technology, editing, writing material for broadcast, researching, interviewing sources, and learning about the medium
  • For a PR Internship: writing releases, stories, or other texts, designing public materials, researching, editing, photography, event planning, general administration, and learning about the profession

Students are also encouraged to register internships for no credit through the UI Career Center.

Internship Checklist

Before the internship begins:

  • Make sure you are eligible and that your internship meets all requirements.
  • Decide whether it’s best to register for credit or no credit.
  • Find a faculty member to serve as your advisor.
  • Give your advisor and the internship coordinator your contact information, site name and address, supervisor name and telephone number, dates of the internship, and a job description.
  • Get a special permission number from the internship coordinator and register for the internship on MyUI—or, if the semester has already begun, use an add slip.

During the internship:

  • Be a professional and look for opportunities to develop your skills.
  • E-mail weekly updates to your advisor, describing your activities as well as your biggest success, your biggest problem, any other problems you had, what you learned in SJMC that helped you, and things you wish you had learned in SJMC.
  • Keep these updates in a journal, and keep copies of all your professional work.
  • Fill out a two-week evaluation when you receive it.

At the end of the internship:

You must provide your advisor with:

  • An updated resume
  • A list of all the activities you were involved in as part of the internship
  • A 2–3 page reflective essay

Your advisor may require:

  • A meeting to discuss your experience
  • A sample of your professional work
  • Other work he or she feels is appropriate

Grading:

You will earn a grade of satisfactory if your advisor determines that you have fulfilled the hours requirement, engaged in sufficient professional activities, documented and reflected on these activities adequately, and received satisfactory evaluations from your site supervisor.

Job Placement

The school's internship and placement coordinator helps students seeking career guidance and employment opportunities. The school posts notices of professional jobs open to journalism students and graduates and publicizes them on its electronic mailing list. It cooperates with the Pomerantz Career Center in providing career guidance and placement services as well as workshops and programs on job-seeking skills.

See also: Journalism Job Resources