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According to a March 2013 article in The Chronicle of Higher Education, employers want college graduates who have professional experience and who can demonstrate “basic workplace proficiencies, like adaptability, communication skills, and the ability to solve complex problems.” Simultaneously, prospective employees need to know “how to analyze large amounts of data [and] construct a cogent argument.” The UTA Department of English provides our students with these kinds of skills.
To help our students make the transition from university life to the professional world, we maintain an internship program for junior and senior English majors. Students have the opportunity to gain professional, real world experience in using the skills they develop in the classroom.
Internships are classes in which students earn course credit in ENGL 4390 (Internship in English) while working with a professional organization. These courses are practicums rather than lectures: students practice their skills in a professional context and environment. In ENGL 4390, you will work with the organization in question rather than attending a traditional class, and you will work on various projects and duties relating to your internship with that organization.
We try to frame our internships so that they require the same amount of time every week as students would spend in studying, reading, and attending a conventional 3-hour lecture course: on average, 10-12 hours. However, the precise hours may vary from internship to internship.
Internships help distinguish job seekers from their competition by giving them actual work experience in their fields before they graduate. Internships can help students make their resumes and cover letters stand out from others and can give students great experiences to talk about during interviews.
Internships can also help students transition from an academic, university mindset to a professional one. Students can learn about working with companies and professional organizations and about using their skills in those contexts.
Our students have interned with many DFW area organizations, including
Anchor Marketing & Design
Arlington Public Library
Computers in Composition Digital Press
Fort Worth Magazine
Fort Worth Weekly
Meals On Wheels, Inc. of Tarrant County
The Museum of International Cultures
UTA College of Liberal Arts
UTA Department of English
UTA Office of Information Technology
The English Department has several ongoing internship opportunities for our students, but students who successfully apply for internships with outside organizations can also use ENGL 4390 (Internship in English) for course credit.
We also recommend that students take advantage of the services offered by The Lockheed Martin Career Development Center at The University of Texas at Arlington, especially their Handshake service. This service allows students to set up a professional profile they can use to search and apply for jobs and internships. The Career Development Center helped students complete over 7,000 internships during the 2016-2017 Academic Year.
Jolie Kesler secured a paid internship with Anchor Marketing & Design in Fort Worth, Texas, and she focused on marketing, copywriting, and social media outreach. After she graduated, Kesler accepted a full-time position with Anchor.
Meagan Solomon worked as a Teaching Intern with Arlington Public Library’s Literacy House (now Arlington Reads), gaining professional experience in education as well as lesson and curriculum design. She is presently a PhD candidate at Texas Christian University.
Raelea Sutton worked as a Computers in Composition Digital Press Fellow during her final semester, working to develop online editorial content for the Digital Press’s marketing blog. She has since begun working at Pioneer Natural Resources in Irving, Texas as a contract technical writer.
Diego Ramirez worked as an Advising Intern with the Department of English, helping organize our first ever English Majors Day and presenting a report on recruitment and retention efforts in the Department. He has since begun working as an Academic Advisor with the UTA College of Education.
Lacie Davis worked as a Volunteer Recruitment Intern with the Arlington Public Library, helping market the Library to current and prospective volunteers while also working on a variety of duties relating to data reporting and library services. She has since begun working with Alphalete Marketing in Arlington, Texas.
Students must have the following qualifications:
Some internships in ENGL 4390 may count for the Technical Writing and Professional Communication program through the Department of English: whether yours does so depends on what kind of internship you complete.
We have worked to secure several internship opportunities for our students. Take a look at our most recent informational booklet (PDF format).
In addition, students can find outside internship opportunities within the community, and the informational document outlines several of them. We sometimes advertise internship opportunities on our social media, too. Furthermore, students should take advantage of The Lockheed Martin Career Development Center at The University of Texas at Arlington.
Take note: outside opportunities require students to apply to the organization in question, and the organization makes the decision whether to offer the student an internship. If you receive such an internship, please contact Dr. Worlow (firstname.lastname@example.org) and your English advisors to learn how to enroll in ENGL 4390.
The following table shows priority deadlines for applying for internships through the Department of English. If you apply after these deadlines, then you may not necessarily receive permission to enroll in ENGL 4390, or you may not be able to pursue the internship you want. University policy requires we have a signed Agreement on file with the organization before the term begins, so we must have enough time to fulfill this requirement.
|Spring Semester Internships||First week of November|
|Summer 11-Week Internships||First week of April|
|Fall Semester Internships||First week of July|
We always appreciate hearing from DFW area organizations interested in providing our students internship opportunities. The Internship Coordinator, Dr. Christian Worlow, works to ensure students are well matched to each internship and works with organizations to ensure prospective interns meet their desired qualifications.
We do ask employers to consider how they can offer professionalization, training, and mentorship opportunities for interns and to consider if a qualified student would meet their needs. Although all students must work with the organization to determine an appropriate schedule, students should never miss other classes to fulfill internship responsibilities.
The Internship Coordinator welcomes discussion about the internship program and to review internship job descriptions. We ask for detailed qualifications and internship outlines to help ensure we match the best qualified students with your organization. You can use this form (in RTF/Rich Text Format) as a template and email it and any inquiries to Dr. Worlow (email@example.com). Dr. Worlow makes our initial decision whether to pursue an internship opportunity based on whether an internship would benefit our students. However, please note that it is also our students’ decision whether to pursue a specific internship, so we can never guarantee interns will be available during any specific semester.
All internships with outside organizations require an Internship Affiliation Agreement signed by authorized parties at UTA and the organization or a signed Service Learning Agreement for service learning opportunities with non-profit organizations.
As our internships are for course credit, they last for the entirety of a semester period: Spring (mid-January to early May), Summer (early June to early August), and Fall (mid-August to early December).