Why do an internship?

How valuable is an internship? It can make the difference between getting a job after graduation or launching your career. Learning public relations, marketing, communications and media relations theory in the classroom is the foundation for familiarizing yourself with the tactics and strategies you will use in the field. But there is nothing that can compare to putting those theories into practice and cultivating a skillset as you develop your talents in the professional arena.

An internship offers you the opportunity to use what you have learned at the University of Albany in the “real world” before you graduate. It’s a chance to get practical experience; to ask questions and get advice from those working in the field you want to be in. An internship also allows you to figure out if you don’t like that field before you have committed to a specific job.

You will get the most out of an internship if you do three things: set your expectations for what you want out of the internship experience, focus on goals that you determine before starting the internship and treat each and every thing you learn during the internship as a valuable life lesson in helping you make your career decisions.

Sounds like the start of a joke but it’s not. Two people walk into a job interview with the same college degree, strong interviewing skills and they both present well. One has done an internship and has a portfolio to show what she learned and the skillset she developed; the other says he’s a quick learner and will be the best person for the job. Who would you hire?

Mary Rozak, Director of Communications, Office of the Albany County Executive

Meet Some Of Our Student Interns

Richard Hartman

Richard Hartman, from Pleasantville, interned with the Lark Street Business Improvement District (BID) in Spring 2015. His work ranges from Neighborhood Marketing, and Special Events and Promotions, to working with businesses to effectively build, sustain, and enhance a unique and prosperous living and business community for the residents, visitors, and merchants of the Lark Street Neighborhood of Albany, NY.

Alden Fung

Alden Fung ‘15 interned with AFLAC in Fall 2015. Here he is working at a career fair during his last semester at UAlbany.

Avi Solkoff

As a junior in 2015, Avi Solkoff interned with Campus Center Connections at UAlbany. He worked on social media posts and creating/posting event flyers. He also designed an informative video for student government groups detailing how to use the Virtual Event Management System, an on-campus reservation system.

Liza Morgan

Senior in 2016
Liza Morgan, a senior student athlete from Pennsylvania, is interning for Capital Roots in Troy, NY. She’s pictured at a recent presentation addressing influencers in social media within Capital Roots, a non-profit nourishing healthy communities with access to fresh and affordable food. 

Jervaun Higgs

Jervaun Higgs ’15 of Mount Vernon interned at the Office of the Albany County Executive in Spring 2015. Among his duties was video editing the Honor-a-Veteran Ceremony.

Tracy Ormsbee,
Senior Editor, Times Union

In recent years we’ve been extremely pleased with the quality interns coming through the University at Albany journalism and English programs. While it is certainly a learning experience for them, we put them right to work on real projects, anything from researching and double checking listings to video and social media to covering events and doing interviews. Interns are able to perform these tasks at varying levels, but by the end of the internship, we’ve been very pleased with what they are able to contribute to the Times Union.

Professor William Husson,
Communication Internship Coordinator:

Doing a communication internship enables students to participate in the workplace activities of professional communicators. It is a learning experience on multiple levels. First, an internship allows students to observe the convergence between communication theory - what has been learned in the classroom - and professional communication practice. Second, an internship helps students become skilled in the kinds of professional communication activities their work site colleagues perform. Third, the internship experience enables students to make better-informed decisions about the professional paths they would like to follow after graduation.

Rosemary Armao,
Journalism Program Director:

Internships are the second essential along with classroom instruction to a complete journalism education. Every student in the UAlbany Journalism Program is encouraged to seek out and secure an apprentice-job with one of the dozens of newspapers, TV and radio stations, PR offices, government and advocacy agencies that take in our students and help turn them into professionals. On the job, you'll put into practice what you studied in classes, see where the gaps in your abilities are, and find the niche in the media field where you best fit.