"…I was totally not expecting to get an internship, my first professional experience in the field, doing exactly what I wanted to be doing: reading and editing content...even if you don’t think you want to be an editor or in publishing or working for an academic journal, you definitely strengthen your skills as a writer in this internship when you review submissions, and you have to be extremely organized when dealing with spreadsheets and subscribers and mailing...I have learned so much during my time at the South Asian Review, and as I will be living in the area next year, I have considered potentially coming in once in awhile to help in any way I can as I have become so attached to the place and really just want to see it continue to thrive.”
Video Game Journalism Intern, Odd Tale Studios
“...the internship was a success...my experience there actually helped me land a paid internship at a company I’m very excited to be working with called FlockU...I learned a lot from my time at Odd Tale Studios, and I’m excited to see where the writing skills I’ve cultivated there and will cultivate at FlockU over the summer will take me in my future endeavors.”
Shakespearean Website, Borrowers & Lenders
“My time with Borrowers & Lenders has been a positive experience. I had the opportunity to learn a skill I otherwise never would have had the chance to do. Once I really understood what I was doing with the coding, everything flowed. I enjoyed reading through the fun variety of essays for the journal and I always felt a small swell of pride whenever I uploaded to the website and my page came up without a problem.”
Library Archives and Special Collections Assistant, Saint Joseph's University
"My boss was an exceptional resource for me and completely had my best interest in mind with all the tasks he assigned me...I was able get an overview of almost every branch in an academic library which was an amazing opportunity and helped me decide that this was the career I wanted to pursue."
Editorial Assistant, South Asian Review
“It ended up being such a unique experience where every day brought something different (except for the formatting days, but that added a break of stability every now and then). I think that’s one of the key perks of jobs in which an English degree mindset is necessary; every day presents new challenges, which is good for a mind which thrives on new experiences...When I first started out I also definitely did not think that I would eventually be put in such a position of leadership...However, this also led to me to learn to become much more open with those I worked with, which was an excellent experience all around, as I feel I made some great long term friends and gained much experience.”
Publishing and Teaching Intern, The Telling Room, Portland, Maine (non-profit writing center for children and teens)
"When I began this journey, I never expected to enjoy it as much as I have... What a joy it was, then, to discover not only a place in which I could dedicate my esteem, but which ignited a passion which I've rarely encountered. The Telling Room, and the serendipitous way in which I came to know it, assured me of a future, which I not only doubted for far too long, but too readily accepted as my lot in life... There's a sense of wonder, still, filling me with joy. I can't wait to see what this wonderful place becomes next. I can't wait to see who I become within it. I wrote [during the] semester that 'I've never witnessed the future being formed before, but this week I could feel it.' As I stand here, at the metaphorical end of my journey, I can't help but reiterate that statement. It's not just the future that I see in the kids every single day, not just the future I see in the publishing department and the organization as a whole, but it's the future I can see in myself. I can literally feel it - and it feels like home."
Editorial Intern, Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency
“I learned a lot about the publishing industry, critiquing people’s stories, writing my own stories, and my own self-worth by working at Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency. This was an excellent experience, and I enjoyed every second of it. This internship only increased my interest in publishing and if given the opportunity, I would like to continue working in the industry.”
Guest Relations and Social Media Intern, Lehigh Valley Zoo
“I would highly recommend other students to an internship with the Lehigh Valley Zoo because you learn a lot about yourself throughout the time spent there and let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want to spend a summer surrounded by some cute animals along the way?”
Correspondent Intern, and promoted to Executive Director of U.S. Division, The Organization for World Peace
“It is important to be able to adapt and be accessible to the general public, which I had to do at The OWP. Having to adapt to their style and rules helped me grow as a writer and make me more adaptable, a skill that will help me greatly in grad school and, eventually, in the workplace. Second, it taught me responsibility and time management.
As Executive Director, my tasks are more administrative. I handle applications through Handshake, I manage the U.S. Division’s email, respond to email, correspond with the rest of the Board of Directors, share any messages from them and the editing team to my interns, prepping new interns to start, help interns who are moving to different roles to transition, and other similar tasks. It is safe to say that my promotion to Executive Director really took me out of my comfort zone. It still continues to do so, and likely will for months to come. Despite this, I am infinitely glad to have been afforded this opportunity.
I have some advice as well as “do’s and don’ts” for future English students who are taking on internships. First, don’t sell yourself short. I never believed I would be capable of taking on a leadership position like Executive Director, but I have, and to great success (I think, at least). I took a chance on applying for that position, and it has paid off ten-fold. So whatever you think you are and aren’t capable of, throw it out the window. Start fresh. Create new expectations. Be ready to spread your wings and learn more about yourself than you thought possible. In this same vein, don’t take on an easy internship just because. Challenge yourself. Push yourself to the limits of what you think you can handle, because you might be surprised what you learn.”
“My internship was at Heritage Conservancy at Aldie Mansion in Doylestown. Heritage Conservancy is a nationally accredited land trust that conserves and preserves the natural and historic landscape of Bucks County. The one thing I would pass on to future interns is to do something that you genuinely care about. Part of what made my internship so successful was that it was fulfilling. I got to test my skills in a professional environment and I got to work for an organization that I care about. My suggestion would be to do your research and take some time to consider what you care about, and what makes you happy. Pick an organization or a company that you feel aligns with your personal goals and apply!
For those who have yet to work in a professional environment, I would say that an in-person internship is a must. It’s a great way to learn how you fit within the office dynamic and to get a feel for what works for you, and what doesn’t. Finally, I would encourage all interns to advocate for themselves at their internships. I quickly learned that it was important to let my supervisor and fellow staff members know what I had accomplished, and to demonstrate the full extent of my abilities. This allowed me to get the most out of my internship and end my experience feeling accomplished.”
Communications Intern, Fringe Arts
“For my English internship, I had the pleasure of being the Communications Intern for FringeArts, a radical performing arts institution in Old City Philadelphia. As the Communications Intern, I became the written identity of FringeArts for the semester. Being supported by the Marketing team, I contributed to the FringeArts voice, whether that is in blogs, social media, or Campus Philly feature articles. It was never a dull moment, as I always had something to work on, and if I didn’t have something to work on, I would ask to be assigned a new project.
The best part of the internship, like I said, was the community. Despite most of our work being independent work, this internship was able to make us interns feel included in everything and feel like we were part of a team. My best advice when it comes to an in-person internship like this is to ask questions and put yourself out there. You’ll be surprised with what you can accomplish by just talking to people and letting them know your situation. For those struggling with internships, keep applying and working hard. You may not get what you originally wanted, but you could be pleasantly surprised with the end outcome.”
After-School Activities Intern/Workshop Leader, Mighty Writers North
“It is certainly hard to pick a favorite aspect of working with Mighty Writers; if I had to, it would be the kids. I helped with several workshops—including one focused on girls and female empowerment—and field trips. In doing so, I talked to numerous kids between the ages of 7-17 and had the opportunity to connect with them. More importantly, I was able to learn from them...Because I am extremely passionate about Mighty Writers and their mission, I was never bored or unsatisfied. I truly value my work as a Mighty volunteer, and I believe my time spent helping the kids and the organization in general was a success.”
Public Library Intern, Glenside Public Library
“I found my internship at the Glenside Area Public Library this semester to be extremely rewarding, particularly because it was a helpful step between being a weekly library volunteer, as I have been for many years leading up to this internship, and starting classes in Library Science at the graduate level...My passion for libraries and their growth is something that I cannot wait to spend my adult life dedicated to. Getting to work on the PA Forward Star program in particular, ensuring that libraries get the funding they need and sharing this wealth of knowledge...was a great way to end my college career.”