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Frank E. Parcells, Ph. D., Professor
  Department of Communication
      Austin Peay State University
Essential Internship Tools
Preparing a Resume                    Preparing for An Interview
 A resume is your tool to get an      A resume is your first step to an
    interview for an internship.          interview invitation for an
   Keep the resume simple.               internship.
   Keep it informative about you.       Both cover letter and resume
   Limit it to one page.                 must be persuasive; persuade
   Remember, experience is even          the internship representative to
    more important than your              invest in an interview for you.
    education in the                     Keep the cover letter short.
    communication industry!
                                         The letter must hi-lite your
   Consider all of your experience
    including all your relevant           strengths.
    events and activities.               The letter must reference your
   Offer references on a separate        contact and availability
    sheet and not in your resume.         information.
Resume & Letter Building for Internship
                   William Jones                              William Jones
                  1111 Jones Road                             1111 Jones Road
                 Hopkinsville, KY                             Hopkinsville, KY
                   (270) 591-2030
                                 December 15, 2010

EXPERIENCE                                                    Ms. Wilma Laughton
Use a bulleted listing of all appropriate work experience     KVB PR
and other non-work experiences which are relevant to this     Nashville, TN
internship opportunity (for example, sorority or fraternity
communication planning, special event planning, etc.).
You might also include special experiences (foreign study,    Dear Ms. Laughton,
other internships, etc.) if relevant to part of this
internship.                                                   Please note my attached resume as I am applying for the
                                                              internship you posted on the IABC Nashville website. I have the
EDUCATION                                                     qualification you have outlined and my past experience in public
List your university, major and minor, and major/minor        relations for the PR and Marketing Department at APSU along
and/or cumulative GPA (4.0 scale) if 3.0 or above. Include    with my work with my promotional work and newsletter editing
your GPA if it is 3.0 of higher on a 4.0 scale! Do not        with APSU Intercollegiate Athletics has provided me with
list high school!                                             essential entry-level skills. KVB-PR offers the perfect
                                                              opportunity for me to learn and practice public relations in a
SKILLS                                                        professional agency environment.
This is where you can identify in a bulleted listing your
relevant communication skills to the internship. These
might include such skills as MS Office, Adobe Premiere,       You can contact me weekdays at my cell phone (270) 591-2030 or
broadcast announcing, etc.                                    via email at

ACTIVITIES, AWARDS, & HONORS                                  I look for ward to an opportunity to meet with you in person.
Use this space to hi-lite any relevant awards, honors, or
activities you’ve earned or participated in during college.   Sincerely,

                                                              William Jones
•Be certain to follow up your letter and resume mailing with an email
message addressed to the contact person for your internship.
•Inquire whether or not he or she received your letter and resume.
•Thank him or her for the opportunity to apply for the internship.
•Inform the internship coordinator that you have attached a reference
list to assist him or her in reviewing your materials. Attach this file to
your email as a Microsoft Word document (.doc or .docx) or an Adobe
Acrobat file (.pdf).
•Offer to provide him or her with samples of your communication
work (regardless of what might be most appropriate such as news
releases, commercial copy, video productions, website designed) via
return email attachment OR offer an online location (URL) where he
or she can view or download the creative materials.
•Remind them that you are available and, again, look forward to the
chance to meet with them on a face-to-face basis.
•Always end with a “THANK YOU!”
Additional Contact Before Internship Interview
                     It’s wise to keep in regular
                      communication with your
                      internship contact person.
                     That said, do not overdo the
                      amount of added contact.
                     Any time your follow up with
                      another email message state a
                      legitimate reason for your re-
                     Offer the contact person more
                      information about your skills or
                      provide additional creative
                      works for them to evaluate.
•Keep your name in the memory
of the organization’s Internship
•Find legitimate reasons to re-
connect with the Internship
Coordinator via telephone or email.
•Potential re-connection reasons can
include sending additional work
samples (even unrequested), changes
in your existing or adding more
references, your own address, phone,
or email changes, or additional
questions and/or scheduling issues
you wish to put forward.
When You Receive an Initial Interview Invitation
 Respond quickly with both
  a “Thank You” email
  message and a “Thank
  You” letter or notecard.
 Clearly state your
  availability for the
  interview and your interest
  in the company and the
  internship position.
 Ask if the contact person
  would like any other
  information from you.
 Remember, you want to
  stand out from the
  others interviewees for
  this position!
•Always gather information about the organization before your
interview. This is your responsibility and it is almost always
expected by the organization and included in your interview.
Find the location and the easiest way for you to access it, including
parking. Familiarize yourself with the worksite well before your
scheduled interview time.
Familiarize yourself with the organization’s website. Ask yourself
essential questions: What do they do? Who does it? How do they do
it? How do I fit into the organization? the position?
Learn about the organization’s infrastructure. You can usually
begin right online. If you or your network contacts know someone at
the organization, talk to him or her.
Review organizational policy and procedures.
Look over the organization’s Human Resources “Job
Announcements” online to see what types of positions are currently
being filled.
If You Know The identity of Your
Interviewer, Research Him or Her
                 Be sure to check-0ut your
                  interviewer online if you know of
                  his or her identity. Look on
        ,, etc.
                  Search by name in
                 This can become a real advantage
                  if you research it properly.
                 Find out the interviewer’s
                  background including his or her
                  work experience, awards and
                  honors, and current position
                  within the organization.
                 Try to identify the interviewer’s
                  personal hiring preferences and
                  pay attention to these preferences
                  when preparing for the interview.
Try To Practice an Interview with A
Professor or Professional
 Remember that old adage, practice
  makes perfect? It does help when
  you are prepared for the internship
 Have a professor or professional
  review your written materials (cover
  letter and resume, portfolio,
  samples, etc.) and conduct a mock
  interview with you for practice.
 You won’t believe how much help
  this will be getting you ready for the
  actual interviewer.
Work on Your Responses to Different
Types of Interview Questions
• Try to keep your answers
  simple and directly to the
• Don’t offer more details
  than what was asked of
• Give examples of relevant
  experiences you’ve had
  when possible.
• Never volunteer
  information that may be
  irrelevant to the inquiry.
•Every Communication Arts major MUST have a portfolio displaying his or
her creative works.
•This portfolio should be available both electronically (on a CD or DVD) as
well as inside a notebook – neatly displaying samples of your creative works.
•This is an accepted and common practice in the communication industry
today for both job seekers and potential interns. All communication
professionals keep written and electronic portfolios up-to-date with their
work samples.
•As you progress throughout your communication studies, always keep
samples of your web design, commercial copy, feature stories, news releases,
audio and video productions, etc. and place them in your portfolios both
electronic and paper.
•This practice is as important as developing a resume!
    Portfolios Include Many Types of Samples
     Written & Design
                              Audio and Video Works
 News Releases                Produced or Voice-Over
 Pitch Letters                   Commercials
 Audio or Video Commercial      Documentaries
   Complete Print Design        Video News Releases
    Display Ads                  Corporate Videos (tours,
   Speech Writing                product/service
   Executive Summaries of        introductions)
    Communication Campaigns
                                 Other A-V Productions
   Signage or Promotional
    Materials                    PowerPoint Presentations,
   Newsletters                   emphasis on business
   Websites                      communication
Effective Use of Audio and Video
    Samples in Your Portfolio
                    Even Include Effective
                 If you’ve invested time
                  preparing effective visuals
                  such as tables or figures
                  (graphics) used in your
                  business presentations, be
                  certain to include them in
                  your portfolio samples.
                 Also, works you’ve
                  completed in your classes
                  may be useful examples of the
                  quality of your work.
Don’t Just Introduce Your Portfolio Yourself During an
  Interview; Make it Obvious and Available at Your
                Interviewer’s Request
 Bring your portfolio with
  you to your interview and
  have it displayed in such a
  way that the interviewer
  cannot help but notice it.
 Portfolios are especially
  important for interviews
  dealing with creative
  staffing positions such as
  photographers, video
  producers, graphic
  designers and Web
Appearance for Interviews
                Professional communicators expect
                 professional attire and looks from students
                 interviewing for internships.
                What does this mean? This means suit for
                 women and a sport coat, dress pants, and a
                 tie for men.
                What about facial hair and earrings for
                 men? These are distractions and serve no
                 purpose except for the interviewer to
                 ignore important content information
                 about you during the interview.. They
                 distort a male student’s image.
                What about piercings for men and women?
                 The advice here is against going to an
                 interview with any body piercings other
                 than women’s earrings.
Legal and Illegal Questions
• Generally, professional communicators interviewing students for
    internships or future employment do not ask illegal questions.
•   It is important for students to be aware of what can and what
    should not be asked of you in such an interview.
•   However, not responding to an interviewer’s question(s) will
    likely be cause for loss of the internship or employment
•   Protect yourself by making certain that the internship you are
    seeking is, in fact, a learning situation where you do not become
    free labor and a “gofer” for site supervisors. This means go for
    this or that.
•   The organization benefits from your “free labor” and in return,
    you MUST benefit from applied, on-the-job learning.
Anticipate Possible Internship Problems
                There is Always The Question
                   of Internship Liability
                 What happens if you are injured
                  on the job?
                 Who is responsible for your
                  injury? Is it the University? the
                  company you are interning with?
                  or yourself?
                 Ask the questions before you
                  accept the internship so that you
                  are prepared if some problem
                  develops that concerns your health
                  or safety during the internship.
    Know Your Rights and Protection
     Options During Your Internship
 You should search online for internship liability
  insurance which can be quite affordable for limited-
  time internships (10 or 20 hours per week for a 10-week
  summer term or even full semester).
 Check with your interning company (organization) to
  see what responsibilities for intern liability they
 Know your liability limitations so that you can
  determine your best action. Too much potential
  physical liability on the internship might make that
  internship unrealistic or impractical for you.
           University Statements About
          Internships & Health Insurance
  APSU Statement on                APSU Student Health
     Internships                    Insurance Available
The Communication                 The University has
Department offers the             contracted to provide, on a
opportunity for internships for   voluntary basis, sickness
                                  and accident insurance.
which students can earn credit    This plan, that includes
that applies toward the degree,   hospital and accident
but only 3 hours toward any       benefits, is available to full-
major program.                    time and part-time students
The Communication                 and their family members at
Department facilitates all
                                  a reasonable cost. Find out
                                  details on this insurance by
aspects of the internship and     going to the following
awards a grade when the           website for details:
internship is completed. Dr.      https://www.pearceandpear
Pam Gray is the Director of
Communication Internships.        TN/APSU/.
                APSU Liability Limitations
Austin Peay State University is    All claims should be filed with
not responsible for bodily         the Tennessee Claims
harm and/or death to               Commission. Forms for such
participants in any voluntary      claims may be obtained in the
organizations or activities,       University’s Affirmative
including but not limited to       Action Office. Members of the
voluntary athletics, intramural    University faculty and staff
recreation, hiking, karate,        may not be held liable unless
judo, skydiving, or other          personal negligence occurs.
activities in which risk is
incurred. Austin Peay State
University, as an agency of the
state of Tennessee, is NOT
liable for claims resulting from
injury and/or death incurred in
such participation.

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