COM 491 • Internship

About the course

Internships are a way for you to take some of the things you’ve learned at Saint Joseph’s and the Communication Studies Department into the workplace. Ideally your college education and internship(s) will help guide you toward a career and life with purpose. This class is required for internships that carry credit and my job here is to help you put your internship into a larger context.

We will listen/read/watch some stuff about careers and look at some examples and advice on how work might fit into a purposeful life. We can also use our weekly online chats to talk about more day-to-day issues you face (things like networking, business etiquette etc.).

My professional experience outside of the university is a journalist. I was a foreign correspondent for the Associated Press and Agence France-Presse and newspapers in Eastern Europe and the Caribbean. I usually worked out of cafés and on trains, so to be honest I never really had an office job to negotiate until I started working at Saint Joseph’s. But I think many of the meta skills of networking etc. are part of any career. So we can talk about those as well career paths etc.


• To share and discuss work experience, skills and expertise gained during the internship experience.

• To understand more deeply the concept of work-life balance and a “purposeful” career.


We will meet in person on Thursdays or Fridays in Bronstein. Here are the groups:

Thursday – 2-3
Colleen – Olde City Tatoo
Kat – Devine and Partners
Sara S. – Center City Film and Video
Maria D. –
Friday – 3-4
Danielle – The Center for Returning Citizens
Sara L. – WMMR
Kerry – WMMR
Megan –
Mackenzie – Slice Communications
Nicole – Philadelphia Magazine
Matt – 6ABC


Participation (weekly meetings and attendance at 3 of 5 career salons)
You are required to attend (online) one weekly meeting (45 minutes- one hours) and 3 of the 5 career salons during the semester.  25 percent

Career salon 
You and your group are required to organize one career salon during the semester. This includes establishing contact with speaker(s), organizing their participation and reserving space at Bronstein and refreshments. Inaddition, you are required to attend two career salons other than the one you organize. 25 percent

Alumni profile – Due 12-16, 5 p.m.
You will create an online profile of a Communication Studies graduate that will go on the department website. This will be a Q&A by email and include at least one photo. We will work together to find an alumna/us to profile. 25 percent

• Final internship presentations

You will deliver a five-minute Ignite-style talk about your internships for other COM students. 25 percent


Week 1 – Sept. 22/23

Week 2 – Sept. 29/30

Watch Steve Jobs, How to Live Before You Die

Week 3 – Oct. 6/7

Ruth Chang, How to Make Hard Choices

Week 4 – Oct. 13/14

Career Salon – Colleen and Kat

Free period – Oct. 13

Week 5 – Oct. 20/21

Career Salon – Sara S. and Maria D. 

Week 6 – Oct. 27/28

Watch Melody Hobson: Color blind or color brave?

Week 7 – Nov. 3/4

Career Salon – Danielle and Matt

Week 8 – Nov. 10/11

Career salon – Nicole and Mackenzie

Week 9 – Nov. 17/18

Career salon – Sara L. – Kerry

Read: How not to get a job at theSkimm 

theSkimm is an e-mail newsletter and a really smart company. This may not be your thing, but the advice here applies to pretty much any job. I think a “what not do” in a job interview is always helpful.

Career Salon 

Week 10 – Thanksgiving

Week 11 – Dec. 1/2

Watch Susan Colantuono, The Career Advice You Probably Didn’t Get

Career Salon – Megan and Chris

Week 12 – Dec. 8/9

Watch Angela Lee Duckworth, The Key to Success? Grit

Week 13

Internship presentations