English Department

Internship Coordinator

Dr. Virginia Blanton


What is an internship?

An internship is an on-site work experience in your field of study or career interest.

Why is an internship a good idea?

You can enhance your career prospects by gaining real-world experience on the job. You can also develop new skills, find ways to adapt existing skills to new environments, test your aptitude for work in a given career, and begin building a career network to help you land a job after graduation.

How do I know if I can use internship credit towards my major plan of study?

You are encouraged to speak with an English advisor early in your plan of study, should you want to earn academic credit for an internship. It’s not too early to start planning for an internship during your first or second semester, with the idea that you will include it in your plan of study during your junior or senior year.

Do I need to enroll in academic credit for an internship?

Some on-campus internships (such as our department’s Publication Practicum) require enrollment, but for others it is optional. The Department offers on-campus Publication Practicums, with course numbers for undergraduates and graduate students: ENGLISH 449A/ENGLISH 5549A, ENGLISH 449B/ENGLISH 5549B, and ENGLISH 449C/5549C. Course credit for all other internships is available through ENGLISH 448/ENG 5548. In order to enroll, please seek permission from the English Department Internship Coordinator.

How many hours will I have to work for an internship?

If you are earning academic credit, you are expected to work 75 hours per 1 credit hour of internship. For a three-credit internship, that would be 225 hours over the course of a semester. If you are not earning academic credit, the internship hours and duration can be worked out with the employer.

Are all internships paid?

No, in fact, many internships in the humanities are not paid, but some offer a small stipend or hourly wage.

Does the Department of English have internships every semester, including summer session?

Some on-campus internships are recurring each semester; others are ad hoc and are only available one time. We share information about new internships through student listservs, on bulletin boards, and through the English Department advising office. Students are also encouraged to seek out internships through UMKC Career Services’ e-commerce platform Handshake, online job search databases, and networking opportunities.

Are internships guaranteed for all students?

Unfortunately, we know of a small number of internships, and these are highly competitive.

How can I position myself to be competitive for an internship?

Earning excellent grades is important, as is developing relationships with faculty and department advisors, participating in extracurricular activities, and taking on leadership roles. Even without job experience, if you have a record of volunteering or community engagement, this can help. You will also need to develop an excellent resume and cover letter. UMKC’s Career Services staff will also assist in developing resumes and cover letters to help you stand out when applying for an internship. Finally, it is important to practice your interview skills and be ready when you are invited to interview.

What internships have UMKC English majors taken up recently?

  • American Educational History Journal, academic journal
  • The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation, academic journal
  • New Letters, literary magazine
  • Public Health Nursing, academic journal
  • Andrews McMeel Publishing, press releases and social media
  • Children’s Center for the Visually Impaired, library inventory
  • Disabled But Not Really, grant writing
  • UMKC Foundation Office, grant writing
  • UMKC Swinney Recreation, marketing
  • UMKC Women’s Center, social media
  • New Letters on the Air, writing, transcription, research
  • Wildwood Outdoor Education Center, archival writing

Who do I contact for more information?

For more information, please contact the English Department Internship Coordinator.