March 20, 2013

U of L Communication Department presents inaugural internship fair

UofL offers an opportunity for students to receive practical work experience.

By Wes Kerrick–

UofL offers an opportunity for students to receive practical work experience.

Students of all majors will have the opportunity tomorrow to meet with potential employers at the communication department’s first internship fair. Representatives of over twenty companies will be in the Red Barn from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Communication professor Stuart Esrock, who serves as the department’s internship director, says experience is one of the most important things students should pursue. For communication majors, internships can be key in their quest for a job. “We want to do everything we can to encourage students to get these kinds of practical work experience,” he said.

The internship fair is the brainchild of Mackenzie Adriance, a graduate assistant with the Career Development Center. Adriance, who holds a bachelor’s degree in communication, said the idea came out of her experience helping students transition into their professional careers. “It’s my goal,” she said, “to make sure that students have access and are aware of opportunities that are available to them.”

Communication Professor Mary Ashlock wrote in an email that students who have one or more internships have a competitive edge. “Employers want students to tell them and show them what they have done.”

Adriance said she took the idea to senior communication major Aimee Jewell, president of U of L’s Integrated Communications Club. The two presented their plan to communication faculty.

“I was thrilled about the idea of an internship fair!” wrote Ashlock, the club’s faculty advisor, calling Adriance and Jewell “role models and mentors” for communication students.

“We were delighted,” Esrock said.

Adriance said the fair will help students overcome the challenge of contacting potential employers to find internships. “It’s just easier than kind of looking at a daunting list.”

“I hope both the students and the employers have a ‘win-win’ experience at the internship fair,” Ashlock wrote. “How often can you go to one place for two hours and interact with employers who want to talk with you?”

Adriance said she and Jewell found companies for the fair by looking in the communication department’s database. “We just looked for people who were advertising for interns and reached out to them.”

The Career Development Center will host a university-wide career fair on March 27 at the Brown & Williamson Club inside Papa John’s Cardinal Stadium. Targeted to juniors and seniors, this fair will help students find potential jobs in a wide variety of fields.

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Photo courtesy of The Louisville Cardinal

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