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Bethel University student

Internships are a critical part of every student’s educational journey. They provide valuable work experience, an opportunity to explore career pathways and cultivate professional networks, and contribute to the host organization through an infusion of energy and new creative perspectives.

Internship Objectives

The communication studies internship is part of a required 3-4 credit course, COM481: it is designed as a learning/practicing experience in which students engage in a work-environment that applies and expands communication knowledge and skills in structured, off-campus settings. Those settings can include corporations, governmental agencies, social service agencies, television and radio stations, schools, ministry and non-profit organizations, research institutes, and churches, etc. 


The student must:

  • Be a declared major or minor in the Department of Communication Studies;
  • Be a junior with a minimum of 60 credit hours (20 credit hours in the department);
  • Have completed Perspectives on Human Communication (COM210) and relevant introductory courses in your emphasis; and
  • Exhibit the necessary motivation and intent to follow through with the internship demands.


In addition to providing helpful experiences for career planning and preparation for employment or graduate school, an acceptable internship should meet the following requirements:

  1. New experience. The internship experience must offer significantly new experience for the student. The internship is intended to be an opportunity to explore new areas, skills, or processes, try new jobs or functions within an organization, and work with new groups or populations.
  2. Communication-related. The internship should be communication-related in terms of providing opportunities to develop and/or apply communication knowledge and skills. A wide variety of internships could be considered “communication-related” in either function or industry affiliation.

The following are specific requirements for the internship:

  1. The internship needs to be approved by the COM481 instructor by completing the internship contract found in the Communication Studies Department Internship folder.
  2. In addition to working with the faculty instructor in the COM481 class, the student needs to have regular meetings with an appropriate on-site supervisor.
  3. The "Contract for Communication Department Internship" is expected to be completed, including all approvals and required signatures, by the add/drop deadline of the semester or summer session in which the internship is to take place. A digital copy of the signed contract needs to be submitted to the Internship Advisor and posted in the appropriate course assignment link.
  4. The student needs to spend a minimum of 135 hours (for a 3 credit internship; 180 hours for 4 credits) at the internship site during the term COM481 is taken. Subsequent internships may be taken for fewer than 3 credits.
  5. The internship is expected to last the duration of the semester or summer, even if you accumulate the minimum number of hours before the end of the term. Part of what takes place during an internship only happens over an extended period of time where skills are developed, relationships are formed, and comfort levels are reached with expectations and processes within an organization.
  6. The student must satisfactorily meet the requirements of the COM481 course (including reports and reflection assignments). 

Evaluation/Grading of COM481

The course will be graded S/U with "S" meaning satisfactory, a grade of 75% or better in the course. The course syllabus will contain specific requirements for both the internship site and course components of COM481.

Value of Internship Experience

An internship offers a critical opportunity to expose yourself to an industry or work setting in order to see if that type of work is a good fit for you, to acquire new skills from practical experience, and hone your soft skills (emotional intelligence and teamwork) so that you can become a colleague that adds value to the workplace. In addition, it offers a golden opportunity to develop your professional network of contacts that may turn into job referrals or letters of reference when you search for your first job. All of these elements improve your resume and serve to set you apart from the competition.

Example Internship Sites

Every year, our department places students in local, national, and international organizations, Fortune 500 companies, and top non-profits. Here are a few of the companies and organizations our students have interned for in recent years:

  • Allina Health
  • Arrive Ministries
  • Augustana Care, LLC
  • Boosterthon
  • CTV Roseville
  • Duluth Greater Downtown Council
  • Eaglebrook Church
  • Fellowship of Christian Athletes
  • FIVE Event Center
  • Frogtown/Summit Partnership
  • General Mills
  • Gift of Life Transplant House
  • Horizontal Digital, Inc.
  • iHeart Radio
  • Karen Organization of MN
  • KSTP/Hubbard Broadcasting
  • Land O’Lakes, Inc
  • Latitude Branding
  • LearningRx
  • MatrixCare, Inc.
  • Minnesota Children’s Museum
  • Minnesota Historical Society
  • Minnesota Twins
  • Minnesota United FC
  • NewBridge Health and Wellness
  • North Metro TV
  • Owatonna Area Chamber of Commerce
  • Periscope
  • PrairieCare
  • Pulse Ministries
  • Revolutionary Sports
  • Slate and Main Video Production
  • Southwest Christian High School
  • SportRadar
  • St. Judes Children’s Research Hospital
  • St. Paul Saints Baseball
  • The CW Twin Cities
  • Thrivent Financial
  • Tiger Oak Media
  • TreeHouse
  • Twin Cities Orthopedics
  • Target
  • UBS Financial Services
  • UnitedHealth Group
  • US Bank
  • WOW Factor Sports, Inc.
  • WPC Technologies
  • Xcel Energy
  • Young Life