Undergraduate Program


The Department of English’s internship program allows English majors to gain skill and academic credit, and meet people who can aid their careers. The program matches students with locally and nationally known commercial and nonprofit companies in, among other fields, literature, publishing, radio, television, and public relations.

The Program

The Department of English’s internship program helps majors create a fall or spring semester internship with one of nearly three dozen participating Upstate New York companies. It also allows students to create a summer independent study program anywhere in the world.

Internships let majors refine their field of interest, linking academic study and post-University careers for example:

Interns works 10-15 hours at the participating company, meeting key officials, earning four credit hours, and building skills and professional relationships. Interns are paired with a faculty advisor.

At the end of the semester, students submit a portfolio of their work and a 12-15 page essay describing the internship experience. We also invite students who plan to be on campus the semester following their internship to participate in an informal discussion with undergraduates who are interested in learning more about our internship program.

The summer independent study process is similar but allows majors to create an internship near where they live and work. Recent summer programs include NBC and ESPN Television; TV’s Dr. Phil, Tavis Smiley, and Tyra Banks shows; and major radio stations in New York, Chicago, and Boston.

Approval Process and Deadlines

Students interested in an internship in English should contact our undergraduate internship advisor Jim Memmott. Students in the Language, Media, and Communication track who need an internship to complete their requirements should contact the director of undergraduate studies. 

Students who are interested in internships within the Rare Books Department or any other department of the University library should also contact the director of undergraduate studies.

All internships must be approved by the department’s undergraduate internship advisor

Students planning a spring semester internship contact the undergraduate internship advisor no later than October 15, and that students planning a fall semester internship make contact no later than March 15.

The application process is straightforward, but please be sure to allow yourself enough time to select and interview for an internship, receive department approval, and fill out the necessary paperwork. It is never too early to contact us so that we can help you to sort through your internship and scheduling options.

Students asking for credit retroactively, after they have already begun their internships, risk not getting course credit for their internships.

Tanenbaum Scholarship

In 2004 University alumnus John Tanenbaum ’85 began a funded internship to help English majors subsidize their housing, transportation, and other expenses in a summer independent study. Since 2006 the Tanenbaum Scholarship has helped make internships possible at an academic publishing house in Pittsburgh, a TV production team in Los Angeles, the American Red Cross, and the Legal Aid Society of Rochester. For more information, contact thomas.hahn@rochester.edu.

Applications for summer 2017 will be posted in the spring 2017 semester.

Theater Internship: Public Relations & Marketing (ENG 398)

A number of internships are available through the UR International Theatre Program. One of the most popular is our semester-long PR internship. PR interns help create all publicity materials for events in Todd Theatre or sponsored by the International Theatre Program, including drafting press releases, planning marketing campaigns, etc. They distribute publicity materials both on and off campus. Finally, PR interns staff the box office during productions, interacting with the public and the theatre personnel.

Research Internship Opportunities 

A number of undergraduate students have refined their research and writing skills by interning with English faculty, the Robbins Library, and the River Campus Libraries’ Department of Rare Books, Special Collections and Preservation. During these internships, students have collaborated with our faculty on their professional projects, including:

In some cases faculty have supervised students’ original work in the University’s archives, on pieces like the Susan B. Anthony papers, the John Gardner papers, the Claude Bragdon archive, dime novels, and the Plutzik Library’s Heyen Collection of broadsides and first editions of contemporary poetry.

The students’ work is featured on the Rare Books, Special Collections and Preservation site and the Camelot Project site. Students arrange these internships directly with the faculty who will be supervising their internship.

Participating Organizations

Afterimage Al Sigl Center
American Red Cross Arts & Cultural Council for Greater Rochester
Bausch and Lomb BOA Editions
Cerebral Palsy Association Democrat and Chronicle
Eastman Kodak Company FOX TV Rochester
George Eastman House GEVA Theatre
Image Word Sound Merrill Lynch Client Association
Messenger-Post Newspapers Monroe County Democratic Committee
National Multiple Sclerosis Society Planned Parenthood
University Communications, University of Rochester Office of Minority Student Affairs, University of Rochester
Open Letter Books, University of Rochester Rochester Broadway Theater League
Rochester Museum and Science Center Rochester Red Wings
University of Rochester Press Visiting Nurse Service
Writers and Books WROC TV
WXXI Radio WYSL Radio