Internship Guidelines

English and Linguistics Internships–ENGL 499 and LING 499–are part of the campus-wide internship program, offering qualified students the chance to learn and earn college credit through off-campus work experience.

These internships are available for credit toward the major and can also fulfill the Beyond the Classroom general education requirement.

Planning for Your Internship

Our interns have held positions with weekly and daily newspapers, radio and television stations, public relations departments of businesses and institutions (such as hospitals, museums, and city visitor centers), membership departments, law firms, technical writing businesses, libraries, schools, political offices, and more).

For ideas, check the examples of

For additional planning, consider the UMW Intern Adventures blog for more information about how students across the university have found internships and the kind of work they’ve done.

Mary Washington has money for financially supporting unpaid and low-paid internships: check the Center for Career and Professional Development website for more information.

English and Linguistics Internship Process

To arrange an internship for academic credit, you will need to work with both the ENLI Department and the Center for Career and Professional Development:

  • Review the department’s information, including rules, timelines, and examples of English and Linguistics internships for academic credit.
  • Begin by
  • Once you have secured an internship:
  • Finally, submit the Academic Internship Contract to the ENLI Internship Coordinator by the appropriate due date (first week of the semester or end of the spring semester for summer internships). Once the department Internship Coordinator approves the form, the proposal materials will be given to the ENLI Chair to sign and forward directly to the Office of the Registrar.

In order to receive credit, internships must be approved before the internship takes place.


Rules and Guidelines for English and Linguistics Internships

The English and Linguistics Department has established the following rules and guidelines regarding internships sponsored by the department.

Proposal Guidelines: Academic Eligibility

  1. Internships are open only to juniors and seniors.
  2. Only three credits of ENGL 499 and LING 499 can count toward the English major. (In addition to these three, the student may earn up to six elective credits toward the degree.)  NOTE: typically 42 hours at the site are required for each credit awarded.
  3. The content of the internship must be appropriate to sponsorship by the English & Linguistics Department. Typically, the internship draws on the writing, research, analytical, oral, and/or linguistic skills the department emphasizes.
  4. The student must have education and/or experience appropriate to the internship. For example, any student seeking an internship involving linguistics–e.g. with a school speech therapist–must have taken LING 101 (Introduction to Linguistics) and preferably also a 300-level LING course.


Proposal Guidelines: Academic Expectations

  1. The internship must provide the student with a significant learning experience.
  2. The academic component of an internship will typically include: a report by agency supervisor, a student journal or log, and a substantive student report or reflective student report of a specified page length, usually of at least five pages. Students may propose an equivalent alternative, but a portfolio of work produced within the internship is not enough to constitute an acceptable academic component. Students are strongly urged to present their reports at the annual Kemp Symposium.
  3. The internship application should specify the frequency of meetings with the adviser and the length of all writing assignments.
  4. One of the assignments for the internship should be to write 150-200 words on the internship experience that would be suitable for sharing with other students on Mary Washington websites or social media; the student should also submit a photo relevant to the internship. These documents can really help the department promote future internships, but individual interns will be allowed to decide whether their language and photo are actually shared online. This document should be sent both to the faculty sponsor and the internship coordinator.


Proposal Guidelines: Internship Faculty Sponsors

  1. The faculty member sponsoring the internship must have competency in the subject matter of the internship.
  2. The proposal must be approved by the faculty sponsor and the departmental internship coordinator.
  3. A faculty member will sponsor no more than three internships per semester unless a faculty member is under a contract that explicitly includes the expectation of sponsoring more than three internships, has a teaching assignment that is adjusted for the internship overload, or receives additional financial compensation. Adjunct faculty will not sponsor internships unless specifically hired to do so.


Internship Proposal Submission Process and Due Dates

For Fall or Spring semester internships:

  • The deadline is the end of the first week of classes each semester (Friday, 5 pm.).

For Summer internships, arrange the position with your faculty sponsor and the agency supervisor prior to summer. The faculty sponsor for summer internships is normally the department chair, although professors teaching during the summer may be available for internship sponsorship. You must submit your completed contract to the Office of the Registrar for approval after it is signed by the department chair. The deadline for summer internship proposals is the end of the spring semester.

In order to receive credit, internships must be approved before the internship takes place.