Advertising Internships

An internship is one of the most important experiences you will have. It should give you an opportunity to prove to yourself, to an employer and to faculty members that the education you received has prepared you to handle the responsibilities of a job in your chosen field successfully.

Everything you need to know about qualifying for MDJ advertising internships and what is expected of you once you secure an internship can be found here. To learn more, explore the links, and then make an appointment with Associate Professor Evan Bailey, the advertising internship coordinator ( to get answers to questions you may have.  Remember, you cannot register for internships online. The MDJ office will register you for the course, once you secure an approved internship and submit an online application.



  • MDJ 31002 Advertising Copywriting

  • MDJ 31003 Advertising Media Planning


Every student majoring in the School of Media and Journalism must complete an internship (MDJ 40002) as a requirement for his/her degree.  At MDJ one internship credit hour equals 150 hours of completed, approved internship work.

Advertising students in catalog year 2013 and earlier are required to earn one internship credit hour. Advertising students in catalog year 2014 and beyond are required to complete two credit hours of internship. This requirement, unique to Advertising, can be met by taking one 300-hour internship for two credit hours or two 150-hour internships for one credit hour each.

To ensure you will receive credit for your internship, fill out an Internship Application Form, as soon as your internship is confirmed. After your internship is approved, the MDJ office will email instructions to you to enroll in MDJ 40092. You must be enrolled to receive credit.

You will be notified promptly if your internship application is not approved. If you have already accepted your internship, you will need to decide if you want to work the internship for no credit or resign the internship.

You will receive your internship syllabus for the applicable semester via email. The syllabus outlines reporting requirements you will be required to submit periodically. Work samples and additional assignments may be required.

Advertising Internship Application Form

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why do I need an internship?

It is an opportunity to apply the knowledge you’ve gained in your classes in a professional setting. You also can gain valuable knowledge about working in the profession, gain professional work experience for your resumé and begin networking and developing references for future job searches.

2. What are the prerequisites for the internship?

You must successfully complete the prerequisite courses detailed above before you can do your internship for credit. Many students prefer to complete all coursework required for their major before completing an internship, so they feel more fully prepared for the professional demands of the internship.

3. When should I do my internship?

You can do your internship anytime after you’ve completed the above prerequisites. The earliest time is usually the summer after your junior year. You can do the internship during the summer, fall or spring semesters.  You may want to consider doing your internship after you’ve completed all your classes.  Some organizations use internships as three-month interview processes, and, if the organization offers you a full-time job at the end of your internship, you can start immediately instead of having to finish the classes for your degree.  Your graduation is delayed until your internship has been completed.

4. How long does an internship have to be?

The internship is a one-credit-hour course, and it is a requirement of the advertising degree. Students in catalog years 2013 and earlier are required to complete one, 150-hour internship.  For students in catalog year 2014 and beyond, the requirement is one, 300-hour internship or two 150-hour internships.

5. How do I find one?

Internships help prepare you for entering the advertising industry, and we consider internships an opportunity to develop the skills needed on your job search. While you are responsible for finding your own internship, we do provide support to help ensure a successful experience. Your professors and instructors members are available to help you find and prepare for your internship. Internships can be found and applied for through Handshake.

If you want to do an internship in another city, acquire a directory from that city’s American Advertising Federation advertising club website.  You can do a search online, contact the city’s Better Business Bureau, or access the American Advertising Federation website at Go to Club Services and the Local AAF Clubs and Federations. You can identify geographic areas you’re interested in exploring.

6. OK, I’ve found a business/organization at which I’d like to do an internship. Now what?

Call the business/organization and ask if it takes interns. If so then ask how to apply and follow those instructions. If you reach and speak with a receptionist, ask who handles internships. Make sure you get that person’s name, title, email address and phone number, and then ask to be connected to him/her. If you get his/her voicemail, leave a message and follow up with an appropriate email confirming your voicemail.  Be polite, but repeat the call and email until you reach the intern manager.

Once you reach him/her, be ready to explain exactly what you want and ask what to do. Make sure you keep accurate records of your conversation and what future action is needed. Do you need to re-contact a place at a certain time? Do you need to send a resumé cover letter or application by a specific time? Make certain you have written down that person’s name, title, email address and phone number.

Your goal is to get an interview. So keep working toward that. If you call and leave a message, don’t ask for a return call.  Tell him/her you’ll call back. It’s OK to leave your phone number or email address, but make it clear you’ll be calling back. Be persistent without being obnoxious. Call back every other day or even every day. Be polite and courteous.

Businesses and organizations want interns who are determined and persistent. By being determined and persistent and polite, you are likely exhibiting qualities they value. Some employers may delay returning your initial inquiries just to learn if you are persistent and determined.

7. Once I get the interview scheduled, how do I prepare for it?

You should have a resumé and cover letter prepared.  Send them to a potential employer, and make sure you take copies to an interview. If you are interested in an internship in creative, you need to have a portfolio of your creative work. This can be the ads you created in the Copywriting class, as well as ads you created outside the class, through Franklin Advertising or as part of a competition, on our own or at IdeaBase. If you are looking for an internship in media planning, you’ll want to take the media plan from your media-planning class. If you’re interested in account planning or account management, you still should take the samples of your work.

Show your interest in the organization. Do your research.  Be smart about the company profile, what it is known for, who are the principal clients and typically how interns are utilized. Consult with classmates who may have interned there before.

Prepare a list of questions to ask the interviewer. Many times, an interviewer will ask you if you have any questions, so make sure you do. But careful with “needy questions.” But do ask about primary intern duties, employer expectations, challenges and opportunities.

Dress professionally. Remember, it’s always better to be over-dressed than under-dressed. Arrive at least 15 minutes early. Check out the location of the internship before you interview, so you know how long it takes to get there and where to park.  There is nothing more stressful and damaging than arriving late for an interview.

8. What about during the interview?

Try very hard to think on your feet, so you can answer the interviewer’s questions quickly. But think about your answers. If you really don’t know something, say so. But remember, the interviewer is trying to find out what you do know. Stay relaxed and conversational. If you think of a question, ask it.  If you don’t understand something, say you aren’t sure what the interviewer means.

It is possible that more than one person will interview you.  Be prepared for this.  You may be asked a question and then a follow-up question. Be prepared to elaborate on your original answer. Think about possible questions before the interview, and think about your answers to those questions. For example if you’re asked why you want to get into the advertising business, you should be able to answer immediately.

You will want to ask about working hours, to learn if the internship will meet your credit requirements. But be careful with needy questions, such as pay, parking, office, working hours, and the like.  Ask these questions once you have been offered the internship. Asking them before you are offered the internship can leave the wrong impression.

9. What about after the interview?

Try to get the interviewer to give you some idea of the next step. If the interviewer doesn’t suggest a next step or doesn’t indicate whether you got the internship, ask her/him if you did or didn’t.  If there are further steps, make sure you understand clearly what they are. If a decision is to be made at a later date, ask if you can call at that time to learn if you got the internship.  Whatever the interviewer tells you, make sure you note it and put the date in your calendar.

Whether you are offered the internship or not, you should follow up immediately with a written and mailed thank-you note and email. DO BOTH. Email is too easy and casual and does not express your appreciation as fully as a written thank you.

10. Once I have the internship secured, how do register for it?

Promptly write a thank note and mail it to your interviewer.  Make sure you have confirmed your start and completion dates, hours, dress code and general expectation of duties.

Complete the online internship application form. You will be registered for the internship credit by the MDJ office after your application is approved. You will receive approval via email, along with an internship syllabus that outlines your reporting requirements. You cannot register for an internship yourself.

You will be notified promptly if your internship application is not approved. If you have already accepted your internship, you will need to decide if you want to work the internship for no credit or resign the internship.