Internships & Research
An internship is a supplemental educational opportunity to explore career options and develop skills related to the English undergraduate major in a work or work-related setting. Sometimes referred to as coops, fellowships, practicums, or experiential learning, internships are a great way to gain valuable knowledge about the work environment and to acquire on-the-job skills. These positions can be paid or unpaid, depending on the situation, and the amount of time you spend at them can determine how much academic credit you can earn for them.
The Department of English offers a number of internship courses, primarily ENGL 431, 432, 433, and WRIT 431, 432, and 433. (English Education students complete an internship as part of the Secondary Education minor by student teaching.) No matter what your track is, though, an internship can be one of the most valuable experiences of your college career, and we encourage you to consider doing one.
Students can train as tutors and then work assisting others in our Writing Center, or find internship opportunities with local and national businesses, including:
If you want to do an internship, we suggest you begin by talking to your advisor during the second semester of your sophomore year, since most students do their internships as juniors or seniors. Your advisor will probably send you to see Dr. Robert G. Prickett, Acting Chair, who formally approves all internships once the paperwork is completed; you can contact him at 803-323-4570 or find him in 246 Bancroft. The Department has formal documents describing what internships require, how they will be supervised, and how your work will be assessed for a grade; sometimes these detials have to be negotiated with the people offering the internships, so we encourage you to start the process early! Ms. Marilyn Montgomery coordinates many of the Department's internships; you can talk to her in 216 Bancroft if you're interested in these opportunities.
When you are considering joining a specific company after graduation, an internship can make all the difference. The company can see your skills and abilities and can train you to do many of the things other employees do. As an intern, you will also have many opportunities to discuss the potential for getting a full time job with the company. As such, an internship, as any relevant work experience, gives you an edge. Winthrop also offers a limited number of co-op employment opportunities that may also give you a head-start on the employment market. Contact the Center for Career and Civic Engagement in Crawford Building for more information.
The English Department encourages undergraduate students to pursue research opportunities, either independently or through their classes. You may be able to use courses such as ENGL 431, 432, 433, 450, 471, 472 and WRIT 431, 432, 433 to gain academic credit for this research. We encourage you to discuss such opportunities with your advisors and with Dr. Robert Prickett, Acting Chair.
- The Department hosts its own Research Conference every spring. Watch your e-mail and department bulletin boards in the late fall and January for information, or contact Dr. Prickett.
- Some funding may be available for your research through the Hurley Fellowship. Watch your e-mail and department bulletin boards in the late fall and early spring for information about applications.
- You may wish to consider submitting literary criticism papers you've written in your classes for publication in the Oswald Review, the national publication for undergraduate literary research. Ask Dr. Koster for more details. Deadline for submissions is March 31 each year.
- Many students have presented their research at conferences such as NCUR, Sigma Tau Delta, and the Southeastern Honors Forum. Ask your advisor about these conferences or contact Dr. Fike or Dr. Smith, who serve on the Arts & Sciences' Committee on Undergraduate Research. Travel support may be available for these opportunities!
- Students working in the Writing Center have many opportunities to conduct research and present their work. Ask Dr. Smith about upcoming conferences and other publication information.
- Some students have given papers at the Philological Association of the Carolinas meeting. Talk to Dr. Brownson about these options.
- Some students have participated in panels at regional and national conferences of the National Council of Teachers of English. Talk to Dr. Prickett about these options.
- Sigma Tau Delta members may be able to apply for funding and to present or publish their scholarship through the organization. See http://www.english.org for more information, or contact Dr. Sarah Spring.
- Winthrop provides some money for travel and expenses for students presenting their research through the Office of Sponsored Programs and Research. Ms. Justice can help you with your application.
- Some faculty members may seek undergraduates as assistants on grants from the Winthrop University Research Council. Talk to your professors and see if they have projects underway that might have a slot for you!
- The College of Arts and Sciences has a web page devoted to more information on CAS undergraduate research opportunities. We encourage you to visit it and take advantage of its information!