The Washington metropolitan area is rich with opportunities to pursue internships related to literature and the arts. Through internships, students can convert knowledge into practical application as they participate in and contribute to their field or a closely related area of interest. Internships also offer valuable opportunities for students to meet and interact with others in their field, establishing connections that may even lead to full-time employment after completion of the degree.
Student interns have prepared program summaries for public television, written newsletters for businesses and non-profit organizations, written for local newspapers and journals, taught creative writing in local schools, and edited government publications. Organizations with which students have had internships include the White House Press Corps, the Canadian Embassy, the Whitman-Walker Clinic, the Audubon Nature Society, Georgetown University Press, the Writer's Center in Bethesda, the Public Theater in New York City, the Democratic National Committee, Teacher Magazine, Caribbean Travel Magazine, National Geographic Traveler on-line, the Discovery Channel, WETA television station, the Folger Shakespeare Library, and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, as well as American University's own Writing Center.
Students interested in pursuing internships can explore possible placements with the Department Chair or the Director of the MA Program early in the term preceding the semester in which the internship is to take place. The search for an appropriate placement will then be conducted by the student under the guidance of the Chair or the Director of the MA Program. The student also selects a faculty mentor who will supervise the academic component of the internship. Typically, a student works at the internship organization for ten hours a week for two hours of graduate credit. The third hour of credit is fulfilled through the academic component, which may include a variety of writing assignments such as a journal and papers. The final grade is determined by the evaluations of the internship supervisor and the faculty supervisor.
Internships are available during the summer as well as during the fall and spring semesters. Some international internships are available during summer months.