CU Students Jump-Start Careers Through Internships

by Devin Robinson- Cedarville, OH

For many college students, the summer is a time to relax and visit with friends and family back home, but two Cedarville University juniors used the break to get a jump-start on their future careers.

Caitlyn York and Whitney Miller—members of Alpha Kappa Delta, Cedarville’s chapter of Sigma Tau Delta, the International English Honor Society—decided to take part in summer internships related to their English majors.

Miller traveled to Bristol—a border town with the state lines of Tennessee and Virginia traveling right down the center of Main Street—to work as a general assignment reporter for the Bristol Herald Courier, a 41,000 circulation daily newspaper.

“I interned from mid-May to mid-August, about twelve weeks total,” Miller says. “It was a paid internship, and I worked full time, sometimes more than 50 hours a week.”

Miller wrote over 35 articles during the twelve weeks of her internship, and many of her pieces appeared on the front page. “I did articles on local events, arts, festivals, crime, fires, education, charity, personal interest and features, as well as local medical issues and breakthroughs.”

Several of her stories were published in other local media outlets such as the Richmond Times Dispatch. With a daily circulation of more than 186,000, the Times Dispatch is widely considered the newspaper of record for the Commonwealth of Virginia.

At the end of her internship, her supervisor recognized Miller’s hard work. “The managing editor of the Bristol Herald Courier offered me the opportunity to work as a staff reporter for the paper after I graduate.”

Caitlyn York headed in the opposite direction from her classmate, and took an internship with David C. Cook, a Christian publishing company in Colorado Springs, Colorado. While this was a new experience for York, it was a first for David C. Cook as well.

“The company’s internship program is very new,” York said. “I was the first intern they ever had.”

The main focus of David C. Cook is the publishing of curriculum, but York was given a position on the editorial staff in the book department.

“I worked under Melanie Larson, the teen and young adult editor,” York said. “I had the opportunity to work on critiquing their current line of teen and young adult books.”

York spent much of her time at David C. Cook reading manuscripts and offering suggestions on book proposals she thought had potential. She also worked with her team to critique and present promising book proposals at editorial staff meetings. York assisted the copy editor with proofreading responsibilities, including working on the sequel to Jim Stovall’s The Ultimate Gift.

While David C. Cook benefited from York’s hard work, she in turn gained valuable mentoring from Larson and the editing team.

“Melanie had me read books about the editorial process and the book publishing business,” York said. “She wanted me to become more informed about the direction of the industry.”

York, like her classmate Miller, was offered a job with David C. Cook upon graduation.

Discipline-related experiences like what York and Miller had are what employers are looking for when considering applicants. With more than 1.3 million people earning a bachelor’s degree each year, employers are increasingly saying that experience counts. It has become more and more obvious that leaving college with just a degree and a GPA can put you behind in the job hunt.

Caitlyn York and Whitney Miller are just two examples of Cedarville University’s commitment to helping students get ahead.