Internship guidelines

The best part of studying at RMIT is the industry experienced teachers, challenging real-client projects and the high level of passion and knowledge among the students.

Emma Backlund - Bachelor of Communication (Advertising)

Read below to find out how your opportunity may be suitable as an RMIT WIL placement and submit an internship or work request.

Defining the role

Is the role suitable?

Before registering your interest in taking on a WIL student, ask yourself if your assignment is the right fit for this initiative. Ideally the work has meaningful outcomes for both the student and your organisation.

Paid or unpaid?

RMIT WIL placements can be unpaid, paid at nominal rates, award rates, or above award rates. Consider that a student will pay course fees and may also need to suspend other paid work to carry out the placement. Consider whether a student can be given a stipend or travel and meals allowance to cover some of the costs related to their internship.

Hours of availability

Students have a maximum number of unpaid WIL placement hours that are covered by RMIT insurance policies. These vary between 80 and 200 hours depending on the student’s program requirements and the unpaid hours cannot be extended. The placement hours can be allocated in blocks or spread out on a part-time basis. You and the student can negotiate a work schedule that is mutually agreeable.

Volunteer roles

Consult the Fair Work website or factsheet to determine if your opportunity can be classified as a volunteer role. Volunteer roles are usually through not-for-profit organisations.

You can register volunteer opportunities on our registration form, and we may distribute these to students as volunteer experiences. Usually these are distinct from RMIT WIL placements, though some volunteer roles may be either.

RMIT does not provide agreements or insurance for volunteer roles.  As a condition of distribution by RMIT, volunteer organisation hosts will be required to provide evidence of their public liability insurance to RMIT, as well as personal accident insurance for volunteers (if held).

Selection and supervision

Choosing a suitable student

Once you apply to host an intern the process begins. The Industry Partnerships and WIL team circulates your notice to students, targeting programs that best fit your criteria and dates.

Students then apply directly to you so that you can select the most suitable candidate for the role in your organisation. 

You may choose to interview students or use some other selection process appropriate to your organisation.

Note that students can receive many internship options. Offering a student payment or other development opportunities can help students preference work with your organisation.

A placement ideally leads directly to employment with your organisation, opening up a career path for students and broadening your professional network.

Supervising your student

One or more members of your organisation should act as a supervisor to the student undertaking a WIL activity.  Supervision by someone who is experienced in a relevant field will deliver a rewarding learning experience.

Supervisors should be able to share their expertise on a day-to-day basis. Choose a supervisor who has the time, resources, energy and expertise to ensure the experience is mutually beneficial. 

This supervisor’s role includes:

  • orientation session, advising the student of your organisation’s OH&S requirements and discussing your workplace policies
  • informing other employees about the student, and the reason and purpose of the activity
  • providing constructive, ongoing performance feedback to the student throughout the activity
  • contacting the student’s course co-ordinator if any issues involving the student arise
  • participating in student evaluations and feedback, as required

How RMIT prepares the student

The WIL course coordinator provides students with:

  • the purpose and aims of the WIL activity
  • roles, tasks and expectations for meeting stated learning outcomes
  • workplace rights and responsibilities
  • assessment requirements 

Agreements and insurance

Agreements

Your organisation, the student and RMIT will sign the WIL Agreement. This document ensures that all roles, responsibilities and learning outcomes are agreed upon.

The student will provide you with the Agreement to sign before starting the placement. Start dates, work schedules and location arrangements are recorded in the Agreement.

Please familiarise yourself with the terms in the Agreement, including your requirement to provide a safe work environment.

The student can begin their placement once the Agreement is signed by your organisation then approved and recorded by RMIT.

When students complete the total hours of internship specified by their program, the Agreement will end. You may then negotiate future arrangements directly with the student usually as an employment arrangement.

All arrangements must be in accordance with the Fair Work Ombudsman National Employment Standards. Please visit the  Fair Work website for more information.

Insurance

RMIT has extensive insurance policies to cover students undertaking WIL activities for the duration of the Agreement.  The minimum level of insurance provided by RMIT for all types of Higher Education and Vocational Education WIL activities is student personal accident; public and products liability; and professional indemnity.

Your organisation must hold and maintain appropriate public liability insurance.

If students are being engaged under a paid employment arrangement beyond the internship, your organisation will need to provide workcover and all employment insurances including Employer Liability and Worker’s Compensation insurance.

Internships have become a common and necessary part of many industries, including publishing, where a trainee or apprenticeship model is now less frequent or in some cases non-existent…. An internship is a great opportunity to network and this can be invaluable later in your career.

Tracy O’Shaughnessy - Program Manager, Master of Writing and Publishing

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Acknowledgement of country

RMIT University acknowledges the people of the Woi wurrung and Boon wurrung language groups of the eastern Kulin Nations on whose unceded lands we conduct the business of the University. RMIT University respectfully acknowledges their Ancestors and Elders, past and present. RMIT also acknowledges the Traditional Custodians and their Ancestors of the lands and waters across Australia where we conduct our business.

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