Journalism internship courses beat COVID lockdown

Internship experiences for RMIT journalism students have been dramatically extended with more than 20 industry partners providing rich and targeted remote placement opportunities this year.

Graduate Diploma in Journalism and Bachelor of Communication (Journalism) students have secured remote placements negotiated with industry partners including The Age, News Corp, the ABC, Canberra Times, RMIT ABC Fact Check, Beat Magazine, CBD News, Mornington Peninsula News, Lawson Media, Spectrum Media, Monde, Star News Group, Surf Coast Times, 3RPP FM, the Australian Greens, Mornington Peninsula Tourism Board, and Radio RSN.

Graduate Diploma in Journalism program manager, Maree Curtis said it was exceptional to be able to bolster the successful internship program with dozens of new and desirable remote placement opportunities.

“Remote placements ensure the course can run regardless of COVID-19 and they actually boost our overall capacity to give students the best possible opportunities to build their experience, CVs and networks,” Curtis said.

“Students have the chance to experience different aspects of the industry through placements with newspapers, broadcast, podcasting, digital, corporate and not for profit sectors.”

Students have secured a range of internship experiences from News Corp data journalism placements, to research and production roles with the ABC, to dedicated placements in fashion, sport, music and politics.   

RMIT Learning and Teaching Work Integrated Learning Academic, Dr Simon Thornton applauded the rapid shift to develop remote opportunities for journalism students.

“The effort, workload and resulting uplift in experience for students cannot be overestimated here. Re-working and negotiating the internships so they can operate fully online is one body of work, but to also increase the business partner network and enrich the applied learning opportunity for these journalism students during this time is a fantastic result,” Thornton said.

Journalism Internship and Professional Placement lecturer Sonja Heydeman said RMIT’s industry connections and work integrated learning courses have always supported graduate employability, but this year presented an extraordinary challenge.

“COVID-19 has changed the way we’ve looked at managing and ensuring placement, but it’s also allowed for bold vision to build on successful industry partnerships and create valuable new associations. And all in rapid time,” Heydeman said. 

“All students requiring placements are being supported in this approach.”  

The Graduate Diploma in Journalism and Bachelor of Communication (Journalism) programs have opened for a mid-year student intake. 

“The mid-year intake is unprecedented and takes into account increasing demand for the Graduate Diploma in Journalism,” Curtis said.

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