Jonty Richardson, a former Business student, praised RMIT and his course for presenting him with the opportunity to undertake such a comprehensive internship program that left him with a wealth of valuable skills in strategic thinking and creativity. Upon returning to his classes, Jonty was able to apply his knew found knowledge and skillset to his assessments which saw him achieve stronger results.
I was taught the strategic approach for media buying [and] within two weeks I was building ad campaigns for some of Australia's largest brands, which was an opportunity I didn't think I’d ever get while still studying
Undertaking WIL activities also presents students with the opportunity to expand their knowledge by learning new professional skills as well as industry and disciplinary expertise.
Sian Nutting, a former DataSauce intern and alumni Media and Communication student, explained the internship experience put the pieces of her knowledge gained at university together and presented her with professional skills. This resulted in a growth of confidence in herself and her abilities.
"From the beginning [of the internship] we hit the ground running, learning all the ins and outs of digital channels, how to form strategies and communicate with clients," said Sian Nutting.
From these WIL opportunities RMIT created with DataSauce, eight of the students in the internship program have gone on to gain graduate employment with DataSauce and two were able to gain employment straight out of university.
Recently, the Bachelor of Advertising degree has partnered with DataSauce to introduce a WIL partnered project where students work in teams to create and present a comprehensive campaign that includes three stages: a creative brief campaign, a campaign rationale and an evaluation plan for a DataSauce client of their choice.
RMIT’s partnership with DataSauce in creating a multifaceted WIL program is an excellent example of the scope of WIL and involvement with industry a program can utilise as part of their pedagogy.
Student testimonials on the benefits of WIL
WIL activities that give students the opportunity to work on real-world campaigns with clients allows students to put theory into practice. Jonty praised the great foundation of knowledge he had gained in his course, but explained the internship was when his knowledge and skills expanded.
The exposure to industry also enriches students with practical knowledge and understanding of work culture and critical skills in problem solving, teamwork and professional judgement.
Daniel Nolan, Business (Marketing) alumni, can attest to this as he gained valuable career skills around managing clients, budgets, strategies and revenue targets and improved his time management and scheduling skills over his time in the internship program.
Research into WIL has shown undertaking tasks in the workplace gives student work self-efficacy and enhances their knowledge and skills. It also gives students an understanding of the key elements of success and a greater sense of self-confidence which results in reduced anxiety around graduating and stepping into industry.