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Internships

 

RLL encourages students to utilize all the resources available to them on the UM campus to prepare for their future careers. For all current international and domestic internship opportunities available to UM students, please visit the LSA Opportunity Hub, Career Center and the International Center.

To earn major/minor course credit for your internship, please contact the instructor listed by language below. 

 

French Internships

French 281 & French 381: Internship in France or Other Francophone Countries

French 281 and 381 are 3 credit courses for academic work completed during an internship that involves the extensive use of French.  Students volunteering and doing project work in French speaking locations, who have applied through the LSA Opportunity Hub, accepted a position through an internship placement company or who have sourced their own French-speaking internship may be eligible to earn UM credit for FR281 or FR381 and to join the cohort of other U-M RLL students going abroad – contact instructor for advising and to determine eligibility: Bethany Kreps.

Students will enroll in FR281 or FR381 in the Fall semester.  Course requirements consist of written assignments, photo submissions, 2-3 meetings,  and two presentations. Aside from these requirements, the class does not meet.

Intended audience:

The course is available to all French and International Studies majors or minors who meet the required pre-requisites.

Course syllabi:

Syllabi will be available at the required pre-departure meeting held by the instructor of record.

Timeline:

At the end of the preceding winter term, students must contact the instructor to determine eligibility and be issued an override to register for the class in the fall term. Students  will be required to attend a pre-departure meeting in April. Internships will take place during the spring and summer terms: May-August only.

For more information:

Visit the LSA Opportunity Hub website to learn more about French internships: spring and summer paid and unpaid positions available in France and other French-speaking countries.  Scholarships and funding are available.  To earn UM credit towards your degree, students should contact the Francophone Internships instructor Bethany Kreps.

 

Italian Internships

Course: Italian 346

Credits: 3
Consent: Students should contact a faculty member to sponsor their internship.
Enforced Prerequisites:  Advisory prereqs (suggested): Completion of ITALIAN 300, 340, 345 or 361; and offer of a summer internship in an Italian-speaking country.
Repeatability: Cannot be repeated.  However, students can also earn 3 credits from an independent study.      

Spanish Internships

Courses: Spanish 299, Spanish 428

Credits: 3 

Consent: With permission of instructor, María Dorantes, lourdes@umich.edu. Please make an appointment.

Enforced Prerequisites: 
For students who want to receive credit for the internship at the 200-level (Spanish 299), the enforced requisite is: SPANISH 277; or SPANISH 278 (or 290) or AMCULT 224 or LATINOAM 224; or RCLANG 324.

For students who want to receive credit for the internship at the 400-level (Spanish 428), the enforced requisite is: Nine credits chosen between SPANISH 279 and 399; or two RCLANG 324 and six credits chosen between SPANISH 279 and 399.

Repeatability: Cannot be repeated. However, students can also earn 3 credits from an independent study.

There are two internship modalities offered by the RLL department:
1. Domestic
2. Abroad

1. Domestic Internship
This is a three credit course for independently arranged domestic internships that involve the extensive use of Spanish in the United States.

Students are enrolled for either Spanish 299 or Spanish 428 depending on the rigor/content of the internship as well as the course level needed for the Spanish major or minor.

Contact lourdes@umich.edu for information.

2. Internship Abroad
This is a three-credit course for an internship that involves the extensive use of Spanish in a country in which Spanish is the primary language. Depending on the assigned internship, the requirements will vary.  Usually 5-7 weeks, 25-40 hours per week, are required.   

Depending on the course level needed to complete major or minor requirements, students may be enrolled in either SPANISH 299 or 428.  Course requirements consist of oral and written assignments, meetings, and presentations. Aside from these requirements, the class does not meet. Please review a detailed description below:

Internship Abroad Course DescriptionI

Intended audience:
The course is available to all returning Spanish majors or minors who meet the required pre-requisites.

Course syllabi:
Syllabi will be available at the required pre-departure meeting held by the instructor of record.

Timeline:
Application times during the Winter term vary, depending on the provider. At the end of the Winter term, students will be required to attend a pre-departure meeting. Internships will take place during the Spring and Summer terms only, but students will be registered for the class for the following Fall term. The deadline to apply for the internship course is April 12.  

Pre-departure meeting:
There will be a required pre-departure meeting providing the information on all course requirements. This is usually conducted during the study period of the winter term, that is, after classes end and before the start of the exam period.

Weekly online assignment:
Once abroad, students will be required to do an online weekly assignment in Spanish.  This assignment will allow the instructor to make sure that students are doing well with the internship. More details will be provided at the pre-departure meeting.  

Research and reflective papers:

Research paper: 
Students are required to write a 10 page paper for SPANISH 299, and a 20 page paper for SPANISH 428.

Reflective paper: Students are required to write a 2 page paper reflecting on their experiences as an intern. In both cases, the paper should be written in Spanish and due the week before Fall term begins.

Meetings with instructor:
Within the first three weeks of the Fall term, students are required to meet with María Dorantes to describe (in Spanish) the internship experience, and to discuss the remaining requirements of the course.

Read about students' 2018 internship experiences!

Griffin St. Onge

Majors in French & Political Science, Minor in Translation Studies, Class of 2019

I interned for a member of the Canadian Parliament through the Ottawa Internship Program. My MP represents a district of Montreal, so I got to use my French skills through talking to Francophone staffers, going to meetings of the Quebec Liberal caucus, canvassing voters in the district, making political calls for the Liberal Party, and translating the office's publications from French to English.

I wanted to intern in Canada because I saw it as the perfect way to use my degree; I have a double major in French and Political Science and a minor in Translation Studies. I completed meaningful political work, learned so much about another country's political system, used my French skills in a professional setting, and learned about how translation is used to govern multilingual societies. It was a completely unique experience, and I still can't believe the level of access I had to the workings of the Canadian government, especially as an American.

My internship allowed me to make meaningful connections with my MP, and everyone in my office. We spent a lot of time talking about the differences between our countries, and how relations between the United States and Canada are changing. It was fascinating to see how another country handles its political issues. Right after my internship in Canada, I interned for my Congressman on Capitol Hill. My internship in Canada gave me such an interesting perspective on how American policymakers look at issues, and they were also very interested in my experiences in Canada!

The internship was such a great way to use French, and I got to improve my French in ways I can't in a classroom. Being able to incorporate French into this internship allowed me to learn so much about Quebec's culture, and Francophone societies outside of France more largely. Overall, it was an incredible culmination of my college education that I'll never forget. It has helped me commit to incorporating French into my career, as well as given me a much more well-rounded point of view on political issues.

Christopher Streng

Major in Business Administration, Minor in Spanish, Class of 2021

Over the summer, I had the incredible opportunity to go abroad to Vigo, Spain from May through July working as a Finance intern at a large automotive supplier, merging both of my career interests. While there, I completed all business activities entirely in Spanish. I found this internship independently through a family friend in Vigo, but thanks to the Spanish internship course, Spanish 428, I was able to receive credit towards my Spanish minor from this experience.

In addition to greatly improving my Spanish speaking, reading, and writing skills, I learned a lot while on the job about business, especially about how international it really is and gained great experience. Outside of work, I met many kids around my age through the family I know in Vigo, and we spent a lot of time together watching soccer games, going to the beach, out partying, going to concerts, or just hanging out around the city. I still stay connected with all my friends there and am planning to visit again this summer. On a personal level, living alone overseas really gave me a chance to be independent and responsible for myself, which gave me a lot of confidence looking forward to once I graduate.

This experience has also greatly influenced my career aspirations, as I now hope to either work for an international company focusing operations in Spanish-speaking countries or by working in Spain or Latin America in order to best leverage my business and Spanish knowledge. I truly love the difference in culture and lifestyle that I experienced in Vigo this summer and hope to return for either work or to live there.

My best advice for other students interning or studying abroad is to take a chance. I know that it can be scary going to another country alone or trying new things, but it truly is a unique opportunity to be able to immerse yourself in a foreign country and culture that provides unparalleled opportunities to improve your language skills, cultural understanding, and perspective. Make sure not to simply find other Americans or people to speak with in English, but to try your best to make connections with natives and speak as much as possible in their language, Spanish in my case, for that is the only way to truly improve and to get the best true understanding of the culture and people.

Ryan Myers

Major in Business Administration, Minors in French and Political Science, Class of 2020

This past summer I had the incredible opportunity to do an internship abroad in Ottawa, working for a French speaking member of Parliament from Quebec. As an intern, I was able to practice my French, learn more about politics and government in other countries, research international issues and explore Canada’s capital. In the office, I worked 5 days a week, around eight hours a day for about a month and a half. In the office I helped organize the Member of Parliaments schedule, wrote to constituents, researched different policies, helped his staff with speeches and writing opinion pieces.

At first, I was nervous about being able to successfully do everything in French, but everyone was very nice and was okay if I made small mistakes in French. They helped me learn more about the language and taught me some of the differences between French in Europe and French in Canada. I was able to improve my written and spoken French, while learning more about government.

The program, organized through the University of Michigan Dearborn, also had many other exciting experiences planned while we were in Canada. There was a weekend trip to Montreal, many visits to museums, and government buildings. I was also able to interview the Ambassador from Belgium, for an assignment associated with the program. There were many other embassies that we visited and different events that we attended for Members of Parliament.

I was able to research many interesting and current topics, that impacted the United States and Canada. I was working the day that the United States announced the tariffs on Canadian steel and aluminum. I had to research the impact these would have on my MP’s riding and the economy. I then was able to attend a meeting in the Office of the Leader of the Opposition and went to a press conference where the MP I worked with made remarks. After that, the group from U of M went to the United States Embassy and learned about the tariffs and what was going on from the American government perspective. This, and many other research topics helped me see the many different sides of an issue, and the impact that they have on a wide range of people.

Overall, this experience inspired me to learn more about the law and public service. After my internship, I felt validated in my goal of going to law school, and I sought out an internship in Washington D.C. for the coming summer, so that I can learn more about public service, government, and the law.