The Best Internships for an English Major

By Victoria Goldberg , last updated December 23, 2011

For those wise English majors who boast of common sense, in addition to passionate love for Romantic poets or Elizabethan plays, an internship can offset the ignominy of those scarlet letters, BA and provide both the network and the skills for finding a career after commencement. Regardless of major, the right internship can be the perfect segway into a career in just about any field. Please note, an unpaid internship is not making any “top” list in these troubled economic times (unless it's the list of top unpaid internships for class-action settlement money). Interesting, paid internships are out there, for all disciplines, especially liberal arts. One of those competitive students or recent grads with the drive, grades, and charm to get them? Read on for the top internships for English majors.

The Wiley Program
John Wiley & Sons, Inc., the global publisher of such well-known titles as Betty Crocker, Frommer's, and Better Homes & Gardens offers music to the English major's ears, the mythological, paid, publishing internship. The Wiley Program is a ten-week long summer internship program for students. Most students within the Wiley internship program are between their junior and senior years of college. Interns are placed within a variety of areas within the company such as Marketing, Editorial, Production, Information Technology, New Media, Customer Service and Publicity. Most internship positions are located at the Wiley Global corporate office in Hoboken, New Jersey, but there are also opportunities in Somerset, San Francisco, Indianapolis, and near Boston. The program combines real job experience with seminars taught by department heads and learning luncheons. The weekly stipend, multiple locations, and the occasional free lunch make this program an obviously excellent choice for English majors.
Doctors Without Borders
This renowned nonprofit organization, which was founded in 1971, brings care and medical supplies to the places that need it most. Doctors Without Borders raises awareness and brings medical care to the third world. English majors, rejoice! You don't need Bio to save the world. This highly competitive paid internship program which is based out of New York City places interns in a variety of positions. Students or grads can look forward to practical work experience in Communications, Development, or Human Resources, both in the field and the office. Interns enjoy a basic introduction to the field of international medical humanitarian aid and advocacy. Because this is a highly competitive program, all applicants should be excellent students and present themselves as such. Perusal of the various job requirements shows that the finely tuned writing skills of the average English major will provide an edge for any noble internship seeker looking for a great internship and to support an amazing cause.
U.S. Department of State
Interested in policy? Language? World Culture? Can keep a secret? Consider the State Department Internship Program. Offering both paid and unpaid student internships, the state department offers a wide variety of opportunities for an array of majors. Candidates must have be currently enrolled or have been accepted for enrollment, have US Citizenship, good academic standing, and must be able to successfully complete a background investigation to receive either a secret or top secret clearance. Beat poets beware; you may be subject to random drug testing.
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