» internships and independent study
Experience. Applying what you learn in the classroom to real life situations. Understanding the daily demands of work. Taking risks. Making your voice stronger. Gaining confidence and perspectives. These are things you don't learn from a textbook. That's why internships and independent learning play a strong role in the Simmons curriculum.
"The only way I can make an informed decision about my career is to experience it hands-on. That's exactly what I have been able to do at WBZ."—Marcia Emerson, radio production intern at WBZ News Radio
A hallmark of the Simmons experience is the independent learning requirement. One of the most popular ways Simmons students gain professional experience is through internships. Simmons helped pioneer the practice of integrating internships more generally into college curricula, thus exposing students to real world challenges by placing them in a professional setting.
"My internship is a goldmine. I take my designs from the first informational meeting with the client to the last press check. Not only do I gain portfolio pieces I am experiencing a real professional atmosphere." — Asya Sibova, design intern at Corey McPherson Nash
With guidance from faculty, many Simmons students spend at least one semester working at one of Boston's world-renowned hospitals, museums, law firms, financial services firms or any one of the hundreds of workplaces that have come to count on Simmons interns. Many of these internships lead to job offers. Others help students understand that perhaps the career of their dreams isn't so dreamy. All provide invaluable experience.
"I majored in political science and African American studies, and one of my professors suggested I find an internship that would combine both interests. So I did, and it turned out to be a wonderful experience. I had the opportunity to see the political process in action, not just read about it. I sat in on committee hearings, watched bills being debated, and met a lot of influential people, like Coretta Scott King."—Regina Hill, class of 1998, was an intern for the Massachusetts Black Legislative Caucus.
Fieldwork and Research
Students also get a taste of real world experience through fieldwork and other forms of independent study. Fieldwork opportunities are abundant, and emphasize research or other applied learning experiences in a variety of fields and disciplines. They allow practical application of academic knowledge and skills. Students often present their research findings at conferences and co-publish their work with their faculty mentors. Under faculty supervision, many students develop independent study projects on subjects of their choosing. These projects require motivation, self-discipline, and innovative thinking, all valuable skills to take into the workplace.
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