If you want to hit-the-ground-running in the public relations and communication industry, PRIA strongly encourages students to get some work experience under their belts. The best way to do this is through an internship. Not only will an internship enable you to develop practical skills, you'll also start to develop your networks and contacts within the industry.
With an internship you'll:
PRIA lists internship opportunities free of charge. That means PRIA always have a fantastic pool of potential opportunities for you to explore. PRIA's Internship Exchange is updated often so please check back frequently for new listings.
PRIA regularly receives queries relating to the use of public relations and communication interns. The following is clarification in relation to requirements for vocational placements and work experience for students under the Fair Work Act 2009.
Through the Act, the Government has implemented measures to protect young workers from exploitation and to ensure fair, relevant and enforceable minimum conditions for employees to adhere to.
The Fair Work Ombudsman recently clarified the interpretation of the Act and the following principles should be considered when offering or accepting unpaid public relations and communication interns.
3. Unpaid work experience will be a "requirement of an education or training course" where it is necessary for the completion of the student's qualification or enables them to receive credit towards the completion of their qualification
4. The legality of unpaid "work observation" should be considered on a case by case basis depending on what it is actually likely to entail.
It is not lawful for an employer to accept work and not pay remuneration in other circumstances.
It is possible for parties to enter into less formal work experience arrangements other than vocational placements but only if no employment relationship (formal or informal) is entered into. Parties who are considering this should seek legal advice first.
The Careers Industry Council of Australia and the Federal Government are discussing the impact of the Act on Work Integrated Learning. Further information about vocational placements can be located on the Fair Work Act website www.fairwork.gov.au.
Last Updated: May 2, 2013