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Portfolio Introduction

Communication Internship

Well-prepared portfolios document the scope and quality of students’ training, workplace experiences, knowledge and skills. Portfolios show academic and professional growth, and provide tangible evidence of the information in the résumé. They reveal students’ understanding beyond factual knowledge.

Portfolios encourage self-reflection. They can demonstrate your ability to assess successes and failures, and to identify goals for further development academically and professionally. 

In other words, portfolios show others how prepared you are for life after college through your goals, class work, internships and service. Portfolios allow others to gain a deeper and clearer understanding of where you have been, where you are now, and where you are going in your chosen profession.

Portfolios provide:
  • a connection between your learning and work,
  • proof of competency and achievements in your field,
  • an assessment of your academic and professional progress
  • a vehicle for planning further development and improvement.

Portfolios are designed for different uses, and content depends on that purpose.
  • A college portfolio includes materials focused on your education, including course work, observation, reflection and plans.
  • An internship portfolio documents your learning and performance during an internship, paid or unpaid.
  • An employment portfolio showcases material that proves your qualifications and suitability for a position.
  • A professional portfolio documents the accumulation of knowledge, skills, competency and achievements over the course of career.

Portfolios are used during job interviews as a way to demonstrate to a prospective employer that you are a good candidate for the position. They are used for admission into graduate school. They offer you a way to keep track of academic and professional experiences and development. Portfolios evolve as you continue growing in your field.

Be sure to archive and edit materials as appropriate, and prune and redesign your portfolio as necessary. Continually proofread so that you are ready for viewers because any typo is reason to eliminate your candidacy for a position or program.

Electronic & Hard Copy Portfolios
Develop and maintain a comprehensive portfolio on your personal computer. Prepare a limited, public version on a web page to supplement applications for internships, jobs, service or graduate school.

Also maintain a hard copy portfolio as a backup in case of computer malfunctions and disappearing internet sites. Be aware that some employers prefer hard copy submissions. Keep originals of your work in a safe place and use copies with applications.

When job hunting, never leave your portfolio with prospective employers because you might never see it again. Instead, before the interview copy the relevant pages to leave with employers. Include a cover page, résumé, references and a few examples of your work. These mini-versions of the employment portfolio can be packaged in a paper or plastic page binder available for a few dollars at office supply and copy shops. Or you can simply staple the pages together.

CMM 498 Communication Internship Portfolio
The portfolio developed for Communication Internship, CMM 498, can become the basis of a comprehensive portfolio or can be modified to present at internship and job interviews. After successfully completing the course, eliminate course-specific documents, including the Internship Learning Agreement and Progress Reports. Then, feature your internship work as a chapter and later add documentation of other internships and jobs.