New York Summer Internships Demonstrate Leadership Potential of Future Ole Miss Grads

The New York Internship experience not only offers summer work opportunites for Ole Miss students but also allows time for outings. Enjoying dinner at an ethnic restaurant in the Big Apple are (from left) LaKeith Faulkner of Holly Springs, Abigail Demarest of Millington, Tenn., and Casey Rains of Pinckneyville, Ill. Photo by Deborah Freeland.

OXFORD, Miss. – Eight University of Mississippi students will have a leg up in the job market following graduation, thanks to this summer’s internships in New York with such companies as CBS News, Folio Literary Management and Backstage.

The New York Internship Experience is a combination of work and study that places Ole Miss undergraduates and graduate students in the Big Apple for a summer term. Students secure internships according to their area of interest. The opportunity is open to all majors and disciplines and allows students to earn up to nine hours of academic credit. The application deadline for next summer is Feb. 8.“The students’ work ethic, professional demeanor and general enthusiasm have really impressed New York employers,” said program director Laura Antonow, adjunct assistant professor of art. “This year, we had several past employers contact us in search of another Ole Miss intern for the summer. We have also had a lot of support from New York-area University of Mississippi alumni who have placed interns in their offices, mentored them in their field of interest, and offered them advice on working and living in New York.”

“As an aspiring writer, I’ve gotten a great feel for the business aspect of publishing,” said senior English major Mary Buchanan Sellers of Brandon, who interned at Folio. “Not only have I made some great friends who share similar goals, but I feel more confident in both my writing and my realistic expectations for the future.”

University of Mississippi student LaKeith Faulkner confers with an attorney at the New York Law Offices of Richard A. Burke where he interned this summer under Ole Miss' New York Internship program. Photo by Deborah Freeland.

Likewise, at CBS News’ “60 Minutes” program, broadcast journalism senior Gerard Manogin of Jackson said his summer experience was “a dream come true.”

“I had the opportunity to meet top executives in the industry and work with some of television’s greatest producers on future projects for the show.”

Broadcast journalism senior Casey Rains of Pinckneyville, Ill., interned at MFB Media Group. Rains said she wasn’t surprised that UM provides this unique learning option.

“I decided to attend Ole Miss because of its extensive journalism program and new Meek School of Journalism,” said Rains, who expects her New York experience will prove helpful during her military service. Following May graduation, to fulfill her ROTC obligation, she will be commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force, where she hopes to serve as a public relations officer.

“I will be on active duty traveling the world for at least four years, then after my term is finished, I will evaluate my life and see if I will continue my career in the military or pursue a civilian career in public relations,” Rains said.

LaKeith Faulkner of Holly Springs, a junior English major, interned in the Law Offices of Richard A. Burke. Faulkner said the experience pushed him closer to his goal of attending law school and entering the legal profession.

“I was able to gain hands-on experience on what it’s like to work in a business setting,” he said. “Being able to work closely with prominent lawyers, public figures and legal scholars, I had the opportunity of learning more about the realities of law practice.”

Rounding out the summer 2012 New York Internship Experience group of Ole Miss students and their intern locations were senior psychology major Abigail Demarest of Millington, Tenn., Waggo; senior marketing communications major Emma Holman of Falls Church, Va., dotbox; senior journalism major Molly Rhodes of Homosassa, Fla., National Center for Learning Disabilities; and senior English major Amanda Schnugg of Oxford, Backstage.

“In addition to the intense professional experience, students have the opportunity to go to the theater, visit world-class museums, try various ethnic foods and meet people from all over the world,” Antonow said. “Going with a group from Ole Miss, and with the structure of the NYIE program, students adjust to city living quickly so they can make the most of their experience.”

The New York Internship Experience is coordinated through the Division of Outreach and Continuing Education. For more information, visit