Internship Success Stories

Jordan Traut, Major (English and Anthropology) - Rugby News Service in Hirakata, Japan

"The best advice I ever got from a teacher is to apply for the things that seem impossible because 99% of your strongest competition will also think they don’t have a chance and suddenly your chances are 100% better".

Main responsibilities of the internship:  Attending pre-game and post-game conferences with the coaches, watching the games I was assigned to from the press section, creating questions to ask players in the media mixed zone, and then recording and publishing their quotes on a secured website for the international media to select and publish on their own platforms. Being an English and an Anthropology major, the most unexpectedly interesting part was seeing the different cultures interact with each other at the stadiums. Personalities really came out. I also loved my press pass, which allowed me to go “backstage” in the stadiums. The most difficult part was actually navigating the spaces as, often times, the only women working in the zones. It’s an adjustment to not see someone who looks like you being represented and made me grateful for the office I work in now, which has great diversity. 

What academic courses prepared you for your internship? Dr. Jakubiak’s New Dimensions to World Literature course and African American Literature course reinforced the significance of representing others’ words and language appropriately to ensure everyone is seen and heard. Dr. Jakubiak also invited guest authors to conference call with our classes where we prepared questions to ask them about their work and experience. I used those skills to come up with the question I would ask the players, sometimes on the spot. 

Advice for students seeking internships:  I would give them the same advice I was given a long time ago and that ran through my mind when I saw how popular the internship seemed to be with the other students at my university in Japan: so many people are intimidated by the thought of competition that they don’t try. Trying already makes you the strongest candidate in the pool. If you dream about something, go for it. You’ll never be worse off for trying. You’ll always be worse off thinking about all the chances you didn’t take. 

Any other information you would like to share?  The university I studied at in Japan wrote a few articles about me, one was in Japanese so I can’t read it. I gave it to my host parents. However, I recently found the English version they are advertising to prospective students. That is really exciting!