Internships have been an important component of our degree program at Taipei Tech English. We started our internship program at Taipei Tech English in 2007, when the department partnered with King Car Education Foundation and Taoyuan County Government (now Taoyuan City) to establish the Happy English Village program in the Kuaile Elementary School in Taoyuan. Faculty members of the department designed the course materials for the Happy English Village program, and students who took the internship course were employed as teaching assistants in the program.
After this initial success, the department signed agreements with many other organizations and companies in the following years, including National Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall, National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall, Taipei Xihu Elementary School, Taiwan Knowledge Base, Central News Agency, British Chamber of Commerce in Taipei, Lazertrek, and Lado Management Consultants. These internship opportunities were offered to both our BA and MA students as elective course before 2012. During this time, there were 208 students who participated in the internship program, each completing fifty-six hours of internship.
In 2012, the department redesigned the internship program to broaden its scope and get students more engaged with the job market. The internship is now a required two-credit, 320-hour course in our BA program. The department has also extended the list of partner organizations and companies to include Institute for Information Industry, Huashan Cultural Park, the China Post, LiveABC Interactive Corporation, Amphenol LTW, Extra Points Taiwan, Tungnan University English Camp, Performing Arts School 36, Mercuries Life Insurance, Repotec Company, and more.
MA students may still choose an internship as an elective course, which is an approach we take to allow MA students to think about how their course of study can prepare them for particular types of careers. MA student Christina Liu’s thesis focused on Cultural Studies, but she tailored her program to the skills she wanted to acquire: “[Cultural Studies] students are allowed to take courses in the linguistics program, so I took a course on translation theories and was lucky enough to get an internship as a translator in CNA News.” She also participated in an academic conference in Macao.