Proposal for Social Media Humanities Communication Internship 

Purpose of this Proposal: This plan for a Center for Humanities Communication (CHC) “NextGen Co-Creator Internship” is intended as a draft proposal that can be shown for consultation to:

  • experts in social media creation and management, communication (including science communication), journalism, public relations, and others;
  • humanities organizations in which student interns and early career professionals might be placed;
  • foundations and other agencies that might advise on support for launching such an internship program;
  • and potential student interns and early career professionals themselves who might have useful feedback.

Proposal version 1.0, May 27, 2024 — developed by Christine Henseler and Isabell Sluka of the CHC, with thanks for feedback from Humanities Council leaders and to Stephanie Springer and Brittney Crawford at the University of Arizona.

What is our Mission?

The Social Media Humanities Communication Internship is a nationwide (paid) summer program that professionally trains and mentors a skillful and creative network of participants from diverse fields who are interested in expanding their writing and storytelling skill sets into the digital realm, specifically through social media, and in putting these skills to work at humanities organizations nationwide.

This internship contributes to nurturing the next generation of humanities communicators, making significant strides in the emerging field of humanities communication and shaping public perceptions of the humanities. In an era marked by increasing skepticism, particularly toward the humanities, this contribution holds immeasurable value especially given that a study by Morning Consult revealed that more than half of Gen Zers spend four or more hours daily on social media, where they not only connect with friends but also conduct information searches.

However, Gen Zers engagement with social media transcends personal use. Research conducted by HigherVisibility reveals that over 25% percent of Gen Z individuals aspire to become “content creators.” Correspondingly, there is a strong demand for content creators not just in traditional sectors like marketing and communications but across the entire job market. According to Goldman Sachs research the total addressable market of the creator economy could roughly double in size over the next five years to $480 billion by 2027 from $250 billion today. Consequently, the ability to communicate ideas in creative and engaging ways is increasingly valuable and sought after by both employers and future employees. 

Nonetheless, educational institutions seem to be falling short in adequately preparing young individuals for careers in these burgeoning fields. 

What are the problems we are trying to solve?

The NextGen Co-Creator Internship serves a three-part solution: 

1. The internship meets the aspirations of humanities participants seeking to expand their interest in writing, communication, marketing, creativity, gamification, film production, design and data visualization through hands-on experiences.

2. The internship addresses the communication challenges faced by humanities organizations to reach and engage younger generations and to develop fresh and new narratives about the humanities.

3. The program capitalizes the power of social media platforms to build and cultivate connections with individuals underrepresented in the humanities and the academy and offers meaningful means for mitigating local deficits related to low structural diversity and inequity.

Who is this program for?


To be eligible to apply for the Co-Creator Internship applicants must be:

  • Enrolled or accepted at an accredited college or university within the United States or U.S. territories as either an undergraduate or graduate student and earn and maintain a minimum cumulative 3.0 grade point average (GPA) on a 4.0 scale (or equivalent on another identified scale). 
  • Or, be currently employed in a humanities or communications-focused position in any organization or business (including self-employment), for no more than five years.
  • Or, provide other evidence of experience and interest.
  • All participants must fully commit to all pre-and post-internship activities as well as a 30-hour work schedule over two months in the summer (with the option of working in person, remote, or hybrid depending on the needs of each hosting organization) and to attend and participate at the Friday weekly (remote) Co-Creation HUBs (more detail below).

How and where will participants be placed during their internship?

Participants may be placed at any participating Humanities organizations in the United States through the following process:

  1. You will first apply to through the CHC Co-Creator Program Application Portal
  2. The CHC Internship Leadership will review the applications, interview, and accept candidates.
  3. Accepted applicants will apply directly to posted Internships offered by

Humanities organizations. These posts will include a description of:

  • The Project
  • Expectations/Responsibilities
  • Supervisor
  • Location
  • Exact Dates 
  • Whether the position is in person, remote, or hybrid
  1. Humanities Organizations will engage in their own review process. If accepted, they will inform the CHC and participants will officially become a CHC Social Media Intern.
  2. The CHC will then communicate with the accepted interns regarding program details related to pay and travel, and all other programmatic details. 

Will this be a paid internship?

Yes. To allow all participants to participate in this program, this internship pays each person $600.- for 30-hours of work a week (that’s $20.-/hr), plus $1200 for housing/month (adjusted for inflation). All travel costs will also be covered.

Will supervisors get paid too? 

Yes. It is important to recognize that the supervision of interns takes time  and that human dn financial resources at host institutions may be scarce. Therefore, this program will also provide additional stipends to the “Intern Supervisors” of $500.- week.

What is the structure of this program?

  1. Pre-Internship Training 
  • This training consists of a 3-week intensive online program of 2-hrs each evening, from Mondays to Fridays (this structure will allow participants to hold a day job, if desired). The program will introduce and develop essential skills in social media communication and engagement around challenges and opportunities afforded by humanities communication practices. This program includes three main elements:
  • Technical Training
    • A Bootcamp focused on technical training across various digital platforms.
  • Training in Storytelling
    • How do you tell a good story? How do you make it stick? What pitfalls to avoid? How to reach new audiences? Ethical considerations. How does humanities communication look differently through different eyes, and for different segments of people in different parts of the country? 
  • The Humanities Across the Professions
  • What are the Humanities? Where can they be found? What Humanities organizations exist and what are their roles? What career paths are available in the humanities? What are the do’s and don’ts on the job.
  1. Summer Internship

During the summer internship one or more Social Media Communication experts will be available to provide feedback and guide participants in the creation of high quality materials. 

  • 2 months, over the summer.
  • Internship takes place from Monday to Thursday each week.
  • Every Friday: Co-Creation HUB. All participants are brought together over zoom to:
  1. Share, reflect and learn from each other through conversation.
  2. Creatively brainstorm and workshop with experts.
  3. Hear and learn from young professionals through a speaker series called Notes from the Field: Young Innovators Speaker Series.
  4. Identify future career options and communicate transferable professional skills.
  1. Post-Internship Professional Development

One week after the end of the internship, participants will gather remotely for 1.5-2 hours to share the work they completed over the summer and share their final Shout Out campaigns.

  • Professional E-Portfolio

Over the course of their internship, participants will populate an e-portfolio of their work. This e-portfolio will serve to identify and articulate transferable skills and apply for careers in the social media communication field in the future.  

  • Final Shout Out Campaign

Each intern will create a social media Shout Out campaign of their choice meant to showcase their abilities and provide participants the opportunity to develop their own voices and ideas based on their learning over the entire program. Each participant will be tasked to advance their work on social media and provide a professional impact assessment (who do they reach and how?)

  1. Social Media Communication Ambassadors Award

Exemplary interns will be chosen to receive an ”Ambassadors Award” which will identify them as highly qualified and dedicated individuals representing the values of the NextGen Co-Creator Internship and Social Media Humanities Communication more broadly. As CHC Social Media Ambassadors, participants will receive a range of benefits::

  • A $200.- Award check.
  • Free Professional Career Training. Participants would have access to most of the CHC Training programs for free. 
  • Advisory Board. Ambassadors of the highest quality may be selected to be on the CHC Social Media Advisory Board.
  • Community Outreach: Ambassadors could apply for stipends to further develop social media campaigns specifically meant to reach out and engage their own or other communities.
  • Recommendation Letters. Ambassadors would be eligible to request recommendation letters for employment.
  • NextGen Leaders and Mentors. Ambassadors could lead future training sessions and mentor future participants by sharing their experiences and providing guidance and support to potential applicants interested in the field of humanities communication.
  • Feedback and Improvement: Ambassadors would assist in collecting feedback from peers and community members to help the program improve its offerings and address the evolving needs of aspiring humanities communicators.

Ambassadors will serve as vital advocates for the program’s leadership, relevance and success. They will help the managing directors and the Advisory Board to stay closely connected to the needs, interests, and experiences of young people across different groups and sectors. Through their active engagement, they will play a crucial role in enhancing the program’s visibility, they will help foster an inclusive and up-to-date culture of learning and engagement, and build a robust community of social media humanities communicators. 


  • Certification: participants who complete all aspects of the program will receive an official Certification.
  • Course Credit: if desired participants may seek internship course credits at their host institutions.

Program Assessment and Dissemination

  • Exit Interviews: will be conducted with all participants and all intern supervisors
  • Intern Follow-ups: we will keep track of what interns do post-internship
  • Program Webpage and Social Media: Student portraits and projects will be exhibited on the program webpage, disseminated on social media and uploaded to the CHC.
  • Recordings: Whenever possible, sessions with experts will be recorded and uploaded to be shared with others open access, free of charge.
  • How To Guides: The managing director will design “How To” Guides that will also be uploaded to the CHC.

What is the organizational structure?

  • Executive Directors
  • Managing Directors
  • Advisory Board
    • Executive Directors
    • Managing Directors
    • Leaders from Humanities Councils & Other Organizations
    • Experts in Social Media Communication
    • Ambassadors