ACOSS-UTS Media Internship Program

General guidelines

 ACOSS welcomes applications from Media, Journalism and Public Relations students for a minimum placement of three months during 2018. We are particularly interested in high achieving third-year undergraduate or postgraduate students who are ready for practical experience in the field with the national peak body for the social and community sector based in Surry Hills, Sydney.

Student placements can only involve work considered part of ACOSS’s core business, in line with current strategic objectives and organisational priorities.

ACOSS is not in the position to offer placements to students who wish to design their own tasks or projects, though we will endeavour to make tasks as diverse and interesting as possible, and design a work plan in collaboration with the selected intern. ACOSS will aim to provide meaningful and relevant experience to complement the student’s university studies.

Due to the specialised nature of our work and the limited capacity to supervise students, ACOSS will outline in this document the specific attributes, requirements, tasks and skills expected of internship candidates. Given ACOSS’s advocacy role as the national voice for the needs of people affected by poverty and inequality, we have a preference for students with a well-developed understanding and demonstrated commitment to social justice and equity issues.

Who we are looking for

  • Third-year undergraduate or postgraduate Media, Journalism, and Public Relations students
  • Demonstrated commitment to social justice and equity issues
  • Video production skills – filming and editing (YouTube)
  • Social media proficiency – Facebook, Twitter, Instagram blogs, etc.
  • Solid writing and all-round communications skills
  • Good online researching skills
  • Students from low socio-economic, Indigenous and ethnic minority backgrounds fitting the above description are encouraged to apply.

The Role and Tasks

For the current placement, ACOSS is particularly looking for someone with advanced video making skills for the production of an upcoming national campaign video, and proficient in the use of social media channels.

However, the role expected of the intern may vary and will be negotiated at the commencement of the placement. It may also include; updating and maintaining media contacts and membership lists; online research tasks; and general administration duties such as filing, photocopying, and other admin duties as directed.

All applications will be considered on an individual basis based on personal competencies and relevant experience (both personal and professional) that demonstrate a capacity to achieve the agreed outcomes. Although no previous work experience is necessary you will have to clearly demonstrate your skills level in video production and proficient use of social media channels through examples of past work.

What we offer

  • In-person 1 on 1 mentoring and training in many aspects of the work of a media advisor, such as writing media releases, digital media content, campaign promotional video production.
  • Understanding of media landscape and how to connect with journalists and get stories published.
  • Feedback on work before it’s published and ongoing supervision
  • Credits for any work produced, especially videos
  • A written letter of reference
  • Possibility of paid work opportunities post internship with ACOSS and/or our wide members.

Resume and Interview

All applicants must submit a brief resume via email ([email protected]) with examples of their work and outline how the student has attained training; knowledge; skills; experience in the key areas outlined in the tasks/roles. No covering letter is required though the email should clearly state why they are interested in the role and what they would bring to ACOSS.

Learning Contract

ACOSS will negotiate with candidates to establish mutually agreed objectives and outcomes as part of a ‘learning contract’. The ACOSS Media will be responsible for supervising the intern with the assistance of the Director of Policy and Advocacy, and subject to the approval of the CEO.

Prior to commencement, the student and ACOSS must agree on the expectations and responsibilities of both parties. In general the ‘learning contract’ will be set out by the academic institution and signed by the student, a representative of the institution, and ACOSS.

The ACOSS supervisor will ensure that the following have been agreed prior to commencement:

  • A regular meeting for supervision and feedback
  • Date and time for formal induction
  • Knowledge of student’s learning goals
  • Specific tasks to be undertaken
  • Allocation of responsibilities
  • Timelines for completion of tasks
  • Desired level of achievement at completion of placement, including method of assessment and evaluation
  • Allocation of resources, including access to office space, computers, and other physical resource
  • ACOSS human resource procedures, equal opportunity, harassment, occupational health & safety, and intellectual property policies.

Attendance Pattern

Due to capacity constraints, ACOSS prefers interns to attend one full-time day per week for a minimum period of three months or a total of 100 hours. Extra days can be agreed to during specific projects requiring attendance on days other than the agreed regular day of attendance. On agreement the internship may also be extended beyond three months.


In general there is no remuneration or reimbursement of personal expenses.  Travel expenses to and from the COSS office and home are not reimbursable. Costs incurred at ACOSS’ request are fully reimbursable. These include work related expenses such as telephone and fax charges, photocopying, courier fees, and travel to events or to cover stories on internship attendance day.

Public Liability Insurance

The student’s educational institution will be required to provide insurance cover for any potential injury the intern may sustain while they are undertaking the internship at the ACOSS premises or activities as part of the internship. The student’s institution will also be required to provide public liability cover for damage the student may cause to ACOSS property.

Resolving difficulties on placement

If there are problems arising from a student’s performance or behaviour on placement, these should be discussed in the first instance with the student. If not resolved, then the academic liaison should be consulted. The same processes apply if the student experiences difficulties affecting their learning and/or performance. The selected intern will be on trial for the first month of the placement and ACOSS reserves the right to terminate an internship if it determines that the student is not suitable in line with ACOSS organisational principles and values, or fails to perform at the level expected and outlined in the ‘learning contract’. 


At the conclusion of the internship, the ACOSS supervisor(s) will provide the student with some feedback on their performance in a brief written completion report as required by the student’s educational institution. This report usually includes an assessment of whether the student achieved his or her learning goals as described in the learning contract, as well as any other comments on his or her general capacities and performance. Students may also be given a reference detailing their contribution to ACOSS during the placement.

Further Information

If you require any further details on the ACOSS media internship program please contact the Media Advisor, Fernando de Freitas on 02 9310 6209 [email protected].