Full-timePublic Relations Certificate

Public relations practicum

A full-time public relations practicum will give you three weeks of unpaid, on-the-job training in producing PR products for real-world initiatives.

This is your chance to cement your public relations knowledge and skills, gain invaluable work relations experience, and build important industry contacts.

May–July 2021 program update: Practicum experience is a key component of the program, and we want to ensure you don’t miss your opportunity. Due to the rapidly evolving COVID-19 situation, we are working with practicum employers on how best to support our students and their practicums. Working with your practicum facilitator, you may choose to:

  • Complete the practicum remotely with employers that can ensure practicum activities can be carried out fully online or
  • Defer the practicum to a later date 

What will I learn?

By the end of the practicum, you will be able to do the following:

  • Confidently produce communications products such as news releases, backgrounders, fact sheets, opinion editorials, speeches, and web and social media copy
  • Work with and accept guidance from senior PR practitioners and project leaders
  • Relate to inner workings of a real-world PR environment and gain valuable working experience with a local communications team

How will I learn?

You'll work under the guidance of a workplace mentor on assigned tasks.

How will I be evaluated?

  • Completion of your practicum
  • Evaluation by practicum facilitator
  • Evaluation by workplace mentor
  • Work assignments

Frequently asked questions about the practicum

What will I do during my PR practicum?

In addition to getting invaluable work experience that will look great on your résumé, you’ll establish key industry connections that will help you begin your new career. And you won’t just be getting coffee. You’ll build up your portfolio by contributing to real public relations campaigns, materials, and activities.

Your practicum might even lead to a job. Many of our graduates receive job offers from their practicum employers even before they graduate.

Why do I need to do a practicum?

We believe in integrating work with learning because today’s job market is competitive. When it comes to landing your dream job, relevant work experience is non-negotiable.

When will I do my practicum?

You will complete your practicum in weeks seven through nine of the PR program. Generally, you'll work Monday to Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

How will I secure my practicum?

You will spend part of your second class in the public relations program reviewing best practices for choosing your practicum placement.

The practicum facilitator will provide you with a list of companies that have approached us for practicum students (between five and 10 companies approach us each term). Placements are available on a first-come, first-serve basis.

You may choose from the opportunities we provide or find your own based on your professional interests, but please remember that you are entirely responsible for finding your own practicum.

You will consult with the practicum facilitator before approaching an organization about a placement. Please finalize your placement by the end of the third week of classes.

Once you confirm your placement, you will provide the practicum facilitator with contact information for your mentor, who will coordinate a signed agreement. The practicum facilitator will work with your mentor in evaluating your work performance when you finish your practicum.

Whose responsibility is it to find my practicum placement?

It is your responsibility to secure a practicum, which is mandatory if you wish to graduate with SFU’s Public Relations Certificate.

Where will I do my practicum?

Practicum hosts vary, but in the past, our practicum hosts have included the following:

  • Jive Communications
  • Peak Communicators
  • Popcorn
  • Talk Shop
  • Whitecaps FC
  • Change Heroes
  • Curve Communications
  • LBMG
  • YVR
  • War Room
  • BC Children's Hospital Foundation