Published on February 16, 2015

Journalism Internships in Madrid

Filled with both modern and historic treasures, Spanish capital Madrid is the ideal backdrop for a fast-paced journalism and media internship. A journalism internship in Madrid not only provides the hands-on experience necessary to get ahead in the competitive media industry, but also offers young people the opportunity to explore a new language, city and way of life and network with media industry professionals and students from all over the world.

internships in Madrid

Hands-on, multicultural experience in a competitive field is hard to beat. Depending on the intern’s professional preferences, they can work for magazines and other media firms in Madrid’s diverse journalism industry. Instead of sitting passively inside a classroom, journalism internships in Madrid will challenge students to break out of their comfort zone and put their communications education into practice. More than that, at their internship journalism students work with established media industry professionals with whom they can form long-term relationships, opening up future doors into the industry in Spain and around the world.

With a sprawling metropolitan area of over 6 million people, Madrid is a moderately laid-back European city, practical for foreign students and interns looking to soak up a new culture and lifestyle. In Madrid, the workday rarely starts before 9 a.m. and often coworkers take several hours for a long lunch or siesta. The workday wraps up around 7 or 8 at night, when the city takes on a completely different light.

Thanks to Madrid’s safe, extensive and easy-to-use subway system, getting to and from an internship is a breeze. However, many may choose to walk instead, particularly when passing through the city’s historic center, home to gorgeous plazas, statues and museums. The centrally-located Plaza Mayor boasts a smattering of cafes and traditional shops along with a famous bronze statue of King Philip III. Walking around Madrid’s historical center, you may also stumble upon the iconic Royal Palace and the stunning Almudena cathedral.

internships in Madrid

After a challenging day of interviews, writing and research, Madrid’s nightlife offers a wide variety of ways to unwind. To start the evening, Madrid’s residents or “Madrileños” often gather for tapas to feast on small plates of local favorites like patatas bravas, pincho de tortilla and gallinejas, often accompanied with either beers or regional wine.

Like many cities of its size, Madrid has a lot to offer in terms of late-night entertainment. However, the native Flamenco shows are arguably the most popular among the city’s visitors. At restaurants called tablaos, one can enjoy a Flamenco dance show while enjoying a traditional Spanish meal. There are many varieties of musical entertainment in the city, including many clubs and dance halls that often open after midnight and keep their doors open until dawn (and sometimes later).

internships in Madrid

Journalism interns working in Madrid are encouraged to take day trips outside of the city on their weekends, as the city is strategically located near many nearby tourist destinations. A day trip to UNESCO World Heritage Site Toledo is included in The Intern Group journalism and media internship program, where interns can visit the iconic stone fortification Alcazar of Toledo. World Heritage City Segovia is also located just a train ride away from Madrid.

While gaining real-world professional experience, another perk of an internship based in Madrid is the opportunity to see some of the world’s finest art. The internationally famous mural Guernica by Spanish painter Pablo Picasso draws in visitors from around the world to the local Reina Sofia museum. Meanwhile, thousands of international visitors flock to the local Prado museum, which boasts works by Goya and Rubens.

Speaking and understanding Spanish is not a requirement for The Intern Group journalism and media internship in Madrid. Many interns, for example, work at Madrid’s English-language publication Guidepost. In fact, the internship abroad experience is a solid way to learn or improve a foreign language. The Madrid journalism internship program offers optional Spanish language classes at every level, providing students with a high-quality language education at the Don Quijote school to accompany real-world experience using Spanish. Though the city is international, many locals speak little English so interns have no trouble putting classes into practice.

An internship abroad in journalism broadens a budding professional’s concept of media and exposes students to cultural diversity within their field. On the ground in Madrid, interns can learn first-hand about the journalism industry in Spain and how it has evolved. Interns are able to compare the challenges and innovations in Spanish media to the industry in their home country with a unique perspective that will add another layer to their approach to reporting. Moreover, after having lived and worked abroad, interns will be more apt to adapt to new cities, cultures and newsrooms in the future. Having professional journalism experience in Madrid will add a new lens and insight to a young journalist’s repertoire that will no doubt juice up their writing, reporting and resume.

Apply now and boost your career!

Sources: Wolters World, Rick Steves, Museo Nacional del Prado, Wikipedia - Madrid, GoMadrid, TripAdvisor, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofia

Image 1. based on “Madrid, Spain” by Rick Ligthelm, CC-BY-2.0.

Image 2. based on "Tapas Bar San Sebastian" by Sanfamedia.com, CC-BY-2.0

Image 3. based on "Flamenco dance" by Hernán Piñera, CC-BY-2.0

The author
Elizabeth Trovall
After short stints in Argentina and Belize, Elizabeth is finishing up her third year in Santiago, Chile. Elizabeth writes about international internships, life abroad and professional development for The Intern Group. She also reports on politics, business and culture in Latin America for public radio and print media. An Austin, Texas native, Elizabeth first left home to earn her journalism degree from the Reynolds Institute of Journalism at the University of Missouri. Besides her friends and family, she misses live music and Mexican food the most.

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