Malkoski funds underpaid internships, experiential learning opportunities

Wednesday, November 15, 2023 - 11:15am

Kris Malkoski is a University of Nebraska–Lincoln 1982 journalism graduate who has served in several roles at the University. She's a member of the CoJMC's Comprehensive Campaign Committee and the University of Nebraska Foundation Board of Trustees, and she has served as a mentor for the Nebraska Women's Leadership Network, formerly known as Cather Circle.

"The University of Nebraska plays a leadership role among universities in preparing students for real-life experiences with opportunities like Buoy and KRNU," Malkoski said. "As a successful leader in business, due in part to my educational experience at UNL, my role is to help extend the awareness of and fundraising for this wonderful University, and to continue the academic impact the University provides for students."

Malkoski was was with Procter and Gamble for 14 years, rising to the level of VP/General Manager Healthcare. One of her roles was as marketing director of analgesics where she was responsible for the marketing campaign that introduced P&G's "Aleve," a pain reliever that set records for market share after its introduction. In 1995, Malkoski was recognized as one of the best in brand building when she was named to Advertising Age's Marketing 100.

Throughout her involvement at the University, Malkoski gathered that many students rely on a combination of professional mentors and internships to enhance their education.

"Mentorship is critical to help young professionals grow and mature in their careers," Malkoski said. "As a mentor, I can provide perspective on problems they may be facing for the first time, or advice on what’s required for their career growth. Students shouldn’t wait for someone to offer to mentor, they should seek to find someone they can count on."

When it comes to learning, Malkoski is a firm believer that, many times, the experience far outweighs the compensation. Still, she recognizes that few students can afford to accept unpaid or underpaid internships. 

Malkoski's passion for helping create opportunities for students to gain real-life experience and removing obstacles like financial hardship led to the establishment of the Kris Malkoski Internship Fund.

"Internships will always be important because it’s a great way for businesses to 'kick the tires' on a future employee to ensure they will deliver growth and value for their company," Malkoski said. "It is my hope that my scholarships enable students to have experiences they may not otherwise have been able to afford."

Each spring, CoJMC students apply for $1,000 awards to support their summer internships, including the Kris Malkoski Internship Fund, which supports advertising and public relations majors pursuing unpaid or underpaid internships.  

Recent awardees include:  

  • Mallory Comley, a junior advertising and public relations major from Schuyler who spent last summer with the Lincoln Saltdogs baseball team as a promotions and event planning intern. 

  • Emma Dostal, a senior advertising and public relations major from Roscoe, Illinois who spent the summer of 2022 in Washington, D.C., with the United States Grain Council. During her internship, Dostal redesigned the Grain Council website and planned a conference that brought all nine U.S. Grain Council's international offices to D.C.

  • Claire Wiens, a 2022 master of arts graduate from McPherson, Kansas. Wiens worked for the Wichita Wind Surge minor league baseball team as a promotions intern, writing scripts for the announcer and coordinating contracts and events among sponsors.

The Kris Malkoski Internship Fund was established in 2012 at the University of Nebraska Foundation to benefit and support the College of Journalism and Mass Communications. For information on giving to the college, contact Director of Development Jeremy Lohrman at or 402-458-1177.

Kris Malkoski