(UPDATED 2/17/09)

Washington, D.C., public affairs firm GolinHarris has selected two West Virginia University P.I. Reed School of Journalism students to join its team as part of its ongoing Mountaineer in D.C. internship program.

Katelyn Culver of Point Pleasant and Nicole Fernandes of Charleston are each receiving a $2,500 stipend and a weekly salary to work at GolinHarris during the 2009 spring and summer sessions, respectively.

GolinHarris, one of the worlds leading public relations and government affairs firms, began the program in 2004 to provide School of Journalism students hands-on experience in public relations and marketing.

Effective this semester, GolinHarris made a new five-year commitment to continue the program and increased the number of positions from two to three. The fall 2009 intern has not been selected.

Were thrilled that GolinHarris has renewed its commitment to this outstanding internship program,said Maryanne Reed, dean of the School of Journalism.The internship provides our students the opportunity to gain real-world, professional experience and build their professional portfolios at a top international PR firm.

Culver, the daughter of Rick and Ute Culver, is a senior public relations student minoring in business administration. She worked as a public relations intern at the Mon General Hospital Foundation in spring 2008 and was a student leader and mentor for the schools Adventure WV summer 2008 program.

Fernandes, the daughter of Ronald and Rose-Marie Fernandes, is a May 2008 graduate and a graduate assistant for the schools Integrated Marketing Communications masters degree program. As an undergraduate student, she was involved in the WVU Honors College and named to the Deans and Presidents lists multiple times. She also worked as a marketing and communications intern for the Clay Center in Charleston in summer 2007.

Nurturing the communicators of tomorrow is an important mission of GolinHarris, and we are blessed to have a strong partnership with West Virginia University,said Lane Bailey, president of GolinHarris Public Affairs based in Washington, D.C.

Bailey worked with colleague Michael Fulton, executive vice president, and the school to establish the internship program. Bailey is a native of Princeton and Fulton, originally from Parkersburg, is a 1979 School of Journalism graduate.

Including Fulton, seven of the 55 full-time staff at the GolinHarris D.C. office are WVU alumni, two of whom are former Mountaineer in D.C. interns.

Established in 1956, GolinHarris is a leading public relations agency offering a distinctive combination of global resources and world-class expertise with tailored approaches and personal, focused attention in the Americas, Asia Pacific, Europe and the Middle East. Clients include Alpharma, Dow Chemical Co., McDonalds Corp., Nintendo of America Inc., Orange, TetraPak, Texas Instruments and Toyota Motor Sales USA Inc.

GolinHarriswork for Nintendo was selected as PR Campaign of the Year at the 2008 PRWeek Awards. In 2007, GolinHarris was selected Agency of the Year by The Holmes Report, Large PR Agency of the Year in the PRWeek Awards and PRWeek Magazines EditorsChoice. The agency is headquartered in Chicago and is a subsidiary of the Interpublic Group (NYSE: IPG ).