Go to work before you graduate

Did you know students who complete internships during their academic career have a significantly better chance of having a successful career in their field of study?

It’s true, internships provide an edge that can’t be found in the classroom.

On average, it takes a recent graduate anywhere from six months to a year to find their first post-grad position in their field of study. It’s a fact that students with internship experience often lean toward the shorter end of that spectrum.

Recognizing the importance of internships, we offer an internship course (CLA 2685) available for students to complete for academic credit. The course is open to any student in good academic standing.

Step 1: Secure an internship

One of the primary aims of our professional development team is to assist in the internship search and ensure students have a strong resume when applying for positions. Though we don’t place students, we work with employers and cultivate leads that we share with students that demonstrate a compatible interest. Students are also encouraged to be proactive and seek opportunities on their own via self-search and the Career Center’s Handshake tool.

Step 2: Meet with an academic advisor

Students are encouraged to meet with an academic advisor to determine how an internship fits into their academic plan. Our course, CLA 2685, counts simply as an upper-level elective within the college. Do you have room for elective credits? If so, how many? These are questions that only an academic advisor can answer.

Step 3: Meet with a professional development advisor

Once students have secured an internship and are ready to register for the course, they are required to meet with a professional development advisor and submit the internship contract. Our internship program is for variable academic credit, meaning students can register for anywhere from one credit to 12 credits, depending on how many hours they spend at their internship throughout the semester. Traditionally, every 50 hours spent on site is considered worth one credit.

(Note, students are not able to self-register for CLA 2685. The only way the course can be added to a roster is by following the three steps above.)

Step 4: The coursework

Once students are enrolled in the course, they are required to participate in weekly discussion topics conducted online and submit a pair of reflection papers. The majority of the grade, however, comes from supervisor feedback given at the middle and end of the semester. 

Image of student working on laptop