FAQ Internships: Students
Frequently Asked Questions about Internships
What is an internship?
An internship is an opportunity provided by an employer for the purpose of providing a substantial learning experience about a particular field while gaining real world work experience.
Academic Internships should include the following:
- Authentic, structured and meaningful work experience with increasing responsibility.
- Well-defined learning objectives, which are measurable and can be completed over the course of the internship. Learning may be creative in nature, project-oriented, facilitate the acquisition of new knowledge, and/or personal development.
- Participation in a planned learning environment, within a formal place of business, with direct supervision and on-going training. Students must report to a business site; internships that allow students to remotely/virtually or in a home-based business do not meet approved internship standards.
- Registration for the Fall or Spring semester by the end of the second week of the term. Registration for Summer semesters must occur by the 2nd day of each summer block.
How will I benefit from interning?
How will I benefit?
- Gain experience in a professional work environment
- Engage in career discovery, exploration, and preparation
- Apply academic learning in a work environment connected to potential career pathways
- Contribute to an organization in a meaningful way
- Build relationships and expand your professional network
- Prove your worth to a company or organization where long-term opportunities might be available
How do I find an internship?
To Search for Internships…
- Meet with an Industry Specialist to learn about employer expectations and the nuances of applying for an internship within your field of interest
- Get your resume reviewed and approved on Handshake to gain access to internship postings. For resume support, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
- On Handshake, select 'Jobs' and filter by internship, key words, location, or other job features.
Paid, Unpaid, or Credit?
A variety of options exist for student interns:
- Paid Internship: minimum wage laws apply (recommended)
- Unpaid Internship: for-profit companies must meet The Fair Labor Standards Act
- Academic Credit: you can receive credit for a paid or unpaid internship but you must register to do so
How do I enroll for academic credit?
What do I need to know about Summer Internships?
- Start your search early - summer internships are competitive and some organizations may recruit as early as November or December
- All standard tuition fees and schedules apply for registered internship units. Consult the catalog for the specific amount
- A summer scholarship is available to cover the cost of up to two units of credit when you enroll for at least one unit of graded internship credit
- Please Note: The units you are enrolled in will be charged to your student account. A few business days later the 2-unit scholarship will be applied. If the scholarship is not on your account a 5-7 business days after the summer session in which you are enrolled has begun, please contact Financial Aid
What are prospective employers looking for?
- Students with transferable skills like communication, problem-solving, leadership, teamwork, analytical thinking, and creative thinking
- Students who participate in clubs or activities related to their major or those who hold leadership positions in student organizations
- Students who participate in volunteer activities, student employment, internships, or undergraduate research
- Any kind of relevant work experience or special skill sets
Thinking about getting an internship?
- Start at least semester in advance
- Update and target your resume and cover letter for every internship application
- Meet with an Industry Specialist to learn more about being a competitive candidate in your field of interest
- Consider options through your personal and professional network
- Seek faculty input or guidance
Pro Tip: Look for an internship that offers you substantial experience. Determine how this experience will benefit your education and career goals. Ask how closely you will work with top professionals in the field. Ask what types of orientation, ongoing training, and periodic reviews will be scheduled. Finally, design an educational objective that links your classroom learning to your work on the job.
How do I contact my faculty advisor or division?
Are scholarships available?
If you are enrolled in an internship course for graded credit, you may be eligible for a scholarship. Learn more about Internship Scholarships.