What is an Internship?
An internship is faculty mentor-guided experiential learning experience that empowers students to integrate knowledge and theory learned throughout the curriculum with practical application and skills development in a professional setting.
A meaningful internship is a partnership between Stetson University and a host employer, collaboratively defined and guided by the student, a faculty internship mentor and an on-site supervisor from the host employer.
To ensure that an experience is educational and is thus eligible to be considered a university-recognized internship, the following criteria must be met:
- The experience must be an extension of the curriculum -- a learning experience that provides for applying knowledge gained through the curriculum. It must not be simply to advance the operations of the host employer or be the work that a regular employee would routinely perform.
- The skills or knowledge learned must be transferable to other employment settings.
- The experience has a defined beginning and end, and a description of on-site internship functions, expectations and desired qualifications provided by the host employer.
- There are clearly developed learning objectives/goals, defined collaboratively by the student and faculty internship mentor, related to the professional goals of the student's academic coursework.
- There is on-site supervision by a professional with expertise and an educational and/or professional background in the field of the experience.
- Routine feedback is provided by the experienced on-site supervisor.
- Resources, equipment and facilities are provided by the host employer that support learning objectives/goals.
Where Do I Do an Internship?
Any setting where people work -- private businesses, government offices, non-profit organizations, schools, medical facilities or any desired place of business -- where you want to gain experience and build your knowledge/skills of a specific profession.
When Should I Do an Internship?
That's your choice! You can intern during the summer or during the school year, for several weeks or several months up to a year, for six to eight hours a week, up to 40 hours a week. Many structured internship programs prefer students in their junior or senior year. However, first-year students and sophomores may be able to create their own individualized internship experience as well.
Why Should I Do an Internship?
When you participate in an internship experience, you can:
- Determine if a particular field is a right fit for you
- Find out how to prepare for a career in a certain field
- Build a strong resume
- Develop a network of professional contacts for future opportunities and references
- Learn which workplace skills you need to develop
- Find out what to expect when you transition into a full-time job
- Potentially turn your internship into a full-time job opportunity
- Discover what career fields and jobs you DO NOT want to pursue.
Internships are essential in today's college employment marketplace. Many employers that hire college graduates consider internship experience to be just as important as grades and organizational involvement. When it comes time to interview and hire, employers usually select graduates who have completed internships over those who have not.
How Do I Find an Internship?
- Use the Internship Checklist. It provides important steps that will help lead you to success in your search.
- ACADEMIC DEPARTMENTS If you have not talked to your advisor, make sure you do! Advisors, faculty, departmental catalog boards are GREAT resources for internship opportunities! Your academic department often will have an internship contact and a listing of internship opportunities showing where students have interned in the past.
- COLLEGE CENTRAL NETWORK(Stetson's job & internship database)
- INTERNSHIPS.COM Find great LOCAL, NATIONAL, and INTERNATIONAL internships. Registration Code: stetson
- Network! Set up an informational interview with a contact in your field of interest, contact an alumni through our CAREER NETWORK , talk to your family, friends, and faculty who may know of places or people who can provide you with a great internship experience! Get yourself out there!
- Visit the Career Development Resource Library in Flagler Hall, Suite 102. Also visit the duPont-Ball Library on campus for additional internship information.
- Internship Links - This list is just a sampling of internship resources on the web.
- Company/Organization websites if you have an idea of the companies you are interested in, go directly to their website (a Google search can get you there usually) and they often list their internships under Careers, Jobs, Human Resources or About Us section.
- Campus Organizations Honor Societies, and Professional Organizations
- Attend Career Fairs! Stetson's Annual Career Expo (ACE) is held every year.
- Develop Your Own! Many internships aren't actually posted positions. You can develop your own by contacting a company of interest. Research employers and send a letter of interest or call by phone to discuss a potential internship. Not sure how? Make an appointment with a counselor in Career Development to learn more about creating your own internship in your field of interest.
Interested in a Research Internship? Stetson University Undergraduate Research Experience (SURE) Program offers twelve undergraduate research internship positions. Complete information and applications are available at: http://www.stetson.edu/other/research/sure.php