Whether you’re a Nursing, Education, Business or any of the Letters & Science majors, internships can play a pivotal role in your job search following graduation. They help you gain experience and decide if a specific industry is right for you.
Often the vocabulary associated with experiential education (out of class work experience) can be confusing. Many times, this vocabulary can be found being used interchangeably and therefore referring to numerous opportunities. Learn more about the following definitions and what they mean to you.
Internships are typically one-time work or service experiences related to your major or career goal. The internship plan generally involves you, the student, working in a professional setting under the supervision and monitoring of practicing professionals.
Internships can be paid or unpaid, and you may or may not receive academic credit for performing the internship.
A Co-op or Cooperative education provides you with work experience that is related to your major or career goal. The typical program through the UW Oshkosh campus includes a one-semester, full-time opportunity while not taking any other classes. Virtually all co-op positions are paid and the vast majority involves some form of academic credit.
A practicum is generally a one-time work or service experience completed by you, the student, as part of an academic class. Some practica offer pay but many don’t. Almost all are done for academic credit.
An externship or job shadowing experience allows you, the student, to spend between a day and several weeks observing a professional on the job. Such experiences are unpaid; however, some colleges and universities pick up travel and/or living expenses. Externships and job shadowing experiences are generally not done for academic credit.
Internships for Academic Credit
At UW Oshkosh you can earn academic credit for participating in internships. Once you have an internship opportunity, gaining academic credit may be an ideal situation to gain elective credits or credits in your major.
Courses for students interested in credit for internships, co-op, externships, field placements, and experiential education are available by college.
- College of Business
- College of Education & Human Services
- College of Letters & Sciences
- College of Nursing
To learn more about the College of Letters and Science Internship Courses sponsored by Career Services download the brochure here.
Even if your degree does not require you to participate in an internship, co-op or practicum, there are several benefits to having participated in one.
Internship Search Strategies
Landing an internship can be a very similar process to finding a full-time job. Many of the same strategies and activities will be the same as well. Below are a variety of methods and suggestions for landing an internship.
- Develop a resume and cover letter, all tailored to each position you apply for.
- Talk to the appropriate internship director, coordinator or faculty.
- Check the internship postings on Handshake.
- Set up a job agent to receive email updates on your chosen search.
- Attend job fairs and career workshops to network with prospective employers.
- Check with your major’s department for possible internship leads or to check bulletin boards that may have postings.
- Improve your interviewing skills by attending mock interviews.
- Be active in your search by following up on any possible leads or applications you may have sent out.
- Alert family, friends, faculty and those in your network you are searching and include a copy of your resume and criteria for your search.
- If there is a specific company or organization that you are interested in, check their website or give them a call about internship opportunities.
- Utilize On-Campus Interviewing for internships that are posted in Handshake.
- Stay after class to talk to class speakers and guests about your interests in your field and their connections or opportunities.
How to Maximize Your Internship
Once you have an internship, there are a few tips to get the most out of the experience. Learn more about what you can do to enhance your new opportunities.
Internship Maximization Tips
- Learn as much as you can about the organization.
- Keep a weekly journal of your experience (i.e. activities and projects).
- Sit down with your supervisor and establish mutually agreed-upon goals so you know what is expected of you.
- Become familiar with all technology used.
- Develop positive traits (i.e. punctuality, dependability).
- Don’t be afraid to ask a lot of questions and be sure to follow the rules and regulations.
- Understand that some general office work is part of the job.
- Introduce new ideas gradually and avoid trying to change too much too soon.
- Ask for more responsibility and actively look for things to do.
- Network! Build bridges with the people who are doing what you think you would like to do in the future. They may be able to help you in your current position or lead to contacts for future opportunities.
- Become familiar with other interns in the office. Provide a support group for each other and develop friendships. (This will help you when your internship is far away from your normal activities.)
Internship Programs at UW Oshkosh
- Great Lakes Career Ready Internships
- STEP: Student Titan Employment Program
- International Internship Programs
The Great Lakes Career Ready Grants provide funding for partner colleges in six states to build programs that support students with financial need, offering paid internship opportunities relevant to their area of study.
The grant has three requirements to consider before students are fully eligible for the grant.
1. Financial Eligibility – we would need your student id#, year in school (must be a junior or senior at time of internship), and the semester you intend to do your internship. Once I have this information I can determine if you demonstrate financial eligibility.
2. Match Component – Organizations who host interns are asked to match the grant in some funding – $250 for non-profit organizations and $500 for-profit organizations. Before students complete the paperwork needed, Director Jaime Page-Stadler will reach out to your targeted organization/company to discuss the match. Once the match is secured, you would then complete an internship agreement form. Please note: If target organization cannot match the grant, unfortunately students would not be eligible for further consideration for the grant. It would be still possible for the student to complete the internship unpaid.
3. Professional Skills Component – ALL students who participate in the grant are expected to complete a professional skills course. You may participate in the professional skills course prior to the internship or concurrent to your internship.
Professional skills courses that meet this requirement are limited to (no exceptions or substitutions will be considered):
- Business 284: Professional Skills in Business
- Professional Counseling 202: Career Planning & Implementation (there will be an online section offered each semester)
- Human Services 204: Professional Career Skills in Human Services Leadership
- Interdisciplinary Studies 208: Professional Career Skills in Math & Natural Science
- Interdisciplinary Studies 209: Professional Career Skills in Social Sciences
- 73 per year (focus on new internships and new employers)
- Maximum pay out of up to 200 hours per student
- (69) $10 an hour (4) $15 specific to information technology, computer science, engineering technology, chemistry, & biology majors
- Junior/Senior Status
- Host organization willing to meet the Grant Match Component
- Demonstrate financial need (Determined by Financial Aid)
- Participation/Completion of a Professional Skills course
- students participating in co-ops, student teaching, social work or nursing practicums
- international students & graduate students
- experiences involving political campaigns or religious ministry
- on-campus internships
- international/abroad experiences
Great Lakes Career Ready Student Process:
1. Secure an unpaid internship by searching Handshake or on your own
2. Express interest in participating in the grant and verify eligibility for grant by sending an email including your:
- Full Name
- ID Number
- Year in school
- Semester when you plan on doing the internship
- Name of Organization hosting you for the internship and Supervisor’s name – we will outreach regarding the Match Component
3. Once the Match Component is verified – complete Internship Agreement
4. Enroll in a Professional Skills course or confirm completion of a Professional Skills course
5. Confirm grant approval
6. Submit documentation for payroll processing
6. Log hours daily via Google Sheets
- Payment for hours worked will occur bi-weekly on the current payroll schedule
7. Half way through your internship, send in a picture of yourself at your internship with a quote about your experience to Career Services.
8. Finalize evaluations and surveys
For more information or to connect with the Grant Assistant please email:firstname.lastname@example.org
The Student Titan Employment Program (STEP) offers undergraduate and graduate students unique high-impact learning opportunities. As a student worker in STEP, students can earn money while working on innovative projects for a campus department or unit.
Depending on the needs of campus units, students may participate in projects in areas such as media services, student-faculty research, supplemental instruction, library assistance, instructional technology and academic computing support, and Web page development and maintenance.
In Titan Jobs, you can search for these positions under position type, and selecting “STEP”. Based on that search criterion, all current STEP positions will appear.
Office of International Education at UW Oshkosh
By connecting with the OIE office at UW Oshkosh you can get connected to many study abroad and National Student Exchange programs that offer internship opportunities.
Cross Cultural Solutions
Students interested in education, health or social services have the opportunity to intern in one of 10 countries, including Xi’an, China; San Carlos, Costa Rica; Guatemala City, Guatemala; and more. Dates vary, but internships are available year round. Summers, interim or winter break are definitely a possibility. There is a three to 12 week minimum/maximum, which varies by country.
The Intern Abroad program is an incredible opportunity to have an international internship or to gain work experience in the areas of health, education, or social services. Cross-Cultural Solutions (CCS) is a recognized leader in international volunteering, and the Intern Abroad program provides a supportive and academic framework to the volunteer experience. It’s unique because its academic structure will help you pick an area of focus and set your learning objectives.
While interning abroad, you will have an intern advisor, and have to log your experiences as well as complete a summary project. All CCS programs include a volunteer placement, culture and learning activities based on your placement, free time for travel, and lodging in CCS Home-Base, where you will stay with other volunteers.
AustraLearn specializes in providing students with high quality educational programs in Oceania (Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific). The Professional Development for Academic Credit (PDAC) Internships are examples of highly desirable placements throughout the AustraLearn program. Placement opportunities are available in many fields, such as:
All placements are with exceptional organizations geared towards your particular field of study. Placement supervisors work with you to establish a set of responsibilities to ensure that your goals and interests are met during the placement.
World Endeavors offers unique and fulfilling volunteer, study and internship programs in communities around the world, including:
My World Abroad
Expert advice for anyone considering going abroad to study, volunteer, intern, teach, travel or work. Living abroad can be inspiring, challenging and even life changing. Knowing what to expect is your key to success – and My World Abroad shows first-year students as well as graduates how to build their credentials and prepare for work in the global economy. Discover opportunities, acquire skills and develop the all-important global perspective with this easy-to-use interactive online guide and toolkit.