CHARACTERISTICS OF PROFESSIONAL INTERNSHIPS:
An internship is a new learning experience, for credit, provided for selected and specially prepared individuals who aspire to become professional practitioners, apply their academic skills and knowledge to work environments, and explore vocations. It is an experience of "reality" in which the knowledge, the skills, and the judgment of the intern are put into play in solving problems, which characterize professional practice.
Each academic department may establish an internship course according to the College-wide policies for new course development. Once established, students may apply to take the course for credit under the guidance of a faculty sponsor from the credit-granting department, who will serve as the instructor of record for the course.
A faculty sponsor will be responsible for evaluating individual student readiness for the experience; maintaining regular communication with both the student and external organization during the internship, in order to identify and address challenges as they arise; and evaluating student success at the end of the internship.
1. Internship opportunities are reserved for matriculated juniors and seniors, with the exception of freshmen and sophomores whose readiness is specifically demonstrated on the internship application. Students must also have a minimum GPA of 2.0. Academic departments have the option to require higher GPAs and/or to restrict enrollment based on class status.
2. Students at MCLA may earn a total of 15 credits for alternative learning credit, prior learning credit, and/or internships. In the rare event that a student is approved to receive 15 credits of prior learning credit and there are extenuating circumstances when an internship is required for their program of study or is deemed necessary, the Dean of Academic Affairs may grant an exception to the total 15 credit limit. This exception would only be allowed in very rare instances.
3. Programmatic exemptions to the 15 credit hour limit require approval of the governance process.
4. A minimum of forty-five (45) hours of on-site experience are required for each credit hour.
5. The internship must be a new learning experience. If the internship is within an organization or location where the student has previous experience, the application must demonstrate how the intern position differs from previous experience.
6. The credit-granting department may establish reasonable additional criteria for accepting students as interns, and also have the option of offering the internship on a pass/fail basis.
7. An internship application, completed in consultation with the faculty sponsor, will require the following information:
a. the educational and experiential objective of the internship.
b. the on-site work to be completed during the internship.
c. the number of hours of on-site work.
d. the number of credit requested and method of grading.
e. any information regarding prior experience relevant to the internship.
f. a plan for evaluating the internship experience.
8. The completed proposal must be approved by the student, faculty sponsor, Chairperson of the credit-granting department, student's academic advisor, and the Dean of Academic Affairs.
9. Each internship must contain a writing component, evaluation by the site director/supervisor, and a final evaluation by the faculty sponsor.