Internships are a powerful and effective way for students to gain real-world work experience. The College's Internship Program provides experiential learning as a complementary approach to a student's education. With a goal of preparing students, the College's internship program is focused on providing quality industry internship opportunities that allow students to spend time within a real-world job experience prior to graduation.
The Internship Program is an alliance between the student, employer, and the College. For this alliance to function, it is important that each partner understands their roles and responsibilities.
Internship Vs Job
First and foremost, an internship is not the same as a job. In general, it requires oversight and mentoring from a designated supervisor within the company who can appropriately train and consistently provide feedback to students. Employers should evaluate whether hosting an internship is feasible and, most importantly, if the experience will help students develop and practice critical employability and industry specific skills. A brief comparison can be found here: Internship vs Job
Internships can be one of the most rewarding experiences as a student. To make the most of the internship, students should understand their responsibilities and be prepared to commit their time and energy towards its success.
- Student is currently enrolled as a degree-seeking student with 12 credit hours completed.
- Student has a minimum of 2.0 grade point average and be in good academic standing.
- Student must acknowledge their understanding of work-based learning concepts, including, but not limited to, work-based learning opportunity rules, procedures, policies, and professional expectations per the Internship Agreement.
Students should contact their academic advisor or department to confirm eligibility
Working Hours & Academic Credit
Required Working Hours to Receive Academic Credit
Academic credit can only be awarded by CFK. The number of credits earned is based on the number of hours worked in accordance with the table listed below:
|Total Work Hours||Credit Hours Earned|
|75 Hours||1 Credit|
|150 Hours||2 Credits|
|225 Hours||3 Credits|
|300 Hours||4 Credits|
Internships should last the full semester – typically 15 weeks in Fall (Aug-Dec) or Spring (Jan-May) and 8 weeks in the Summer (June-Sept)
Ideally, work schedules should accommodate student’s availability based on other class dates/times and be developed after an intern is identified.
Students should also be aware of their degree requirements and whether an internship is required for their specific degree. An overview of these programs can be found here: Internship program degree breakdown
Internship Instructor Role and Grading
During the internship, an instructor will help guide the learning experience. They will evaluate assignments and will issue the grade earned. Grades are issued when all requirements are met, and assignments have been reviewed and graded for accuracy and quality. A student’s academic advisor or department can help in identifying a faculty member to serve as the instructor.
Identifying an Internship
Identify and Apply to an Internship Site
An Internship Site can be identified by faculty, the student, or Student Success Serivces. Keep in mind that new sites must go through a CFK approval process that may take a few weeks, so plan applications accordingly. Utilize these resources to assist in your search.
- Current CFK approved Sites: LINK TO LIST
- Attend career fairs and networking events.
- Use LinkedIn to build your network and foster connections with business professionals and colleagues.
- Conduct informational interviews with professionals in your field of interest.
- Search for positions on job boards.
To qualify and maintain proper classification as an internship host site, an employer must, at a minimum:
- Successfully been in full-time business for at least one year and be able to provide their federal tax identification number.
- Offer continuous hands-on experience as the primary function of the intern and training specific to the intern’s career goals and intended professional role.
- Provide the intern with a qualified supervisor on-site who can guide the student’s work.
- Allow representatives from CFK the opportunity to visit and/or observe at any time (as may be needed) to validate the internship and/or intern’s performance.
- Fully comply with the Department of Labor Fair Labor Standards act regarding intern pay. Paid interns should be compensated no less than minimum wage and in a pay range comparable with entry level positions within that job.
- Always ensure the intern’s safety and provide training and support toward safe work environments. Each student should be fully trained on, at a minimum, safety rules, regulations, and practices relevant to the job they will be performing and the employer’s procedures for reporting injury, harassment, or discrimination.
Develop and Submit an Internship Position
A site visit must be performed before final approval and start of an internship opportunity. The site visit can be conducted in person or virtual and should assess the physical space where the student will work for appropriate safety, health, and professional standards.
Recruiting and onboarding an Intern
Upon approval of the internship opportunity, it is recommended that the opportunity be posted to Handshake or other electronic job posting boards for students to apply. Visit Handshake (Employer Registration form) for steps to create an employer account on Handshake
Once a student has been identified as a potential match, an interview is encouraged to provide appropriate employability skill development around interview skills.
If a student matches with a site, on-boarding of a student should include, at a minimum:
- Training on safety rules, regulations, and practices relevant to the job they will be performing.
- The employer’s procedures for reporting injury, harassment, or discrimination.
- Collection of emergency contact information, including name, phone, email, and relationship to student.