An internship is an intensive, responsible work experience related to the student’s previous academic studies and career or general goals. It is an opportunity to gain practical experience in their major field of study and to apply knowledge gained in the classroom. It gives the student a chance to find out if a particular field is right for them. It is also a way to earn credits outside of the classroom. Lastly, it is an excellent resume builder and provides an opportunity for students to make useful contacts in their professional field.
Internships should be unique experiences to the students. As such, if a student has worked at a site previously, it needs to be demonstrated that the work to be completed for the internship will be significantly different from the work done in the past.
A student is eligible for an internship when they have achieved sophomore standing or have completed two semesters at Wilmington College. A student must be in good academic standing at the time the internship is approved.
Between one and six credits can be earned through an internship. A student may include up to 12 internship credits in their Wilmington degree program. Most internships last for one semester. A student may work for shorter periods of time, such as school vacations. Internships are part-time during the academic year, and may be full or part-time during breaks. The majority of the work must be completed during the semester in which the credit is given. For each academic credit earned the student must work 42 contact hours. The contact hours required are as follows:
As the site supervisor, you will be responsible for completing a mid-term and end of term evaluation for the student. It is important that these are submitted on time as late evaluations can impact a student’s grade. The evaluation forms are generally brief and area combination of ranking scales in various categories with an opportunity for narrative feedback as well.
As a supervisor, providing feedback is critical to the student’s learning throughout the internship. Please be honest and constructive in your feedback, and communicate this regularly with students.
Interns may work in a variety of settings as long as the experience is unique to the student, primarily educational in nature, meet the criteria of the student’s particular academic program (as determined by a faculty sponsor’s approval of the student’s proposed contract), and supervised by a knowledgeable professional in the field.
Qualified supervisors should have knowledge and expertise in the field of the internship as well as experience supervising others. It is important that supervisors are able to fairly and objectively evaluate student work and provide constructive feedback. In accordance with College policy, students are not permitted to be supervised by immediate family members.
The site supervisor should communicate clearly and regularly to the student so they understand what is expected of them during the internship. They should know what hours they are to work and what tasks they will perform. The site supervisor should take time to explain the organizational climate and to point out how the employees dress and interact with one another. The supervisor should encourage the student to do their best to “fit in” and provide them tips on how to do this. This may be a first venture into the professional world for many students, so your guidance is essential.
The student is there to learn and the supervisor should understand that they will make mistakes and that they should learn from them. Encourage the student to be open to all new experiences.
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