To gain practical experience, test career possibilities, network, and/or to increase their fluency in a second language and culture, PORTfolio students engage in an off-campus learning experience during their junior or senior year. Students may choose to study abroad, participate in a student-faculty research project, participate in service learning, or intern in a particular career field with a local organization or business.

What is an Internship?

An internship is learning by doing. By integrating classroom theory (knowledge) into the world of work, students acquire first-hand experience (know-how) in a work environment related to their career interests.

An internship involves active participation in the functioning of a business, governmental organization, non-profit organization, etc., for which the student receives academic credit. It may be either a semester long (12 semester hours of credit) experience or 100 hours of internship experience for 3 semester hours credit. Credits gained through a PORTfolio internship count towards meeting graduation requirements.

A PORTfolio academic internship allows students to:

  • Expand their awareness of the world beyond the classroom;
  • Explore career ideas in professional settings;
  • Experience the connection between their liberal arts education and the world through its application at a work site;
  • Gain valuable career-related experience;
  • Improve their self-confidence, develop new skills and work habits essential for a responsible and productive professional; and
  • Network with future employers.

Student Responsibilities

As a participant in the PORTfolio internship program, the student will:

  • Prepare an internship contract with their PORTfolio advisor which defines their learning objectives for the experience;
  • Perform internship responsibilities in a professional manner;
  • Maintain a daily journal that documents their internship experience;
  • Complete the academic work requirements of the internship; and
  • Submit a self-evaluation about the internship which integrates academic and career interests.

Faculty Responsibilities

The PORTfolio internship coordinator will:

  • Assist students with developing the academic component of the internship by outlining academic work to be completed;
  • Contact the intern during the internship to strengthen the link between academic and work components of the internship experience; and
  • Evaluate the internship experience and assign a grade.

PORTfolio Partner's Responsibilities

As an internship sponsor, the PORTfolio Partner will:

  • Provide an internship job description to the PORTfolio Program;
  • Designate an internship supervisor at the work site;
  • Orient the intern to the organization and his or her work assignment;
  • Challenge the intern with work assignments of a professional nature; and
  • Complete an intern evaluation form at the end of the internship.

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