By Sarah Diaz, Director of the Professional Development Center
According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, an internship is a form of experiential learning that integrates knowledge and theory learned in the classroom with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. Internships give students the opportunity to gain valuable applied experience and make connections in professional fields they are considering for career paths; and give employers the opportunity to guide and evaluate talent.
The United States’ stance on internships recommends internships include the following:
- The internship, even though it includes actual operation of the employer’s facilities, is similar to training that would be given in a vocational school.
- The internship experience is for the benefit of the student.
- The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under the close observation of a regular employee.
- The employer provides the training and derives no immediate advantage from the activities of the intern. Occasionally, the operations may actually be impeded.
- The intern is not necessarily entitled to a job at the conclusion of the internship.