Summer or semester-long internships can be a great way to learn outside the classroom and explore possible career interests. You might also be able to earn academic credits that count toward your degree.
To qualify for academic credit, the internship must include a project that incorporates hands-on experiences with:
- An analytic or research component
- A final product
These added features must be supervised by a W&M professor (see below), who will assign a grade.
The amount of credit you earn varies depending on the amount of academic work involved. Normally 3 credits are awarded. Up to 6 credits from internships can count toward your undergraduate degree.
How to Get Started
You will be responsible for working out an internship agreement with your internship supervisor and a W&M professor.
- Choose a summer or semester-long internship. You can consult the Office of Career Development and Professional Engagement for help. The Charles Center administers some summer academic internships and can help with funding if you find a suitable unpaid internship.
- Once your internship is lined up, discuss research possibilities with your internship supervisor. Explain that you also want to earn academic credit.
- Find a W&M professor, propose the internship for academic credit, and ask the professor to supervise your work.
- Once your W&M professor and internship supervisor agree on the outline of your project, complete the appropriate Internship for Academic Credit form.
- Register for the appropriate internship course. Your W&M professor or the Office of Undergraduate Academic Affairs can help you complete this registration.
- Work with your W&M professor throughout the internship to further develop your project.
- Once your internship is completed, write an academic paper about your project and submit the paper to your supervising W&M professor for a final grade.
If your internship will take you away from your regular academic work for a semester or more, notify the Office of the Dean of Students before beginning the internship.
If you’re an international student and will be paid for your internship work, contact the Office of International Students, Scholars, & Programs concerning F-1 and J-1 visa requirements.