Frequently Asked Questions
What is an internship?
An internship is a chance to try out a prospective career and to gain professional work experience. This is an opportunity to see if your interests match your experience. You can work with professionals and gain day to day knowledge of your field.
Where do I find information about specific internships?
Start with a discussion about your internship interests with your faculty advisor, other faculty in your major department or a career counselor. You can visit the Mills College Career Services Office webpages to review online internship lists. If you are interested in a particular organization, visit their website directly, and/or you may want to see if a Mills alumna is affiliated with the organization and conduct an information interview with her.
What if I am not a junior or senior?
If you are not a junior or senior you can still get an internship. You will not be able to receive credit for that internship, but it will be good experience for future employment.
Are there distinctions between internships besides major field?
There are different types of internships ranging from paid to unpaid as well as summer internships.
Internship Deadlines For Academic Credit
To ensure that you meet all required deadlines to receive academic credit for your internship, begin by downloading and reviewing our Internship Guidelines for Academic Credit document.
Schedule appointments with the Career Services Office and with your academic advisor to discuss your internship well ahead of time, preferably during the semester preceding your internship.
Complete both the Internship Learning Contract and the Petition for Academic Internship Credit form and obtain all required signatures
Submit the completed internship contract and petition forms directly to the M Center. Both forms must be submitted no later than the day before the last day to add classes for that semester.
Please note: If planning a summer internship for credit to be applied to your fall record, check with the Career Services Office for the exact deadline (usually late April or early May).
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Recommended Internship Planning Steps
- Think about your career goals. An internship is a chance to try out a prospective career, and gain professional work experience. If you are undecided about your future career direction, discuss this with a Mills career counselor and your faculty advisor.
- Research internship opportunities by taking advantages of the resources offered in the Career Services Office, located in Sage Hall, Room 118. Search for additional lisitings using the online resources listed on the Career Service's internship webpage. Make a list, by name of the organization, of all the internships that interest you.
- Make an individual appointment with a counselor in the Career Services Office, and bring your list with you. Develop a plan for contacting all prospective internship employers.
- Attend a resume workshop and take a look at the Career Planning webpage to craft your professional resume, cover letter, and references.
- Follow each employer's internship application procedures exactly as requested. Most of the time you will be asked to send a resume and cover letter, followed by a screening process and an interview.
- Prepare for your interviews. Attend an interviewing workshop with Career Services or make an appointment for a mock interview.
- Decide which internship best meets your needs. Download the Internship Learning Contract and the Petition for Academic Credit form if you are seeking academic credit for your internship.
- Complete the top portion of the Petition for Academic Credit. Make an appointment with your faculty advisor. Discuss your internship plans and obtain the necessary signatures.
- File your Internship Learning Contract and Petition for Academic Credit (completed and with all signatures) directly with the M Center by the deadline.
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Mills Requirements for Credit Internships
- Juniors and seniors are eligible.
- Students must have a cumulative Mills GPA of 2.0 or higher.
- Transfer students must have completed one semester at Mills.
- Academic internships must be conducted through off-campus organizations outside of Mills College.
- Academic internships must be approved in advance by a faculty supervisor, your faculty advisor, and the Academic Standing Committee. Approval is not granted retroactively.
- Academic internships are graded pass/no pass only and must be contracted for one full unit of academic credit.
- Each student may receive credit for two internships. It is permissible to receive both units of credit in the same organization if:
- The duties and responsibilities performed in the internship are substantially different; and
- A different person supervises each internship.
- Students receive one unit of academic credit and must work a minimum of ten hours per week for fourteen to sixteen weeks. Note: Summer interns must work a minimum of 160 hours.
- Interns must attend required internship meetings at the Career Services Office and complete a final evaluation of their internship experience to receive credit.
- A course overload (more than 5 course credits) during the internship semester is not permitted.
- The content of an academic internship must:
- Be a professional experience; that is, work one would assign to an entry level college graduate (clerical duties are not considered professional and may never comprise the majority of a student's internship assignment.)
- Work experience must provide students with a substantial body of specific information and/or identifiable technical or professional skills.
- A faculty supervisor must provide on-going monitoring of the internship. Faculty may select assignments which provide the best academic complement to the internship experience. This could include: reading assignments, a written description and critical assessment of the internship, keeping a written journal, regular meetings, and other exercises.
- Students are required to submit a written summary report of their internship experience to their faculty internship supervisor no later than the last day of instruction. Summer interns must submit by the first day of instruction the following fall. The paper should be a minimum of five pages.
- It is the student's responsibility to see her faculty internship supervisor to keep the faculty member advised of her progress.