Internships give students an opportunity to acquire practical “hands-on” experience in a field or area that interests them. Internships differ from independent study in that an internship involves off-campus participation in the work of an agency, institution, or corporate body other than the University. The work is supervised and evaluated by a designated individual in the agency, institution, or corporate body providing the internship. This supervisor provides an evaluation of the student’s work to the Albany faculty member responsible for the final evaluation and assignment of the appropriate academic grade.
Internships are open only to qualified juniors and seniors who have an overall grade point average of 2.50 or higher. Students interested in correlating their academic study with practical experience are encouraged to explore the feasibility of participating in an internship.
Some majors, such as social welfare, require fieldwork as part of their major requirements, and these opportunities are open only to students who have been admitted in the major program. In other cases, many academic departments and schools offer internships involving experiences related to the academic focus of the unit. These courses include opportunities in various aspects of the performing arts (A ARH 490, A ART 490, A MUS 490, A THR 415), anthropology (A ANT 400), classics (A CLA 490), planning (A PLN 490), computing (I CSI 490), atmospheric science (A ATM 490), business (B BUS 497, 498) communication (A COM 390), sociology (A SOC 490), public policy (R PUB 498; R POS 338, 434), news writing for papers or radio or television stations (A JRL 400), archaeological fieldwork (A ANT 338), etc.
The University also offers a total of 15 credits for students participating in the following special, formalized internships: Senate Session Assistant Program (U UNI 391), Assembly Session Intern Program (U UNI 392), Operational and Applied Communication Theory (A COM 392, 393), and the Empire State Youth Theatre Institute (A CAS 390). These latter established internships take advantage of Albany’s location in the state’s capital. Albany is also affiliated with the Washington Center (see U UNI 393, WCLA Internship).
Through U UNI 390 (1–15 credits), students have obtained approval for full- or part-time internships in a very wide variety of areas. For these pursuits, it is assumed the student will secure the opportunity on his or her own, find appropriate faculty sponsorship, and then apply to the Interdisciplinary Studies Committee for approval of the desired credit.
The range of possible internship opportunities is too great to list here. The more common internships pursued by previous students through U UNI 390 have included work with: U.S. Congress, federal judiciary and numerous federal executive agencies, various state agencies (Lt. Governor’s Office, Attorney General, Correctional Services, Division of Criminal Justice, etc.), the New York Public Interest Research Group, the Civil Liberties Union, the Environmental Planning Lobby, Albany Medical Center, stock brokerage firms, law firms and media internships with local and national television stations and corporations. Further information and application forms for U UNI 390 may be obtained from the Office of Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, LC 30.
In addition to the credit-bearing internships, there are also many opportunities for noncredit internships, mostly during the summer, some of which pay the participants a stipend. Information on many of these programs and their application process is available through the Career Development Center.