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The Office of Career Development assists matriculated graduate and undergraduate students in obtaining internships relevant to careers in public administration, public policy, political science, and international affairs.

Why Intern? Internships provide students a unique opportunity to explore your options and “try on” different jobs and organizations that are of interest to you. Additional benefits that you can gain from internships include learning valuable transferable skills from the field, gaining valuable contacts, exposure to different elements of the field and more.

Are There Paid Internships? That depends on the employers and their employment requirements. Graduate students are commonly paid experiences with an average of about $15.45 per hour; however, it is not uncommon for students to take an unpaid internship if the experience and network are valuable to their career development. Undergraduate internships are typically unpaid, but from time-to-time students may find a paid experience.

How Do I Find an Internship that is Right for Me? The Office of Career Development will help guide you to a position that fulfills both academic and career requirements. To schedule an appointment during the academic year, log onto your Handshake account and request an appointment with our director Yalitza M. Negron. If you are looking to schedule an appointment during the summer, please email or call 518-442-5253 to schedule a time. Lastly, you are welcome to stop by the office to schedule an appointment in-person. The office is located in Milne Hall 105. No drop in appointments will be taken at any time.

What kind of internships can I do? One of the best parts about being in the public administration and international affairs field is that the opportunities for internships are wide and varied, which provides students with rich opportunities to gain valuable experience. Students can intern with a state agency, a representative’s office, non-profit, non-governmental organization, municipal office, private agency and more. Additionally, you are not limited to completing an internship only in the Capital Region. Students are encouraged to take advantage of opportunities in New York City, Washington D.C., or even internationally.

Where can I find internships? Students apply for internships through a number of different websites including the New New York Leaders website,,,, and more. Students can also have the opportunity to intern with one of our centers and institutes within the university including the National Center for Security & Preparedness, The Center for Women in Government and Civil Society, the Center for International Development and more. To view these and other centers, please click here

How long are internship terms? Students can complete an internship during any of three terms fall (August- December 31), spring (January- May) and summer (May-August). Students will commonly leverage the breaks between classes to complete more hours at their placement site. Please note that the start and end date of a placement is determined by the employer and student. Once a student has secured a placement and it has been approved by the career office, students can begin counting hours toward that specific term.

What do I do once I find an internship placement? All internships are approved and tracked through our web based portal named Handshake. Handshake provides students the opportunity to apply for internships, register for workshops, on-campus interviews, career fairs and more. Once a student is extended an offer and accepts their placement, It is imperative that students contact the director of our career office to inform them that they have secured a placement so they can begin the documentation and approval process right away. Failure to provide appropriate documentation and approval prior to the start of an internship may result in that internship not counting towards graduation requirements. Below you will find a PDF guide to submitting an new experience on Handshake.
Handshake: How-to Submit a New Experience Guide

What forms do I need to request and approve my internship placement with the career office? ? In order for a student’s internship to be approved by the career office, PRIOR to starting their placement, the student must:

  • Step 1:  Submit a “New Experience” on Handshake
  • Step 2:  Receive digital approval from their supervisor on Handshake
After starting their placement, a student must:
  • Step 3:  Upload a signed copy of their students and supervisor form as a new attachment to their “experience” on the system within two weeks after starting their placement

What forms do I need to complete my internship? At the conclusion of student’s internship in a given term (fall, spring, and summer), students must complete the following by the specific due date provided in their program’s career handbook:

  • Step 1: Collect supervisor and student signature on completed hour logs and upload and attach to experience on Handshake
  • Step 2: Complete the Student Final Performance Form- A notification will be sent to the student’s e-mail account from Handshake
  • Step 3: Supervisor submit their Final Performance Form- A notification will be sent to the supervisor’s e-mail from Handshake and an e-mail from the office.
All three steps must be completed in order for the hours that have been completed during a specific term to count.
For more information on the forms needed for internships, please visit our Forms page.

Track your volunteer hours!  This will allow students to keep track of the hours they spend each semester serving their community. Volunteering is an excellent résumé builder, a great way to connect with your community, and an important networking tool. Completing and submitting a service log to the Career Office each semester will:

  • allow you to list hard data on your résumé
  • allow Rockefeller College to track the volunteerism of its students
  • give Rockefeller a list of contacts for potential internships/volunteer opportunities

Please submit your Volunteer Hour Logs to the career office on Milne 105.