What is an Internship?

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 workplace setting (across in-person, remote, or hybrid modalities). Internships provide students the opportunity to gain valuable applied experience, develop social capital, explore career fields, and make connections in professional fields. In addition, internships serve as a significant recruiting mechanism for employers, providing them with the opportunity to guide and evaluate potential candidates.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) believes that an internship should include:  

  • A learning experience with a real-world opportunity to apply the knowledge gained in the classroom. It must not be simply to advance the operations of the employer or replace the work that a regular employee would routinely perform. 

  • Learned skills and knowledge that are transferable to other employment settings. 

  • A defined beginning and end that is mutually agreed upon and consistent with institutional sponsor guidelines and schedules. 

  • A position description with clear responsibilities and required/desired qualifications. 

  • Clearly defined learning objectives/goals supportive of the student’s academic program goals and institutional requirements. 

  • Direct supervision by a professional(s) with relevant expertise and educational and/or professional experience who provides productive feedback, guidance, and the resources and equipment necessary to successfully complete the assignment. 

Schedule an appointment with an Internship Specialist to get started with your internship search:

Schedule an Appointment

Any questions? Contact the Florida Atlantic Experiential Learning & Internships team at intern@fau.edu or 561-297-3533.