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Internships at ITU

PURPOSE

Hands-on experience and skill development is a key component of ITU’s pedagogy. We recognize how important internships are in transferring course theory, concepts, and skills from a graduate program to a career in the student’s field of study. For this reason, we are committed to linking the classroom with relevant industry experience.

ITU is proud to offer a strong internship program that is required for all students in graduate degree programs. Internships are managed through enrollment in INT 593 (Formerly named GRN 900), a course that may be taken for a maximum of ten credits over the course of a program. ITU reviews each internship request on an individual basis to ensure that it is consistent with the student’s coursework and academic policies. For students who attend ITU on an F-1 student visa, the internship request must also meet the standards found in the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations – 8 CFR § 214.2(f)(10)(i).

ITU’s internship eligibility requirements, academic components and expectations, procedures and due dates, and conditions are presented below.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS

The following requirements apply to all students who wish to participate in ITU’s internship program:

  • Admission/Enrollment – Students must be admitted to one of ITU’s graduate programs and enrolled in a full course load of nine credits per trimester. (Note: See exception below for Trimester Break or Last Term of Study).
  • INT 593 series enrollment – Students must enroll in a INT 593 series course in order to have an internship. This course may be part of the student’s course load mentioned above. Internships will not be approved with any other course at ITU, including independent study or special study courses. To continue an existing internship, students must enroll in another INT 593 series course and follow the procedures listed here for each new trimester.
  • Tuition/Fees – Students will not receive approval for an internship until all past and current tuition and fees have been paid in full. Click here for information about paying tuition and fees.
  • GPA – Students must maintain a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.0 and passing grades in INT 593 to begin or renew a full-time internship.
  • Internship relevance – Students must show that the requested internship is relevant to their field of study and that the internship provider has extended a formal offer that is consistent with the procedure below.
  • Internship providers – Students may not have more than one internship provider at a time.

ACADEMIC COMPONENTS AND EXPECTATIONS

As stated above, all internships at ITU require enrollment in INT 593. This academic class is taken for one credit with part-time internships (up to 20 hours per week) or three credits with full-time internships (21 to 40 hours per week). In order to earn a passing grade, students will submit specific assignments to a faculty member. All assignments will be submitted by the student with clear identification of their name, university ID number, the graduate program, the internship title, the internship provider’s name, and the internship supervisor’s name. Assignments may include:

  • Description of internship – A presentation of the unique duties and responsibilities the student will perform during the internship. (Note: The internship cannot be a substitution for a paid staff position or a vacant position at the internship provider’s organization).
  • Mid-term internship report – An initial report by the student on his/her performance and progress in the internship, as well as specific information about the skills and knowledge being acquired relevant to the student’s field of study. (Note: Such reports should first be cleared by the internship provider to observe appropriate confidentiality and intellectual property constraints).
  • Professional Development/Networking Event + Presentation – A professional development event where students are exposed to professionals and innovative ideas in their career field. A short written narrative with corresponding presentation discussing the event and its significance. (Note: Events may be on or off campus. All off-campus events must be approved by the faculty advisor)
  • Final internship report – A comprehensive report on the topics covered in the mid-term report and supplemented by the student’s evaluation of the relevance of the internship to the student’s academic program, career goals, and potential areas for future study and research beyond the internship.
  • Final evaluation form – Submitted directly to the faculty member by the internship provider during the last two weeks of the trimester with the signatures of the internship supervisor and an HR representative of the organization providing the internship.

Click here to view Internship Course Descriptions.

CONDITIONS FOR ALL ITU STUDENTS

To ensure compliance with ITU’s policies, the following conditions apply to all students attending ITU:

  • First term internships – Internships for the first trimester of study with ITU will be limited to a part-time internship. An exception will be allowed for students who can demonstrate a prior successful internship or training experience related to a degree they earned in the U.S. Evidence of such an experience may include an academic transcript showing a passing grade in an internship course, a report from the institution’s internship program showing satisfactory performance in cases where academic credit was not involved, or a letter of recommendation from an employer or other evidence that the student was authorized to work for during a period of Optional Practical Training.
  • Integrating Academic & Internship Learning (CFL 591) – Students must enroll in and pass an Integrating Academic & Internship Learning (CFL 591) class before or during the trimester of their first internship with ITU. The class will prepare students for the structure and expectations of ITU’s internship program, for success in the graduate program related to their internship, and for identifying a project or theme in their internship that they will present on at the end of their graduate program. (Note: This condition applies to any student, new or continuing, who has not had an internship before at ITU.)
  • Continuous enrollment/attendance – If a student drops below full-time enrollment (Note: See exception below for Trimester Break), or the internship provider otherwise ends the agreement, the student will not be permitted to continue with the internship.
  • Start/End dates – As mentioned above, internships are approved only in conjunction with enrollment in INT 593. For this reason, internships cannot begin sooner than the trimester start date and must end by the trimester end date. No part of the internship may take place during break periods between trimesters.
  • Academic performance requirements (program) – As noted above, students must maintain an appropriate GPA in their program at ITU to remain eligible for an internship. Once official grades have been posted for the prior trimester, any student who holds a cumulative GPA below 2.0 will lose all internship eligibility (i.e., both full-time and part-time), including eligibility for the trimester in progress. A student who holds a cumulative GPA between 2.0 and 3.0 will be limited to a part-time internship for the trimester in progress (note: this may require the student to enroll in other courses to maintain full-time status). These limits will remain until grades for the next term have been posted. At that time, if that student’s cumulative GPA increases to 3.0 or higher, the student will be eligible to request a full-time internship within posted deadlines. If that student’s GPA for the most recent term is 3.0 or higher and the cumulative GPA remains below 3.0, the student will remain eligible for a part-time internship. If that student’s GPA for the most recent term is below 3.0, the student will lose all internship eligibility, including for the trimester in progress (note: coursework taken at another institution will not be considered in determining eligibility for an internship in an ITU program).
  • Academic performance requirements (INT 593) – A student who receives a grade of “NP” (no pass) in INT 593 will be reduced to part-time internship. If a second grade of “NP” (no pass) is received in INT 593, the internship will be cancelled and the student will be ineligible for future internships at ITU.
  • Academic performance requirements (other)Effective Fall 2016 – A student must pass CFL 591 by the end of the term in which they complete their first internship or that student will lose all internship eligibility for the next term. After that next term, internship eligibility will be restored only if a passing grade has been earned in CFL 591 by that time. Also, students who are required to take the university’s Student Success Program must satisfactorily complete that program within their first two trimesters to retain internship eligibility.
  • Maximum internship credits – Students are limited to ten total credits for INT 593. For each part-time internship (up to 20 hours per week), one credit of INT 593 will be used. For each full-time internship (21 to 40 hours per week), three credits of INT 593 will be used. This limit applies to both new and continuing students. A change in programs or interruption of studies will not reset this limit. (Note: Students who began their studies before Fall 2015 and have already reached this limit by the start of that term will be allowed to take an additional three credits of INT 593 to be used for either a full-time internship for one trimester or a part-time internship for three trimesters. These additional three credits may not be used towards graduation requirements.)
  • Change of internship provider – ITU recognizes that unforeseen circumstances may require the change of an internship provider. To allow completion of INT 593, students will be allowed to change their internship provider once per trimester. However, after a second internship request has been submitted in the same trimester, no further changes will be permitted. Also, students may not change an internship provider after Friday (6:00 PM) of the eighth week of the trimester. If an internship ends after the eighth week, the grade in INT 593 will be based on performance up to that point.

ADDITIONAL CONDITIONS FOR STUDENTS ATTENDING ITU ON AN F-1 STUDENT VISA

To ensure compliance with ITU’s policies and federal regulations, the following conditions apply to all students attending ITU on an F-1 student visa:

  • Maintaining visa status – If a student violates his/her status, the student’s I-20 will be terminated, which will also immediately end the student’s internship.
  • Eligibility for post-graduate work authorization under Optional Practical Training (OPT) – An F-1 student who receives 12 or more months of full-time CPT is ineligible for post-graduate work authorization under Optional Practical Training (OPT). This includes any full-time CPT a student took at the same degree level at another school before transferring to ITU. However, any part-time CPT an F-1 student receives is not counted towards this total and will not affect the student’s eligibility for post-graduate OPT.
  • Trimester Break – F-1 students are allowed one vacation term, also known as a “trimester break”, after completing a full academic year of study. At ITU, this is satisfied when a student has completed three consecutive trimesters of full-time enrollment. If a student wishes to take a vacation term after this point, they may reduce their enrollment to part-time or take no classes during that trimester. However, if the student wishes to begin or renew an internship during that term, they must enroll in INT 593.
  • Last Term of Study – An F-1 student who is completing a degree program in the same term that an internship is requested is only required to take the number of classes needed to complete the degree. However, all other classes taken in that term must be on-campus, as required by F-1 student visa regulations.
  • Exception for ITU student employees – Students employed by ITU in a position relevant to their academic program do not require an internship/CPT, as they will gain experience in that role. These students will instead take another academic class to maintain full-time enrollment. However, F-1 students who seek to work on-campus more than the 20-hours per week during the trimester must request a full-time internship, enroll in INT 593 for three credits, and obtain CPT authorization as required by their visa status.
  • Volunteering, observation, and unpaid work – ITU will not allow an F-1 student to engage in volunteer or unpaid work for an internship provider outside of INT 593. Such action by a student before or after approved internship dates may result in an immediate loss of the internship and CPT authorization, as well as eligibility for any future internship at ITU. Such action might also be treated as a violation of the student’s F-1 visa status, resulting in termination in SEVIS for “illegal employment”.

RELATED LINKS

QUESTIONS

For questions about ITU’s internship program, please see our Frequently Asked Questions or contact the International Student Office through ITU’s ticketing system.

Last modified: December 15, 2016