• Career Development Center

  • Faculty Internship Guide

    NOTE: This section is a special addendum to the Hamline University Internship Guide. Please read that section first for a thorough understanding of the Internship Program Policies and Procedures.  

    The Role of the Faculty Supervisor

    The Faculty Supervisor is a Hamline professor who oversees the academic components of the internship experience. This means helping students develop learning goals, structuring academic reflection for the internship, and monitoring the student’s growth and learning. Faculty are encouraged to monitor the student’s progress at the internship site by communicating with the site supervisor and reviewing copies of the Two-Week Review, the Midterm and the Final Evaluation forms. The faculty supervisor may also schedule a visit to the internship site to meet with the student and his/her site supervisor to discuss the internship experience and observe his/her work. Faculty are expected to provide students with guidance and feedback on navigating the internship experience when needed, and to assign a final grade for the internship at the end of the term.

    The LEAP Learning Agreement

    Students do not earn academic credit simply by working at their internship site. Rather, credit is earned based on the learning and growth that students demonstrate as a result of their experience. The LEAP Learning Agreement serves as a tool through which students and faculty supervisors can structure a learning and assessment plan tailored to the individual student’s experience and learning style.

    Since internships merit the LEAP credit at Hamline, students and faculty must use the LEAP Learning Outcomes as a guiding framework for creating these plans. Students should work collaboratively with their faculty supervisor to develop specific goals designed to meet the learning objectives of the LEAP Program at Hamline. These learning objectives are:

    1. Connect the LEAP experience to relevant academic knowledge
    2. Adapt and apply skills, abilities, theories or methodologies gained in one situation to the LEAP experience
    3. Demonstrate a developing sense of self as a learner, building on prior experiences to respond to new and changing contexts
    4. Articulate the connection between LEAP work and Hamline’s mission, vision and values

    As you are working with students to create their learning plan, keep in mind the importance of developing learning goals that are specific, measurable and achievable. At the end of the internship experience, students should be able to provide you with artifacts of their learning that you can use in your grading, and which can be collected by the University for assessment purposes. Artifacts may come in a variety of forms, such as reflective journals or papers, a portfolio of work completed at the internship site, research papers on topics related to the internship experience, etc.

    See the grading and assessment section for more information on evaluation at the end of the internship experience.

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    Best Practices for Supporting Student Interns

    As an individualized learning experience, students and faculty have the academic freedom to design an learning plan for the internship that best meets their learning/teaching styles. However, there are a few best-practices that faculty should follow to facilitate student learning and growth before, during and after the internship experience.

    Pre-Internship Advising 

    • Help students consider the kind of internship that makes the most sense for them, based on their academic and career interests.
    • Help students plan the best timing for an internship based on their academic plans.
    • When appropriate, provide suggestions and resources for the internship search.
    • Refer students to the Career Development Center for specialized assistance with the internship search and internship advising.

    During the Internship Process

    • Meet with students early in their internship experience to discuss their learning goals and complete the LEAP Learning Agreement. Work together to develop a clear plan for how you will evaluate the students and assign them with a grade at the end of the internship.
    • Plan to communicate regularly with your student advisee through in-person meetings, email and/or phone communications.
    • Regularly re-visit the student’s learning plan with him/her and make changes as needed.
    • Communicate with the student’s site supervisor – arrange at least two phone conversations at the beginning and end of the internship, and consider conducting a site visit mid-way through the internship.
    • Monitor the feedback that the student is getting from his/her internship site through the two-week, midterm and final evaluations (copies will be sent to you from the Career Development Center). Engage students in reflection on their feedback.

    After the Internship  

    • Help students reflect on their experience as a whole – what did they learn? How did it change them personally and professionally?
    • Discuss with students what their next steps will be. Will they pursue other internships, either in the same field or a different field? What additional coursework might they pursue to further their professional development? How does the internship impact their career and/or graduate school plans?
    • Refer students to the Career Development Center to further reflect on these topics and for assistance incorporating the internship into their resume.

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    Structuring Student Reflection

    Reflection is a critical component of the internship experience. Reflection is where connections between academia and the professional world are made, and where students deepen their understanding of the world of work and of themselves as developing professionals. Reflection also provides an avenue through which you can assess student learning.

    In their publication “A Practitioner’s Guide to Reflection in Service-Learning” (1996) Eyler Giles and Schmiede outline the “Five C’s” as a framework of best-practice for reflection. Reflection should be:

    • Continuous in time frame;
    • Connected to the “big picture” information provided by academic pursuits;
    • Challenging to assumptions and complacency;
    • Contextualized in terms of design and setting; and
    • Creative in terms of development and delivery.

    David Kolb’s Experiential Learning Cycle provides a graphical representation of the reflection process and boils it down to three simple questions – What? So What? Now What?  

    Experiential Learning Cicle Diagram

    Eyler, Janet, and D.E. Giles. A Practitioners Guide to Reflection in Service-Learning. Nashville: Vanderbilt University, 1996.

    Reflection can be both informal and formal. You can engage students in reflection through regular conversation about their internship, as well as through formal assignments.

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    Sample Reflection Questions

    (adapted from the University of Minnesota’s Community Service-Learning Center: http://www.servicelearning.umn.edu/info/reflection.html#Sample

    • What is your role at the internship site?
    • What were your initial expectations? Have these expectations changed? How? Why?
    • What about your internship has been an eye-opening experience?
    • How do you motivate yourself to go to your internship site when you don't feel like it?
    • What specific skills have you used at your internship?
    • Describe a person you've encountered at the internship who made a strong impression on you, positive or negative.
    • Do you see benefits of doing the work that is done at your internship? Why or why not?
    • Has your view of the population with whom you have been working changed? How?
    • How has the environment and social conditions affected the people at your site?
    • What institutional structures are in place at your site or in the community? How do they affect the people you work with?
    • Has the experience affected your worldview? How?
    • Have your career options been expanded by your internship experience?
    • Why does the organization you are working for exist?
    • Did anything about your internship surprise you? If so, what?
    • What did you do that seemed to be effective or ineffective at the internship?
    • How does your understanding of the organization or the profession change as a result of your participation in this project?
    • How can you continue your involvement with this organization or in this field?
    • How can you educate others or raise awareness about the issues on which you have been working?
    • What are the most difficult or satisfying parts of your work? Why?
    • Talk about any disappointments or successes of your internship. What did you learn from it?
    • During your internship experience, have you dealt with being an "outsider" at your site? How does being an "outsider" differ from being an "insider"?
    • How are your values expressed through your internship?
    • What sorts of things make you feel uncomfortable when you are working at the internship? Why?
    • Complete this sentence: “Because of my internship, I am....”

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    Ideas for Reflective Assignments

    (From Kathryn Hanna, Ph.D., faculty at the University of Minnesota (and Hamline alumna, ‘69)). These assignments can be built into student learning plan, or they can be complimentary assignments that you require to enhance the student’s learning and provide artifacts for your assessment at the end of the internship experience.

    Reflection on the Discipline/Professional Exploration  

    • Glossary of Terms: Develop a glossary of terms encountered at the internship. Provide definitions, sources, etc.
    • Paper Discussing Future Trends: Write a paper discussing future trends in the field. Provide an emphasis on changes occurring in the profession. Cite professionals at the internship site, journals, etc.
    • Investigation of a Professional Organization: Identify a professional organization relevant to the internship and write a summary paper that includes:     
      • Mission of the organization
      • Benefits to membership
      • Ways to become involved in the organization as a student or new professional
      • Interview with a local member of the organization
    • Related Careers Paper: Research a career related to the internship position; discuss parameters (e.g. salary, education required, promotion prospects, etc.), future trends, and assess fit.

    Reflection on the Organization/Position

    • History/Mission Paper: Write a paper that explores the history and mission of the organization. Require interviews of staff members at the organization as part of the research. Topics to include:
      • Mission of the organization
      • Impact of the organization
      • History
      • How has the organization changed over time?
      • Basic management structure of the organization
      • Funding of the organization
      • How does the intern’s work fit into the organization’s mission, etc.?
    • Ethical Dilemma Paper: Write a paper that explores a common ethical dilemma that professionals in the field may encounter. Identify ethical standards for the field and discuss potential solutions.
    • Monthly Interim Reports/Monthly Executive Summaries: Write regular reflective papers to discuss responsibilities and challenges, progress on learning objectives, communication with site supervisor, likes/dislikes, mistakes/achievements, etc.
    • Annotated Bibliography: Write an annotated bibliography on 5-12 documents (articles, books, etc.) related to the internship position/responsibilities; include a summary of the readings and relationship to the internship experience.
    • Project Analysis: Write a report to review a project completed at the internship site.
    • Feasibility study: Write a report to propose a new project or other changes that they believe would improve their internship site.
    • Research Report: Write a research report on a topic relevant to the internship organization, industry, field, etc.
    • Stakeholder Meeting Report/Analysis: Attend a meeting with stakeholders from the internship site and write a reflection on what was learned, how it affects the site and how it will affect current or future work. For example, students interested in education may attend a PTA meeting.
    • Letter to Future Interns: Write a hypothetical (or real) letter to future interns. Include reflection on the internship experience (what went well, what areas were challenging), as well as advice for success.

    Career Development/Life Skill Assignments

    • Informational Interviews: Conduct Informational Interviews with staff at the site, or other professionals in the field. Write a report/analysis of findings.
    • Job Shadow a professional or professionals in different areas at the internship site. Write a report/analysis of the experience.
    • Create or update a resume – have the document reviewed by professionals at the internship site, the Career Development Center, and/or the faculty supervisor
    • Summarize the transferable skills developed at the internship site in a reflective paper
    • Write a cover letter – identify a real internship or job opening and write an application cover letter that highlights the transferrable skills developed in the internship experience
    • Develop Personal Branding/Social Networking tools – design a LinkedIn profile, online portfolio, or write a report on professional networking leads
    • Write Thank-You Letters to Site Supervisor(s) – specify why the internship was beneficial, what was learned, how the Site Supervisor helped with the intern’s learning and growth, future steps as a result of the experience
    • Give a Presentation on the internship to other students. Discuss:
      • Internship search
      • Goals for the internship
      • Expectations
      • Responsibilities
      • Supervision
      • Challenges
      • Learning
    • Poster Presentations - Give a formal presentation at a poster symposium. Include topics such as: 
      • Research conducted
      • Organizational history/mission
      • Special internship project
      • Responsibilities and learning    

    Grading and Assessment

    See the Grading and Assessment section of the Hamline University Internship Guide for general guidelines on grading internships.

    Because internships fulfill the LEAP credit in the Hamline Plan, faculty supervisors are required to provide assessment data to the University to report on student learning outcomes. The LEAP Learning Agreement was structured in such a way to streamline this process for students and faculty because students are required to develop specific learning goals aimed at achieving the learning outcomes, and also to articulate what artifacts they will produce to demonstrate their learning. In addition to being useful material for grading, these products can also be as assessment data.

    Products of student learning can take many forms, such as reflective journals, papers, presentations, etc. See the section on reflection for ideas on formal assignments that could be used to promote reflection and demonstrate student learning.

    You may choose to have students address their learning and progress toward the learning outcomes in one summative reflective paper. An example prompt for this paper could be:

    Reflecting on your internship experience, discuss the following:

    • How did the knowledge you have acquired as a student (either in your major/minor or generally as a student of the liberal arts) inform your internship experience? What academic concepts or theories did you observe and/or apply in your internship?
    • How did the skills you have developed as a student at Hamline prepare you for your internship experience? In what ways did you apply these skills? How did the skills and experience you developed at your internship site inform your studies at Hamline?
    • In what ways did you demonstrate initiative during your internship to monitor your performance, identify areas for personal or professional development, and use your existing skills and resources to learn and grow in those areas?
    • Identify one or more aspects of Hamline’s Mission, Vision and Values and discuss how you applied in your work as an intern.

    At the end of the internship experience, faculty must upload assessment data to the University assessment software, Blackboard Outcomes. This data will be randomly sampled on a regular basis by a team of faculty and staff to assess as a whole how students are faring in their demonstration of learning outcomes in each of the Hamline Plan areas.

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    Crisis Management

    Because internships take place in community settings, students will, at times, face a variety of conflicts or concerns. The following are some common concerns that may arise during an internship, as well as steps for addressing the issues.

    1. The student is not being given substantive work or appropriate supervision
      This can be a helpful learning experience for students to advocate for themselves in a workplace setting. Talk with students about how to have this conversation with their site supervisor. Help them make a plan for when to discuss the issue and how to approach the topic in a professional way. The Internship Program Director can assist with this as well.

      If this initial conversation does not prove to be effective, you may choose to intervene as faculty supervisor, or you may ask the Internship Program Director for assistance with intervening. Contact the site supervisor and discuss your concerns with him or her. Brainstorm ways that the student can get additional work or assistance at the site. Follow-up with the student and the site supervisor in a week or two to make sure changes have been made.

      If the situation has not improved, the student may choose to terminate the internship. Consult the Internship Program Director for assistance on how to terminate the internship in a professional manner. See the section on what to do if the internship falls through for options for maintaining or terminating the internship registration.
    2. The Internship Site Supervisor has left the organization
      If an internship site supervisor leaves his or her position midway through the internship, the student may switch site supervisors to another staff person at the internship site. Students should contact the Internship Program Director with the name and contact information of the new site supervisor, and share it with you as the faculty supervisor as well.  
    3. The Student is unable to get enough hours to meet the minimum requirement
      If a student discovers that he or she is unable to fulfill the minimum hour requirement for the internship, he or she may choose to extend the internship in to the subsequent term by requesting an “Incomplete” grade from you as the faculty supervisor. Students must have worked at least 80 hours at their internship in order to be eligible for an incomplete. It is up to your discretion as the faculty supervisor whether to grant an incomplete, and how to structure the incomplete contract (available on the Registration and Records website: www.hamline.edu/registrar). If students are taking an incomplete, they should alert the Internship Program Director about when they anticipate they will complete their hours and turn in their Final Evaluation. Once they have turned in their Final Evaluation and any remaining assignments to you, you may assign a final grade by submitting a grade change to Registration and Records.  
    4. The Internship has fallen through
      Internships may fall through for a variety of reasons – changes at the internship site mean they can no longer support an intern, poor student performance results in the student being terminated, etc.

      First and foremost, it is important to reflect upon and process what happened with the student. This experience itself can be a useful learning tool. You can also refer students to the Internship Program Director or Career Counselors in the Career Development Center to reflect upon the implications this has for their personal or professional development.

      In terms of salvaging academic credit out of the experience, the student has several options. If the event happened prior to the add/drop deadline or the withdrawal deadline for the term, he or she may choose to simply drop or withdraw from the internship experience. If it is past the add/drop deadline or the withdrawal deadline, he or she may choose to submit a Petition of Academic Policy (available on the Registration and Records website) to request a retroactive drop or withdrawal. Such petitions are subject to a $50 late fee, if approved.

      If the student accrued enough hours at the internship site that he or she would like to salvage the experience for academic credit, he or she may find another internship site to complete any remaining hours. Students pursuing this option should notify the Internship Program Director of this change and file a new LEAP Learning Agreement. The Internship Program Director is also available to assist students with finding alternative sites, as needed.  
    5. The student is unhappy in the internship
      Though not a crisis per se, students can experience distress if they realize during an internship that the field they were considering does not align with their skills or interests. Although this is difficult for students, it can be a valuable learning experience. First, process the feelings and experience with the student. Try to determine if this is a natural “low” that many students feel when they experience a challenge at their internship site, or if it may be due to a poor fit between the student and the organization. As long as the student is not in an unsafe or unhealthy environment, and he or she is being well-supported at their internship site, encourage them to continue with the internship and use the experience as an opportunity to explore what they do like about the field, as well as to explore other related careers that might be a better fit.

      At the end of the internship, reflect on the experience as a whole. What did it teach the student about him or herself and the world of work? Even if the experience was not what the student hoped, what positive things came out of it (i.e. skills developed, networking contacts, etc.) that he or she can leverage for future opportunities? What does this mean for his or her future career trajectory? Would it be beneficial to try a similar internship in a different setting, or a completely different internship elsewhere?

      Refer students to the Career Development Center for further processing, career counseling or career exploration.
    6. The internship is an unsafe space for students
      If the student feels at risk or experiences harm at any time during the internship experience, contact the Internship Program Director immediately. As appropriate, the Internship Program Director will intervene on behalf of the student and the University to terminate the internship and contact the appropriate authorities.

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    Compensation

    During the academic year (Fall-Spring), faculty are not compensated for supervising individual interns. During the summer term, faculty receive a stipend for supervising students who register for internships.
    Faculty who supervise interns through an internship seminar are compensated for teaching the course during the academic year as well as during the summer.

    Additional Resources

    • National Society for Experiential Education: http://www.nsee.org/  
    • Cooperative Education and Internship Association: http://www.ceiainc.org  
    • Center for Teaching and Learning at Hamline: http://www.hamline.edu/offices/center-for-teaching-and-learning/  
    • Eyler, Janet, and D.E. Giles. A Practitioners Guide to Reflection in Service-Learning. Nashville: Vanderbilt University, 1996. 

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