Completing Internships for Academic Credit

By Sarah Hildebrand

Photo by Jason Goodman on Unsplash

There are many benefits of completing an internship, from gaining a new skillset to networking within a field of interest. In order to make the most out of your internship, you might also want to consider completing it in exchange for academic credit.

IDS 81620: Scholarly Praxis at Work in the World

Each Fall semester, The Graduate Center runs a 3-credit course called IDS 81620: Scholarly Praxis at Work in the World (full description below), which allows PhD and master’s degree students to receive academic credit for internships done outside of the academy. This class is unique in that the majority of your work will take place in your internships, which should take up 8-10 hours per week. The course itself will only meet once every other week, and the readings, discussions, and limited assignments are designed to provide you with both pragmatic support and an intellectual framework for connecting the work you’re doing in your internships with the work you are doing in your programs, and for thinking about the role that work plays in all our lives.

This is a great space to talk about your internship, identify key takeaways, and troubleshoot any issues. It’s also an invaluable opportunity to hear about the experiences of your classmates, which may inspire you to pursue additional career paths or explore organizations you might not have heard of before.

It’s important to note that, even if your internship is paid, you are still eligible to take the course!

Course Description

In this class, we will consider the myriad ways that those of us with the privilege of advanced training in our disciplines can put that training to work in the world beyond the academy. This course is designed for students who are concurrently doing an internship, and it is meant to support a process of reflection –– on yourself, your scholarship, your commitments and values, and the work you want to do in the world –– and the building of a roadmap for your future.

The course ultimately serves to help students articulate the connection between their scholarly interests and their work in other contexts, to sketch out their long-term career goals, and to build a network of contacts that can help them accomplish these goals.

Next Steps

If you’re interested in pursuing an internship for academic credit, consider setting up an appointment with one of our  career advisors via Handshake to discuss best practices. Bear in mind that obtaining a Fall internship will likely mean beginning your job search in the late Spring and early Summer.

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