POLICIES AND PRACTICES REGARDING DIVISION OF BUSINESS INTERNSHIPS
Students majoring in Division of Business (DOB) majors, Accounting, Business Administration, Organizational Leadership and Technical Management, have the opportunity to perform internships for credit. The internship class is 3 credit hours and students may perform more than one internship for credit.
Students are encouraged to complete an internship as one of their elective courses in their major or minor. Internships provide a student the opportunity to gain some real-life experience in their chosen field of study. In addition, the internship provides networking opportunities and frequently a job offer.
Internships may be performed for a for-profit business, a non-profit organization or a governmental entity. The organization for which the internship duties are performed is called the sponsoring organization. Whether or not the intern is paid for his/her time is a matter between the student and the sponsoring organization. NWOSU and the DOB are not involved in this decision. The sponsoring organization must identify a contact person/ supervisor regarding the internship.
The duties and responsibilities of an intern should be similar to the duties and responsibilities of an entry-level or higher position in the specific field. The intern should have minimal to no clerical-type duties. An intern is not a “gofer.”
Students may arrange for an internship opportunity on their own. In this case, the student must inform the internship coordinator of the proposed sponsoring organization, contact person (name, phone number and email address) and the duties and responsibilities to be undertaken. It is the student’s responsibility to advise the internship coordinator if the proposed sponsoring organization is a current employer.
Although a student may perform his/her internship for a current employer, there are restrictions that apply. The duties and responsibilities of the internship must be significantly different than the student’s current work duties and responsibilities. Further the time dedicated to the internship duties and responsibilities must be in addition to the student’s work time for his/her current job. If the student wants to perform the internship for a current employer, then both the internship coordinator (identified as the internship instructor in the schedule of classes) and the DOB chair must approve the internship with the current employer in advance.
Frequently, the internship coordinator is contacted by local businesses, non-profit organizations and governmental entities looking for possible interns. Student who would like to perform an internship may contact the internship coordinator about opportunities he/she may have.
Remember, the sponsoring organization ultimately will decide from the applicants showing interest who will perform the internship. Each sponsoring organization has its own selection process.
To qualify for an internship, a student must be a DOB major and have successfully completed at least 75 credit hours with a 3.0 or better grade point average. The Division of Business chair may waive this requirement under exceptional circumstances.
Students apply for the internship by going to the DOB website and completing the online application (http://www.nwosu.edu/students-seeking-internships). After the application has been submitted, the internship coordinator will review the application to verify the student meets the minimum qualifications. If the student meets minimum qualifications, the internship coordinator will contact the student for any needed information. The internship coordinator must determine the likelihood of successful completion of the internship by the applicant before approving an internship. This determination is based on factors such as (but not limited to): (1) the duties and responsibilities of the proposed internship; (2) coursework successfully completed by the applicant; (3) applicant’s grade point average; (4) record of withdrawing from classes; (5) applicant’s maturity; (6) applicant’s work experiences; and (7) information gained from faculty members.
Once the internship has been approved, the internship coordinator will form a reading committee consisting of himself/herself and at least two additional faculty members. While most decisions regarding the internship will be made by the internship coordinator, he/she may seek input from the DOB chair or the reading committee.
Before a student starts his/her internship, the student must meet with the internship coordinator. This meeting may take place in person or via web conferencing, as determined by the internship coordinator. If the meeting is in person, it will usually be held on the student’s campus of attendance.
In order to earn credit for the internship the student must successfully complete at least 120 hours of work for the sponsoring agency. In a regular semester, this means 8-10 hours per week. In an 8-week session, the student will need to work, on average, 16-20 hours per week.
While engaged in the internship, the student must keep a detailed journal of his/her daily activities and learning experiences. The internship coordinator will explain this requirement in more detail to the intern before the internship begins.
During the course of the internship, the student must meet with the internship coordinator to discuss the progress of the internship. These meetings should occur between 30-40 hours of work completed, 60-70 hours and 90-100 hours. The student will also meet with the internship coordinator after all 120 hours have been completed. The student needs to schedule these meeting with the coordinator at least one week before the target hours are completed. This will provide time for the internship coordinator to receive feedback by the internship supervisor.
The intern must submit a detailed written report at the conclusion of the internship. The internship coordinator will provide the student details regarding the content and form of the paper at the beginning of the internship. The student will submit this report to the internship coordinator, reading committee members and the DOB chair, at least one week before the internship presentation.
Each intern must also make an oral presentation regarding the internship to the DOB faculty. This presentation will be available via ITV to all NWOSU campuses. The presentations are open to the student body and public. The internship coordinator will extend an invitation to the internship supervisor to attend the presentation. This is to be a professional presentation. The student is expected to be in professional business attire, utilize visual aids and note use any notes in making the presentation. The internship coordinator will provide the intern with more detailed information regarding the content of the presentation.
The members of the reading committee will review and grade the written report. Likewise, the members of the reading committee, as well as other DOB faculty members, will attend the intern’s presentation and submit feedback to the internship coordinator.
The internship coordinator will also seek feedback from the internship supervisor regarding the intern’s performance. This will be similar to an employee performance evaluation.
In determining the student’s final grade regarding the internship, the intern coordinator will take into account: (1) the student’s journal [level of detail and appropriate reflection]; (2) the internship supervisor’s reports; (3) the meetings with the intern during/after the internship; (4) the grades/evaluation of the final project [written report and oral presentation]. Note that not all of these elements may be weighted equally in determining the grade.