Academic Internships Office



How can I make the most out of my internship?

Ultimately, you should strive to always show your best self. A few tips to help along the way:

  • Be on time. A few minutes early is ideal.
  • Get your assignments done and your deadlines met!
  • Step up to the plate. Take the initiative and go the extra mile. 
  • Make friends!
  • Anticipate problems, and have a Plan B.
  • Learn "boss" language. "If it isn't too much trouble..." means, "Do it, the sooner the better." "If I may make a suggestion…." means, "Do it this way…" "I don't want to rush you." means, "Hurry up." Learn the cues your boss uses.
  • Be aware of when you are asking for things. Many factors - today's mood, the success of your last project, the company's latest earning report - can make the difference between a positive or a negative response.
  • Improve yourself! Learn about the industry and your career field.
How does an internship work with Financial Aid?
  • You should make sure to submit your paperwork on time so that you are registered for the correct number of credits for financial aid purposes.
  • Paid internships could also impact your eligibility for financial aid next year since they count towards your taxable income.
  • If you have Work Study as a part of your award and find a Work Study position in your career field, you may qualify to take it as an internship! 

Touch base with us or the Financial Aid office if you have any questions. 

Should I get paid?
A. Though our office strongly promotes paid opportunities, it really comes down to what your role is and with what organization. (Some nonprofit and social services agencies can only offer unpaid internships.) If you are working more than part-time at a for-profit organization and contributing to the actual work that the company performs, you should be paid or compensated in some way.
What if things change at my internship?
A. Contact your faculty sponsor to find new objectives that you can meet. Submit these in writing to your sponsor and/or our office, and we will update your information accordingly. It is your responsibility to reach out to us, and to get approval from your faculty!
I'm not learning from my internship, How can I ask for more to do?
A. Firstly, you should discuss your Learning Agreement objectives with your supervisor and see if you can change your role to find ways improve the experience. If that doesn't work, reach out to your faculty sponsor and our office! We will do our best to make sure that your experience meets your professional and academic expectations.
What if I have a disability?
A. If it is an obvious physical disability, it is best to address it immediately. If accommodations are not needed for the interview, but you know the interviewer will be wondering how you will be able to accomplish the challenges of the position, it is best to respond to what may be an unasked question in a straight-forward and friendly manner. That will help the entire interview be more comfortable and personal, and will more likely open the employer to a positive consideration for your success in the job. If you have questions about how and/or when to disclose an "invisible" disability, please feel welcome to come to our office or contact Disabilities Support Services for guidance.
I am being treated badly at my internship! What do I do?
A. If you are uncomfortable in your position, let someone know. You should visit with your supervisor first unless it is your supervisor who is causing your discomfort and you are "afraid" to approach them. Let your faculty sponsor or the Academic Internship Office know as soon as possible. We will guide you or step in to help address the situation. The most important thing is to let someone know what's happening.
What if I was hurt at my internship?
A. Report your injury to your employer right away! The employer's insurance usually cover any accident typical to the internship workplace. Visit with your employer to determine what coverage they offer interns. If you have a paid position, you will be covered under Washington State Labor and Industries. Some volunteer/unpaid positions are also listed under the employer's L&I. Sometimes an employer will request proof of insurance from the student. Your regular insurance company can provide the documentation the employer requires and usually involves a simple phone call request to your insurance agent's office. If you have any questions regarding insurance or liability, please contact the Academic Internship Office.
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