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What is an internship?

An internship is a form of experiential learning that integrates knowledge and theory learned in the classroom with practical application and skills development in a professional setting. Internships give students the opportunity to gain valuable applied experience and make connections in professional fields they are considering for career paths; and give employers the opportunity to guide and evaluate talent. (National Association of Colleges and Employers-NACE). Students can learn more about University of Montana internships on the Experiential Learning and Career Success webpage. 

In general, most students in the IPAT Exercise Science program are required to complete an internship to meet their degree requirements.

General Internship Guidelines

  • 1 academic credit = a minimum of 45 hours of work, although some departments do go over the minimum (Faculty Senate Procedure #201.35)
  • 3 internship credits are needed to meet your graduation requirement.
  • Up to 6 internship credits can be applied toward graduation as either major requirements or elective credit.
  • Credit can be offered as a Traditional Grade or as Credit/No Credit depending on the requirements being met.
  • An electronic override is needed for the student to register for the course on Cyberbear to get credit.
  • Internships and internship credit are offered each semester throughout the academic year.
  • All internships taken for credit must be submitted via the Experiential Learning Agreement located on the Experiential Learning and Career Success website.

 Academic Credit - Students at the University of Montana are able to earn academic credit for internships. Often internships relate directly to majors offered at UM and may require additional work such as a research or writing component. You must seek a faculty from your major to oversee your internship and grant you credit.

Student Responsibilities
  • Find and accept an internship that aligns with your skills/interests, major and career goals.
  • Connect with the internship coordinator in your program who will supervise the internship experience and establish expected learning objectives and discuss credit options with you (credit can only be given by a faculty).
  • Connect with your worksite supervisor to discuss expected learning objectives/goals.
  • Complete your Experiential Learning Agreement (ELA) in the Experiential Learning and Career Success website. (Look for the Submit Learning Agreement in the Quick Links section. Then, "Submit Learning Agreement" on the next page.)
  • Complete your Learning Agreement and click submit.
  • You will receive an email, along with your faculty and work supervisor when your ELA has been received. Check the ELA status in your Experiential Learning and Career Success account to confirm if it was approved by the Internship Office, your faculty advisor and your site supervisor.
  • At the end of your internship, watch for an email from Gradleaders asking you to complete an evaluation of your experience.
Internship Office Responsibilities (Experiential Learning and Career Success)
  • Review the internship experience the student submitted.
  • Set up the approval process based on the information the student provided in regard to the faculty advisor and site supervisor.
  • Send approval for the internship experience to the student’s faculty advisor and site supervisor.
  • Review internship experience agreement status and contact the student if the internship needs additional information.
  • Send evaluations to student and supervisor.
Faculty Advisor and Internship Coordinator Responsibilities (IPAT)
  • Connect with the student to discuss credit options and learning objectives for their internship experience.
  • After the student has completed and submitted their ELA, watch for an email from ELCS/Gradleaders with the subject “An Experience Needs your Approval”. Please review and either approve or disapprove the student’s experience adding any details in the comments section.
  • Grade the internship.
Work-Site Supervisor Responsibilities
  • Review the email from Experiential Learning and Career Success with the subject, “An Experience Needs your Approval”.
  • Please review and either approve or disapprove the student’s experience adding any details in the comments section.
  • Approve or decline the student’s internship experience agreement adding any details in the comments section.
  • At the end of the internship, watch for an email from Experiential Learning and Career Success/Gradleaders asking you to complete an evaluation of the student’s performance.