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An internship is a student (intern) work-based experience that may be implemented in two ways.

A "General Internship" allows students to observe and participate in daily operations, develop direct contact with job personnel, ask questions about particular careers, and perform certain job tasks. This strategy is exploratory and allows the student to receive "hands-on" experience in one or more career areas of interest. A "General Internship" may be paid or unpaid. Course credit is dependent upon local school policy and/or the number of hours achieved. Career Development (General Internships) are identified by state course codes under Workforce Development Education. Facilitation of General Internships may be conducted by teachers, Career Development Coordinators, Industrial Education Coordinators, or Job Brokers.

A Career Major Internship deviates from the General Internship in that the work-based experience is directly related to the classroom instruction and the chosen career focus of the student. It may be integrated within instruction or subsequent to the completion of instruction, e.g. course or course sequence. Career Major Internships may be paid or unpaid. Course credit is dependent upon local school policy and/or number of hours achieved. For example, if an internship is integrated with a course, the total course hours are recognized for credit. A minimum of 160 hours should be completed. State course codes identify course titles within which Career Major Internships may occur and not by the strategy name, e.g. 7222 Allied Health Sciences II or III. Program area/course discipline teachers need to arrange and supervise on-site internships. (Note: Medical liability insurance is required and obtainable for Career Major Internships integrated within Allied Health Sciences II, III, and Medical Sciences II, III.)


An internship provides a realistic environment within which a student intern learns about a particular industry or occupation and applies knowledge and skills. It is most applicable to careers that require a high level of academic preparation and technical knowledge before a student is placed for field experience. An internship experience is more applicable in the second semester or last grading period of the school year, subsequent to completion of a related course sequence. Summer internships are also recommended and would follow an extensive education program to prepare a student for field experience, unless it is a General Internship. General Internships simply involve observing professionals as they carry out their duties and Career Internships are designed to be capping experiences, which allow students to apply hands-on activities that are taught in class.

Internships are preferably aligned to a combination of related classroom experiences and field experiences. Interns need some time each week of their internship for updating and progress evaluations. A specific set of competencies should be agreed upon with workplace personnel (internship/development/training plan). The field experience should be designed to address these competencies, and class time should be provided to monitor a student's proficiency in the competencies.


  1. Create and/or administer a criteria for selection of students.
  2. Create and administer criteria for the selection of a career agency.
  3. Identify the business/industry locations (career agency).
  4. Identify and orient involved school personnel about their responsibilities.
  5. Identify and orient work-based, on-site preceptors (business/industry employers, and/or employees).
  6. Create and/or confirm a career agency's affiliation agreement that outlines expectations between the school and the career agency.
  7. Ensure legal requirements to be met, e.g. liability insurance.
  8. Create and confirm an internship/developmental/training plan with each respective student, his/her parents, and on-site preceptor(s). Ensure internship assignments are relevant to instruction.
  9. Supervise and/or accompany student interns to work-based sites.
  10. Schedule interim conferences with each student intern and respective career agency.
  11. Evaluate the internship process and outcomes.
  12. Submit report(s) to school officials and business/industry.


Organizing Student Internship Experiences
Shared by the Catawba Technology Education Consortium.

"I want to enter the internship program because..."
Shared by the Southern Regional Education Board.
(pdf, 14kb)

Parental Permission Agreement
Shared by the Job Ready Work Based Learning Guide.
(doc, 36kb)

Sample Internship Eligibility Guidelines
Shared by the Job Ready Work-Based Learning Guide.

Internship Program - Student Approval Notice
Shared by the Catawba Technology Education Consortium, Catawba County, North Carolina.
(doc, 25kb)

Internship Worksite Confirmation Notice
Shared by the Catawba Technology Education Consortium, Catawba County, North Carolina.
(doc, 26kb)

Work-Based Learning Agreement
Shared by McHenry County, South Carolina.
(doc, 53kb)

Project at Job Site
Shared by the Southern Regional Education Board.
(doc, 23kb)

Internship and Shadowing Daily Log - What Did I Learn Today?
Shared by Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, North Carolina.
(doc, 27kb)

Internship Self-evaluation Report
Shared by Iredell-Statesville Schools, Iredell County, North Carolina
(doc, 28kb)

Journal: Academic Internship Program
Shared by Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, North Carolina.
(doc, 58kb)

Business/Industry Field Trip
Cooperative Education
Entrepreneurial Experiences
Job Shadowing
School-Based Enterprise
Service Learning