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Internships for Academic Credit

Internships are an integral part of a Macalester College liberal arts education. Academic internships are a structured form of experiential learning that can take place in a wide range of companies and organizations in the Twin Cities and around the world. 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 workplace setting (across in-person, remote, or hybrid modalities). Through internships, students can test out career interests, develop professional skills, and pursue personal growth. 

Macalester considers the following components to be essential in a high-quality internship experience: 

  • Real-world opportunities to apply the knowledge gained in the classroom (it must not be simply to advance the operations of the employer or replace the work that a regular employee would routinely perform).
  • Learned skills and knowledge that are transferable to other employment settings.
  • A defined beginning and end that is mutually agreed upon and consistent with institutional sponsor guidelines and schedules. 
  • A position description with clear responsibilities and required/desired qualifications.
  • Clearly defined learning objectives/goals supportive of the student’s academic program goals and institutional requirements.
  • Direct supervision by a professional with relevant expertise and educational and/or professional experience who provides productive feedback, guidance, and the resources and equipment necessary to successfully complete the assignment.

(Source: “NACE’s Guide to Internships,” National Association of Colleges and Employers, 2023)

During the 2022-2023 academic year, 273 students participated in credit-bearing internships across 26 disciplines. The 2022-2023 Internship Site List is available for review at this link.

Career Exploration is here to help students find, register, and successfully complete an internship.

Note: International students at Macalester on student visas must register all internship experiences for credit. Review the information on the “Registering an Internship for Credit” web page, including the International Student section at the end.