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What is an internship?

All Human Development and Family Study (HDFS) students are required to do a senior-level internship (HDFS 491).

  • The internship is designed to assist you in gaining pre-professional experience, to begin to establish a professional identity, and to enhance your appeal to potential employers.

  • The internship requires working a minimum of 204 hours at a professional work site in the HDFS field. Internships can be completed during the fall, spring or summer session.

  • To qualify for an internship, students must:
    • have a minimum GPA of 2.0 overall and 2.5 in major studies required courses;
    • be either in their last semester of coursework, or completed all coursework to be considered for internship; 
    • complete HDFS-490 (Professional Issues) prior to or concurrently with the internship; 
    • pass a background check; and
    • successfully complete Program Progress Review recommendations (if applicable).
  • Before even considering an internship students should gain experience working with children and/or families outside of their college courses (volunteer or paid experience).


How to apply for an internship

  1. Attend an informational internship meeting. These meetings are held the 3rd Tuesday in September and the fourth Tuesday in January. Online students will be required to participate in a virtual meeting during this week.

  2. Reflect: Think about the types of career options, job settings, and age groups that interest you.

  3. Gather information: Look through the internship “blue books” located in Heritage Hall 127. These books contain summaries of sites previously used by students. If you are an online student, you will get an electronic document of former sites of online students to review.

  4. Schedule a meeting with the internship coordinator prior to applying to discuss career objectives and goals.  

  5. Complete the internship application and preference sheet. These forms must be turned into your HDFS program director by the following dates:
    1. For a Spring internship: First Friday in October.
    2. For a Summer internship: First Friday in February.
    3. For a Fall internship: First Friday in March.
  1. Submit evidence of a recent criminal background check.
  1. The HDFS program director will review your application materials and approve students for internship.


Internship Forms: