The Department of Government encourages students to intern at governmental and
non-profit agencies, as well as selected private-sector firms in order to gain
practical experience in a field related to Political Science. In some instances,
internships have provided interns with an opportunity for future employment.
While students may find their own internships, we encourage students to take
advantage of the Department's experience in placing interns.
Eligibility requirements for an internship: 3.0 or higher GPA. Students should
have completed subfield studies, preferably a core course, in the field in which
the internship is to be undertaken. Students are responsible for contacting
a faculty member to act as academic advisor for the internship. Preferably,
the advisor's teaching or research interests should be in the area of the internship.
Students can receive three (3) hours of credit for at least twenty (20) hours
of work weekly and a short paper and six (6) hours of credit for at least twenty
(20) hours of work weekly and a substantial paper.
The internship may be taken in any semester, including the summer. However,
it is suggested that planning and negotiations between the sponsor, intern,
and the academic advisor take place in the semester preceding the one in which
the project will be undertaken. All interns will be required to submit a written
paper treating some aspect of the internship experience. Examples of previous
papers submitted include a literature review, a well-kept log of the internship
experience, or a research project. The requirements for the written exercise
will be worked out between the faculty advisor and the intern. A "memorandum
of understanding" (click below) needs to be filled out and signed by all
three parties to the internship (student intern, internship sponsor, and academic
advisor), each of whom is to keep a copy. Additional copies are to be filed
with the Department of Government Office Manager and the student's academic
file. Finally, all would-be interns need to review the Internship Safety Guide
Internship Memorandum of Understanding
Directed Study gives students interested in some question or subject matter
an opportunity to explore it in more detail, under faculty guidance, for credit.
The typical directed study is a course-equivalent program involving one semester
of library research and preparation of several papers or one longer research
paper for three (3) hours credit. Students, however, are encouraged to be innovative
and explore multi-term group projects, travel to other locations, interviews,
or survey research. Students interested in a directed study should develop a
brief proposal describing their topic, how they think it could be approached,
and the amount of credit sought (1 to 6 sh). The proposal should be presented
to a faculty member with expertise or interest in the topic well before the
start of the term(s) during which the study would be conducted.
Eligibility requirements: 3.0 or higher GPA and consent of a faculty study director.
With an approved topic proposal, the student may receive between 1 to 6 sh of
academic credit as determined by the faculty sponsor. A directed study may be
done in any term, including summer. However, as directed studies may take longer
to complete than anticipated, it is advisable not to begin a directed study
the semester before graduation. Similarly, students planning to apply to graduate
school or law school are advised to do their directed study in the first term
of their senior year for possible use to strengthen their graduate/ law school
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