Political Science Internship Requirements
The department asks that students meet certain eligibility requirements to participate in the Public Affairs Internship Program. If students do not meet these requirements, they should consider meeting with the Internship Director and discussing their eligibility. In some cases, the department may be able to waive a specific eligibility requirement.
Students should be at least junior status at the start of the internship period, be a Political Science major or minor, and have a 3.0 GPA overall or in the major to be eligible to participate. Students who do not meet these eligibility requirements should see the Internship Director to request a waiver. Waivers can be granted on a case-by-case basis.
Internships with sponsoring organizations that are involved in government and public affairs qualify for the Public Affairs Internship Program. While the department has information on local and national organizations that are currently interested in interns posted on the Public Affairs Internship Program bulletin board on the second floor of Bentley Annex, students are not limited to these opportunities. Many students find their own internship opportunities.
The department asks that students work approximately 20 hours for their sponsors over the academic term for each credit hour they want to earn. Students can earn up to 12 credit hours of internship credit (POLS 4910), 3 of which can count toward their Political Science major electives. The remaining hours count toward the total university hours needed for the degree. Of these 12 credit hours, students can opt to take up to 3 hours for graded credit, which allows students to earn a letter grade for their internship hours. Students can alternatively opt to earn credit-only hours toward their internship. Students earn grades of "credit" or "no credit" for these hours. A student intern who wishes to earn 3 hours of graded-credit and 3 credit-only hours for the internship would need to work a total of 120 hours for the sponsor over the academic term, about 8 hours per week for a 15-week semester.
Students must be enrolled in POLS 4910 during the semester in which they are participating in the approved internship. Graded or ungraded credit for internships will not be awarded retroactively.
The academic requirements differ for students registered for all credit-only hours and those who are registered for any graded-credit hours. After an internship application has been approved, the student should make sure to schedule an appointment with the Internship Director to discuss the academic requirements of the internship and how to submit work.