Internship Program FAQ's

Internship Program FAQ's

How do I register for an internship course or the Academic Internship Program?

In order to get permission to register for an internship course you will need to complete an Internship Application on John Jay Careers Online. This application will be processed by the Center for Career and Professional Development and you will be emailed instructions telling you how to register on CUNY First.

When is the last day I can register for an internship course in the Academic Internship Program?

The Academic Internship Program follows the same schedule as normal courses at John Jay College. Your last to register for the semester is also the last day to register for the Academic Internship Course. However, if you obtain an internship within the first few weeks of the semester the Center for Career and Professional Development may be able to work with the Registrar’s office to help you get registered into an internship course after the registration deadline.

Do I have to find my own internship?

Yes, you will need to find your own internship in order to participate in the Academic Internship Program. You are not going to be assigned a placement after registering for the course. In order to find an internship we suggest using the resources and assistance of the Center for Career and Professional Development. The CCPD also has a handout that can be obtained from the front desk outlining resources in finding an internship.

Do I have to register and take an internship course to receive credit for an internship?

Yes, in order to receive credit for an internship experience you must register for and complete and internship course. Some courses are three (3) credits and some are six (6) credits. The amount of credit you receive for an internship is not determined by the amount of hours you complete at the internship site, but rather the academic course you are registered for.

Can I complete an internship this semester and register for the course next semester?

No, you must complete the internship and the internship course in the same semester.

How often do the Academic Internship courses meet?

If you are registered for a three (3) credit internship course then the class will meet for a total of 15 hours of class time, often this is in the form of five (5) meetings three (3) hours each meeting. So this means you will meet about every three (3) to four (4) weeks. If you are registered in a six (6) credit internship course then you will be meeting on a weekly basis throughout the semester.

Do the internship courses require academic work?

Yes, students are expected to complete some small projects and one large paper throughout the semester for the internship course. The final paper usually consists of an analysis of the internship experience using knowledge of the field. Academic work varies per professor and internship course.

Can I complete an internship in the Summer or Winter Semesters?

You can complete an internship in the Summer semester. The Summer semester is eight (8) weeks long and is usually offered in the first half of the summer (May – June). You will need to complete more hours during the summer semester to meet the requirements of the Academic Internship Program. This usually means that students will need to complete anywhere from 12 – 20 hours per week to meet the minimum requirements.  You cannot complete an internship during the Winter semester.  The Winter semester is only three (3) weeks long and is too short of an amount of time to obtain a meaningful internship experience.

How many hours at the internship site are required for the Academic Internship Program?

For students completing a three (3) credit internship course you are expected to complete a minimum of 96 hours at your internship site. For students completing a six (6) credit internship course you are expected to complete a minimum of 180 hours at your internship site. Remember that these are minimum requirements and you may be expected to work more hours depending on the internship site you choose.

Can I use my job as an internship?

No, you cannot use a paid position as an academic internship experience.  However, you can utilize a different department within your current employer to fulfill the academic internship requirements. You must perform all of your internship hours within a different department from where you are employed, you must be performing significantly different duties and responsibilities and you must have a different assigned supervisor for your internship experience then your work experience. This arrangement must be discussed and approved by the Associate Director of Academic Internships in the Center for Career and Professional Development prior to registration into the Academic Internship Program.

Can I use the same internship site twice for the Academic Internship Program?

No, if you have already used an internship site for academic credit then you cannot use it again to gain additional credits. You can however stay with the same organization but work in a different department performing different internship responsibilities. You must also have a different supervisor assigned to you. This arrangement must be discussed and approved by the Associate Director of Academic Internships in the Center for Career and Professional Development prior to registration into the Academic Internship Program.

Can I use a paid internship for credit in the Academic Internship Program?

Yes, paid internships can be used to fulfill the requirements of the academic internship program.

Can I participate in two internship positions in the same semester?

Yes, however this request is granted on a very limited basis.  You must receive approval from the Associate Director of Undergraduate Internships as well as both faculty supervisors.  You must also be registered for no more than 12 credits, have a GPA of at least a 3.0, and not be employed during the semester you intend to participate in the Academic Internship Program.

Can I start my internship before the semester starts?

Yes, you can begin your internship prior to the beginning of the semester however we can only count hours worked during the following scheduled times:

Fall Semester – Week of August 15th – Week of December 15th

Spring Semester – Week of January 15th – Week of May 15th

Summer Semester – Week of May 15th – Week of August 15th

 

Can I switch my internship during the semester?

Yes, you can switch your internship during the semester however it is highly discouraged.  If you experience difficulties during your internship you should use every means necessary to mediate those difficulties prior to resignation.  Prior to resigning any internship you must contact the Associate Director of Academic Internships to discuss the matter.  Even if you terminate your internship experience you are still held to the same grading standards as all other interns, which mean that you must either replace your internship with another experience or receive a lower grade for non-completion of the internship (which could result in a grade of “F”).

Can I split my internship hours between two internship sites?

Yes, however this is highly discouraged. Participating in an internship experience requires you to commit yourself to learning about an organization and what they accomplish. This is difficult to do if you are spending a minimal amount of time at the internship site. We suggest taking one internship experience at a time and dedicating yourself to the internship experience.

What if I don’t find an internship site prior to the beginning of the semester?

If you are unable to find an internship site prior to the beginning of the semester then we suggest that you drop the internship course.  If you are unable to drop the internship course then there may be an opportunity to receive a grade of incomplete “INC” and complete the internship in the following semester. This is not encouraged, instead it is suggested to de-enroll and then re-enroll for the internship course for the following semester.

What if I don’t finish my internship hours during the semester?

It is highly suggested that you try to get all of your hours completed during the semester however we understand that issues may arise during the internship that prevent this from happening. In the event that it looks like you will be unable to complete the required hours you must seek approval from the following:

  • Seek approval from your Site Supervisor in your internship to continue your hours past the end of the semester.  You must work with your Site Supervisor to create a schedule to complete your hours and a potential end date of when these hours will be completed.
  • If your supervisor agrees, you will then seek approval from your Faculty Advisor of the internship course to receive a grade of “incomplete” (INC).  You will need to supply your Faculty Advisor with the proposed schedule and tentative date of completion. You must obtain your Faculty Advisor’s approval.
  • If both your Site Supervisor and Faculty Advisor agree to these terms then you must notify the Associate Director of Academic Internships of your proposed work schedule and end date of your internship at the Center for Career and Professional Development.

What happens to my grade if I terminate my internship or get fired?

You must notify the Associate Director of Academic Internships if you intend to terminate your internship PRIOR to any action to do so. You will need to go through a grievance procedure to attempt to rectify any complaint. If it is still determined that you will terminate/be terminated from your internship then we will work with you to find another internship placement that can fulfill the remainder of your hours. This may mean receiving a grade of “incomplete” (INC) until the remainder of the hours can be completed at an alternative internship site.

If you terminate your internship position without going through the procedures listed above then you will receive the grade determined by your instructor based on the number of hours you have completed at your internship site.  This could mean a potential failure of the academic internship course.

What if I am not doing ‘meaningful work’ in my internship?

If you feel as though you are not doing meaningful work at your internship site we ask that you first have a discussion about this with your internship Site Supervisor.  In this meeting you should explain to your supervisor what your concerns are AND supply your supervisor with a potential list of solutions.  We suggest that you attempt to identify areas/projects that you see could be a beneficial responsibility for you in the internship and propose this work plan to your supervisor in a professional way during the meeting.  Understand that about 40% of your time at the internship can be spent doing filing, copying, etc. and that the other 60% should be spent working on projects, shadowing full-time employees, or working with clients.

If the meeting with your Site Supervisor does not result in a satisfactory change in your job responsibilities then please notify The Center for Career and Professional Development.  The Center will then schedule a meeting between you, the Site Supervisor and an internship coordinator.

What if my listed supervisor on the Site Placement Form is not the supervisor I report to at my internship?

We ask that you try to list the actual supervisor you report to as the contact on your Site Placement Form.  The person who is listed in the Site Placement Form will be the one to receive your evaluation at the conclusion of the internship period.  Some organizations prefer to put one person in charge of the paperwork for interns even though they are not their direct supervisor, which is ok, if the organization prefers it that way.  We would suggest discussing who should be listed on the Site Placement Form with your supervisor(s) when you begin your internship. To update your form please email the Career Center with the correct information.

What if my supervisor is never around?

If you find yourself in an internship that does not provide you with an assigned supervisor or your assigned supervisor is unable to meet with you regularly during your internship period you must notify the Center for Career and Professional Development immediately. Each site should provide a supervisor who can be contacted and is able to meet weekly or bi-weekly with you.

What if my supervisor leaves during the semester?

If your supervisor leaves during your internship period the organization should provide you with another assigned supervisor. If they do, please provide this supervisor’s contact information to the Center for Career and Professional Development for inclusion in your Site Placement Form. If they do not provide you with a new supervisor please notify the Center for Career and Professional Development immediately.

What if my internship didn’t connect to my career goals?

Take a broader view of your career goals. Every internship, whether good or bad, will have taught you some skills that you can relate to your career goals. Think broadly about what skills your eventual career will need and then look at what skills you learned during your internship.  You will be surprised at some of the connections you can make.  If you are still having difficulty talk with your Site Supervisor or Faculty Advisor about your career goals and your internship experience.

What if I do not agree with my Site Supervisor’s evaluation of my work?

We suggest that you take a moment to reflect on your internship experience and determine if the feedback that was given is warranted. Often receiving critical feedback is a difficult process and can be emotional. Try to take an objective view to determine if the feedback you received has some truth in it, if it still feels as though your Site Supervisor’s evaluation does not accurately reflect your work, then we ask that you first discuss this in person with your supervisor during your termination meeting. If you have not reached a resolution that is satisfactory after this meeting then you may write a letter to your Faculty Advisor addressing your concerns.

What If

I am not doing ‘meaningful work’ in my internship? 
We are here to build a safe and healthy community for students, faculty, and staff. By reporting someone you feel is in distress, we are able to mediate and find solutions to your concerns, so everyone can be safe.
My listed supervisor on the Site Placement Form is not the supervisor I report to at my internship?
Simply click on the, "Submit a Report" button on the left. If you would like to, you may consult with a member of BIT and/or the Dean of Students before submitting a report through emailing us, BIT@jjay.cuny.edu.
If my supervisor is never around?

Once you submit a report, you will receive an acknowledgement from a member of the BIT team, confirming that we have viewed the report and are taking the appropriate steps to remedy the situation. You should not expect detailed information about the outcome of the report, because the issue may involve confidentiality rights of the person being reported.

To substantiate the report, we may speak with the person being reported; gather additional evidence or information by interviewing members of the John Jay Community; compile additional documentation; review evidence sources (e.g., Google, public information, Public Safety records, academic records); or make a referral to BIT or another entity.

If my supervisor leaves during the semester?
Report emergency or extreme situations immediately to the Public Safety Department at 212.237.8888 and/or 911 (as appropriate) if an individual displays an imminent threat to self or others, serious disruptive or threatening behavior, damages property, or breaks the law.
My internship didn’t connect to my career goals?
If you see or experience any of the following, submit a report. Elevated and severe behavioral concerns such as suicidal thoughts or impulses, violent and aggressive impulses, depression, disruptive behavior, emotional/behavioral dysregulation, or clear indication of physical and sexual abuse should immediately be reported to the Dean of Students for referral to the Behavioral Intervention Team. Mild to moderate mental and behavioral health concerns (e.g., signs of emotional difficulty, situational stressors, and changes in usual behavior) should be referred for consultation or intervention to the Wellness Center.