The purpose of an internship is to gain practical, on-the-job experience by working under the tutelage of an experienced professional. Each emphasis in the ITM degree requires at least three credits of internship, but you can take an additional five credits for technical elective credits. If you have a double emphasis (e.g., BCM and BCSM), you must must take three credits of internship for each emphasis. An internship is for one semester. A co-op is an internship which lasts for two consecutive semesters: summer-fall, spring-summer, or fall-spring.
Forty-six percent of our graduates tell us that their internship experience was "invaluable" to their success in their career. Another 29 percent tell us that it was of "high value". In other words, 75 percent of our graduates claim that the internship was very important to getting a great start in their careers.
- Internship Coordinator — This is the chair of the industrial studies department. The internship coordinator will assign the internship evaluators.
- Internship Evaluator — Is a faculty member who is assigned to each intern by the Internship Coordinator. This person monitors the intern, reviews and evaluates the weekly progress reports, the employer midterm and final evaluations, and the final report on Desire2Learn. This person also makes a site visit and grades the internship. This person may or may not be your academic advisor.
- Employer — This is the company, agency, or government entity who has hired the intern.
- Worksite Supervisor — This is the full time professional hired by the employer to whom the intern reports to.
- Academic Advisor — This is the UW-Platteville faculty or staff person who is assigned by the chair of the industrial studies department to be the student’s advisor throughout his or her college career. All the internship application forms and paperwork are e-mailed as attachments to your academic advisor. He or she must approve all the forms before they are forwarded to the department administrative assistant for permission to register.
Applying for An Internship
All the documents and forms discussed here are available for download on this web page.
- Read the Internship Handbook—at least humor us by giving it the heavy skim. It contains information for you, the intern; plus, it contains information for your employer who is hiring you as an intern.
- Set-up your UW-Platteville Password Self-Service. This allows you to reset your password when it expires. Your UW-Platteville password could expire while you are off-campus during your internship which would prevent you from submitting your weekly reports in Desire2Learn. WARNING! You cannot get a new password by calling or emailing to the UW-Platteville Help Desk. The Help Desk will ask your academic advisor for verification. Since faculty are not around during the summer, you will not be able to get a new password.
- Find an internship position. This is your responsibility.
- Fill out the application paperwork. Fill in all fields and if they do not apply then enter "NA". Submit via email attachments (PDF files only) to your academic advisor. Send both forms at once (your resume, Approval and Work Agreement Form). Do not submit them piecemeal. You do not need to sign the forms when you submit them via your UW-Platteville e-mail account.
- Your advisor will review your paperwork. If it is not complete and accurate, he or she will e-mail to you the required fixes so you can resubmit it.
- Once your advisor approves of your paperwork, he or she will forward it to the department administrative assistant.
- In unusual or special cases, the internship coordinator must approve the paperwork. Once it meets their approval, they will forward it to the departmental administrative assistant.
- The administrative assistant will enter the department approval in PASS. She will notify you of this via your UW-Platteville e-mail account so you can actually register for the internship credits in PASS.
- WARNING! By default, PASS will register you for one credit. Make sure you enter the correct number of credits. Double check to make sure you have enough credits in 3000 or higher courses. If you are short, you may want to take additional internship credits. (See FAQ below). Once your internship begins, you cannot increase the number of credits.
- Two business days later, the internship course will appear on your Desire2Learn account. You must upload all the paperwork (as PDFs) to the respective Desire2Learn dropboxes.
- Once your employer has finalized what you will be doing, you need to complete the Goals and Learning Outcomes Form and submit it on Desire2Learn. This form needs to be submitted no latter than the end of your first week of working as an intern.
- You are now ready to begin your internship.
- ATTENTION! Once you begin your internship, make sure you check your UWP email and the IS 4990 Internship class on D2L at least weekly—especially at the beginning. If there are any problems or adjustments which must be made, the department will be using email and/or the D2L News to notify you.
Frequently asked questions
What are the requirements for taking an internship?
How do I find an internship?
How many hours of internship work must I do?
Can I quit my internship once I have worked enough hours?
Can I quit submitting weekly reports once I have worked enough hours needed to meet the my credit hour requirements?
Can I change the number of internship credits after the internship begins?
How many credits of internship should I take?
What should I do if phone numbers, addresses, or other information on my forms change?
What if I don't know the start date, termination date, and other information on the application/work agreement form?
Is all this paperwork really necessary for doing an internship?
How should I name the files that I submit on Desire2Learn?
What should I do if I submitted the wrong form or need to make fixes to files that I have already submitted to Desire2Learn?
When will my intern evaluator for the summer be assigned to me?
Why does PASS show that I received an "I" or "F" for my internship grade?
Note: All forms and reports are submitted as PDFs—not as DOCX files.
- Failing to fill out the yellow highlighted fields completely and accurately on the Approval and Agreement Form. If dates and hours worked are not accurate, the form will be dumped back in your lap to fix. You will not be officially registered for as long as the problems remain. Federal law requires that the Registrar verifies part time vs full time status of students in order to qualify for financial aid. Whether you get financial aid or not, do it right the first time. The clerks are not going to look up whether you get financial aid or not, they just verify the info on the form.
- Failing to register for your internship in PASS before the deadlines. See the Academic Calendar as published by the Registrar for the various deadlines.
- Failing to register for the correct number of internship credits in PASS. The default is 1, but most interns are taking 3 or more credits.
- Failing to submit your forms, weekly reports, employer evaluations, and final reports to the D2L dropboxes. Submitting them to your advisor is not the final step. These are not official until they are in the D2L dropboxes.
- Failing to ask questions when in doubt concerning any of the details about the internship. Your academic adviser can help you find the answers. You must ask. He cannot read your mind.
- Failing to make sure you have enough credits for graduation, enough credits for technical electives, and/or at least 42 credits of 3000 or higher courses. You must take 3 credits of internship to graduate. Any extra internship credits can be used to fulfill any or all of these three credit requirements. Once the internship is started or completed, there is no way to get credit retroactively!
- Failing to get all the paperwork done before the end of the semester--that means the week before finals week. Once finals begin, faculty seclude themselves to finish their grading. Most faculty are on nine-month contracts. Once the semester is over, they are gone! Many will not check their UWP email or be in the office until the start of the next semester. If you don't have things done in time, you may have to wait until the next semester or redo your internship the following summer.
- Make sure you pay all the tuition for all your intern credits at the beginning of the term. Waiting until later may result in a bureaucratic nightmare for you.
A coop is nothing more than a two-semester internship. Even though it is considered one job by your employer, it is classified as two internships by the UWP's registrar's office; therefore, you must register for internship credits for each semester.
When you apply for the first semester of your internship, you have to submit the various forms and documents as explained elsewhere on this web page. Keep copies of these electronic files. In the weeks prior to the start of your second semester of the coop, (a) make copies of these files, (b) make the appropriate changes for the second half of your coop, (c) and resubmit them to your academic advisor, (d) once approved the department will send you an email so you can register via PASS, (e) submit the files to the D2L Dropbox, and (f) you can proceed with the last half of your coop.
You do not need a PIN for registering for summer classes, but you do need a PIN for fall and spring. Also, remember that the official beginning and ending dates for the UWP semester may not correspond 100% with the starting and ending dates of your employment. Also, remember that faculty are not on contract during the summer for advising, so it is your responsibility to manage this process in a timely manner.
The virtual desktop (VDT) allows you to use special computer applications without having to use one of the computer labs on campus. Here is a list of the software applications loaded on the VDT. Active students, faculty, and staff can use the VDT. Any computer connected to the internet can be set up to use the VDT. To access the VDT, you must load a special client software on your computer. This is like a specialize web browse. The client software is free.
The following documents will help you get started using the VDT.
- Directions for loading the VDT client software
- Directions for logging in and using the VDT
- How to save files when using the VDT and other FAQ
- Here are some known issues in using the VDT