As an intern or co-op student, you develop a professional reputation. Make it positive by:
- Striving to fulfill your learning objectives
- Observing organization standards and rules
- Listening to instructions and asking questions
- Seeking and accepting constructive criticism
- Assuming responsibility for and taking pride in your work
- Maintaining positive and professional relationships with co-workers and clients
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Rights & Responsibilities
- Communication Keep your supervisor informed of your progress; talk honestly and professionally with your supervisor if you are experiencing any difficulties.
- Confidentiality Maintain confidentiality regarding your employer, customers, clients and co-workers; disclose information only on a “need-to-know” basis for the purpose of completing work assignments.
- Liability Understand legal liability issues related to your work site and activities; UNL does not insure students during periods of temporary employment through internships or co-ops; do not sign any waiver without legal counsel (which may be obtained through UNL Legal Services 335 Nebraska Union, 472-3350).
- Harassment Treat co-workers, including other interns, clients, vendors, and others encountered on the job politely and professionally; unwelcome, uninvited behavior with sexual overtones occurring in the work place is sexual harassment and is illegal; alert your supervisor if you feel victimized by such behavior.
- Accommodations Tell your employer what accommodations might be needed for you to successfully complete your work assignments; employers must provide reasonable, but not necessarily the exact accommodation requested.
If you are uncomfortable or unsure of how to address a particular issue in your internship, meet with a Counselor in Career Services to explore options and possible measures.
Planning Your Experience
Career Services provides you with tools to make a successful plan for your internship or co-op.
The Internship Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) outlines:
- Personal learning objectives
- Responsibilities of you and your employer
- Training/orientation provided by your employer
Both you and your supervisor will sign the MOU, indicating a mutual understanding of the nature of your work and of your goals. Keep a copy of your completed MOU and send another to Career Services.
Some academic departments use alternative forms to document internships. In this case, the Memorandum of Understanding is not required, but Career Services requests a copy.. By reporting your internship to Career Services, you provide resources for future UNL students seeking internships and you support recruitment of new students to the University by providing a record of where UNL students find internships.
Earning Academic Credit
Many UNL departments allow students to earn academic credit in conjunction with an internship. Career Services provides an Academic Credit Contract (ACC) to record the faculty sponsor, credit hours and course requirements. As applicable, keep a copy of the ACC and send another to Career Services.
With faculty approval, both you and a faculty member will sign the ACC, indicating a mutual understanding of the nature of your academic and professional assignment. Keep a copy of your completed ACC and send another to Career Services.
Some academic departments use alternative forms to document academic credit taken in conjunction with an internship. In this case, the Academic Credit Contract is not required, but Career Services requests a copy of the alternative document(s) for reporting purposes.
To seek academic credit:
1. Contact and obtain approval from a faculty sponsor in the department from which you seek credit.
2. Work with the faculty sponsor to determine:
- Number of credit hours to be earned
- Academic requirements in addition to the internship activities
- Grade status (letter grade or pass/no pass)
- Appropriate course and call number for registration
3. Enroll in the course. Regular tuition and fees are incurred for credit hours earned in conjunction with internships.
Career Services offers the opportunity for academic credit through an internship course in the Department of Educational Psychology, EDPS 496/896.
Evaluating Your Experience
Evaluations will provide valuable feedback for you, your employer, and Career Services. At the end of each term in your internship, both you and your supervisor should complete an Internship Evaluation as provided below:
Print each form, provide the appropriate evaluation for your supervisor, and complete the Student’s Internship Evaluation. Ideally, you and your supervisor will share your respective evaluations with the other. Send a copy of both completed documents to Career Services.