Housing Studies Internship FAQs


What is an internship?

An internship is an opportunity for you to receive college credit for completion of work at an approved housing-related location.


When should I do an internship?

You should arrange for an internship during your last year in the Housing Studies program or after you have completed at least one half of all of the courses listed as professional courses in the program (program course requirements and courses in the area of concentration).

The 300 internship hours are typically completed during one academic term – fall, spring or summer semester. It may be very difficult to complete other courses during the semester in which you complete the internship. However, sometimes the internship site supervisor prefers that you spread the 300 hours beyond one semester. It may then be possible to register for other coursework if the class times do not conflict with your internship site work hours.


When should I start looking for my internship?

It typically takes from eight to twelve weeks to locate and complete the arrangements for an internship. Thus, you need to begin looking for an internship early in the semester prior to the semester in which you wish to actually do the work.

Additional time may be required if you will be working with vulnerable individuals (such as the elderly, children, etc.) at your internship site, because state law requires the agency to complete a background check on you before you begin work.


Who will be my faculty internship supervisor?

Your departmental faculty advisor will serve as your internship faculty supervisor. The terms faculty advisor and faculty supervisor are used interchangeably.


How do I find a site for an internship?

It is your responsibility to find an internship. Your first step should be to meet with your faculty advisor to discuss possible locations that would fit with your professional goals. Note: Your faculty advisor may not be on staff during the summer to assist you in preparing for an internship for the fall semester, so you need to plan well in advance.

Your second step is to meet with a career counselor in Career and Internship Services (198 McNeal Hall or 411 Bruininks Hall). Internship postings are listed in GoldPASS, although students frequently find an internship by contacting a work site directly to inquire about internship possibilities.


How do I get credit for the internship?

  • Complete the Internship Experience Agreement (Refer to the instructions for completing the Internship Experience Agreement.)
  • Enroll in HSG 4196 for two (2) credits, being sure to select the section assigned to your faculty advisor. Note: The internship grade base is S/N. You will be graded on completion of the terms of the contract, a written report, and an oral presentation.
  • Submit all required materials to your faculty advisor by the last regular day of the semester before final exams.
  • Your grade will be submitted for HSG 4196 after (1) your internship has been completed, (2) the written report has been submitted, and (3) the oral report has been presented.


How many hours are required for my internship?

  • You must complete a minimum of 300 hours in an approved internship.
  • You may begin to count hours toward the 300-hour minimum only after the Internship Experience Agreement has been completed and signed by the site supervisor and your faculty advisor.


Do I need to create learning goals for my internship?

In consultation with the faculty supervisor and the internship site supervisor, you will develop the specific learning goals and objectives to be achieved and include them as part of the Internship Experience Agreement.

Keep in mind that you are developing the objectives for your internship just as an on-campus class would have objectives in a syllabus. The internship location may have well-defined objectives for interns because they routinely have interns; other locations may be open to developing objectives based on your interests and abilities as long as they fit within the context of that location.


What kinds of tasks are expected of me during my internship?

The specific tasks and responsibilities will vary depending on the location and the roles of professionals in that setting. The internship should allow you to participate as a paraprofessional. In most situations, after an orientation period, you should be able to perform at a level they would expect of a newly hired entry-level professional.


What is expected of my internship site supervisor during my internship?

The internship site supervisor is a critical component of a successful internship. Before you begin, the supervisor identifies and approves the tasks you are to complete and your hourly work schedule.

During your internship, the supervisor needs to give you enough direction so that you can proceed with the tasks. Initially, this may mean frequent meetings with you on a scheduled basis. As you attain more competence in the organization, they may not need to meet with you as frequently but should be available when necessary.

At the end of the internship, the supervisor should complete an evaluation of your work. (See below.) 


What do I need to submit for my internship after I’ve completed it?

Final Written Report:
In your written report, you must…
1. explain the nature of the organization where the internship was completed
2. summarize the internship experience, including the projects or tasks on which you worked
3. evaluate what you felt you gained from the experience and how it relates to your professional goals
4. include an appendix of examples of letters, forms, and other materials that were utilized or completed during the internship

NOTE: Do not include any proprietary and/or confidential information of the organization or their clients/customers. If necessary, blacken out names of individuals.

  • Your cover page should include the following information:
    • Your name
    • Area of concentration
    • Registration term and year
    • Beginning and end dates of your internship
    • Internship site: name of organization, address and telephone number
    • Internship site supervisor: name and title

The Table of Contents for your internship report should be as follows:
I. Background regarding agency, business or organization
II. Summary of internship experience (projects completed, responsibilities, work tasks)
III. Self-evaluation of experience (skills gained, link to professional goals, etc.)
IV. Site supervisor’s evaluation (evaluation form and/or letter)
V. Internship Learning Contract
VI. Appendix (examples of forms, documents, reports or other materials)

  • Your written report is due to your faculty supervisor at least one week prior to the presenting your oral report.
  • Your report should be submitted in a 3-ring binder.
  • Note that the reports are kept by your faculty supervisor for future reference by students, faculty and others.

Internship Site Supervisor’s Evaluation  

  • Your site supervisor must complete an evaluation form from their organization and/or write a letter of recommendation about your work. A letter must be addressed to “To whom it may concern.”
  • Submit a copy of the completed form or letter to your faculty supervisor at the time you submit your written report (see above).

Oral Report  

  • You are required to present your internship report orally to a group of faculty and students.
  • Your presentation should be approximately 20 minutes long.
  • The presentation session for all internship students in a given term is usually scheduled for three hours at the end of the semester. For summer internships, the presentation session is held at the beginning of fall semester.
  • You are expected to attend the entire session in order to listen to your fellow students’ presentations.


Are there any funding opportunities for my internship?

You may apply for an internship scholarship through the College of Design. Awards of up to $500 are available to students in the Department of Design, Housing and Apparel who are completing paid or unpaid internships. Applications are available online