Internships for Public Health Science Credit
Public Health Science majors may apply up to 6 credits of experiential learning (internship or research independent study) towards the 12+ credits of PHSC options, regardless of course prefix. PHSC internships may be paid or unpaid.
Where can I intern for PHSC credit?
It is the student’s responsibility to find and apply for an internship.
The Public Health Science program maintains relationships with a variety of public health and healthcare organizations in the Washington, D.C./Baltimore metropolitan area, but you are not limited to applying to the pre-approved sites.
How can you find internship sites that have already been vetted for PHSC options credit?
Currently enrolled Public Health Science majors can request access to the list of approved PHSC internship sites. Within 7-10 day of submitting this form, you will receive an invitation to view the file via UMD Box. (You will need to log in to UMD Box with your UMD directory ID and and password to access the list.)
Please keep in mind, sites listed do not necessarily have a guaranteed open internship position for you. A listing means that the Public Health Science program has approved of the site and has a working relationship with the organization.
You may wish to search for an internship at a site that has not already been reviewed and approved by Public Health Science. The University Career Center@SPH can provide advice on how to get started searching for internships.
If you have an offer from an internship site that is not on the list of pre-approved PHSC internship contacts, you must submit an Internship Site Approval Request form before you can receive academic credit for the experience.
On the form, you will need to provide specific information about the internship site:
- Name of organization
- Mailing address and website of organization
- Site supervisor’s name and title
- Site supervisor’s phone number and email address
- Brief description of organization, including its mission, services, etc. (in your own words, not cut and pasted from a website.)
- A list of potential internship activities (as specific as possible.) These must align with the public health science program competencies.
Requesting Academic Credit for an Internship
To receive academic credit for an internship, students must be simultaneously enrolled in an approved internship course. Most PHSC majors enroll in PHSC399 for this credit, but they may request permission in advance from the PHSC Internship Coordinator to apply credits from another 300 or 400 level internship course towards PHSC options requirements.
In order to request PHSC options credit for an internship, students in the Public Health Science major must have:
- a minimum UMD cumulative GPA of 2.5
- a minimum number of credits earned by the start of the internship:
- College Park students: 45+ credits
- Shady Grove students: 75+ credits
- an internship offer from an organization that meets the criteria for Public Health Science credit as listed in Internship Requirements below
- applied for approval of PHSC internship credit by the posted deadline
- Employer/Organization is vetted and approved in advance by PHSC Internship Coordinator
- Intern’s work is supervised by a public health professional with a master’s degree or 5 years of experience in the field
- Work must be related to public health, and not clinical in nature
- Intern’s duties and responsibilities must be consistent with one or more Public Health Science competencies
Interns are expected to work in accordance with the number of credit hours they are enrolled in for their internship course.
- Students enrolled in PHSC399 for the summer are responsible for paying Summer Session Tuition and Fees for the corresponding number of credits.
- For internships, 45 hours = 1 credit
- 1 credit = 45 total work hours
- 2 credits = 90 total work hours
- 3 credits = 135 total work hours
- 4 credits = 180 total work hours
- 5 credits = 225 total work hours
- 6 credits = 270 or more total work hours
Students who have been employed at an organization for more than 3 months will not be eligible for an internship at that organization unless their job description has changed significantly to reflect a higher level of responsibility.
PHSC Internship credit cannot be granted on a retroactive basis.
PHSC399 Course Assignments
Students enrolled in PHSC399 complete the following assignments:
- In-person Orientation
- Signed Course Policy Agreement
- Mid-term evaluation by site supervisor
- Final evaluation by site supervisor
- Oral reflection presentation
- Written reflection paper
- Class engagement via Slack platform
Enrollment in PHSC399 is by permission only.
Students must complete all of the following steps before they can receive a registration stamp for the course.
- Accept an internship offer from an approved organization.
- Download and complete the PHSC Internship Contract.
- Have the completed PHSC Internship Contract reviewed and signed by the student's site supervisor.
- Submit the completed Internship Contract to the PHSC Internship Coordinator by the stated deadline.
Failure to secure an internship, receive approval, and submit a completed an internship contract by the deadline means a student will not be able to earn credit for the upcoming semester/summer.
The contract, completed by the intern and site supervisor, ensures that all parties understand the responsibilities of the position including a description of daily responsibilities or the nature of the project for the internship period.
The expected weekly hourly schedule for the intern is also required in the contract. The hourly schedule corresponds to the credits applied.
In order to be considered for internship credit, the student must submit the Internship Contract to the PHSC Internship Coordinator by the stated deadline.
- Summer: May 22
- Fall: August 10
- Spring: January 10
Students can download Adobe Creative Cloud software from UMD Terpware so you can view and complete the contract.
Download the Internship Contract for the term you will be working and enrolled in the PHSC399 course:
I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand.
Internship Resources for PHSC Students
- Internship Preparation Checklist for Public Health Science Majors (.pdf)
- Student Guide to Internships in Public Health Science (.pdf)
- UMD Career Center Terp Guide: Internship and Job Search
- UMD Career Center @ SPH
- PHSC Internship Contract (.pdf)