HDFS Internship Program

Information on the Internship Program

Placement Process

This section provides information on how to find and to secure a placement for your internship. Students are required to locate their internship placements with the guidance of the Internship Director. Students will find helpful tips on how to find an appropriate agency during their search. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to meet with the Internship Director to ensure an appropriate placement.

The following steps will aid in the student’s placement search, where some steps are discussed in HDF 477. Remember the completion of these tasks is the student’s responsibility.

Steps for Placement

  1. Complete Eligibility Application: The purpose of this application is for students to inform the Internship Director on their intentions and goals for their internship. Students will complete this application while enrolled in HDF 477.
  2. Schedule conference with Internship Director: After completing Eligibility Application, students should schedule an appointment with the Internship Director. The purpose of this conference is to assess the students status in locating a placement. It is best to schedule this meeting early in the semester while taking HDF 477, especially for students who are planning to take HDF 499 the following semester.NOTE: A student may meet with the Internship Director at ANY stage during her/his program.
  3. Prepare for informational interviews: After receiving approval from the Internship Director, students may begin contacting internship sites. In order to prepare for meeting with agency representatives students should:
    • First, think about the type of experience you want to achieve. Do you want to work with adolescents? Young children? Some interns want hands on experience where they are working directly with clients. Other interns want more of an administrative experience where they work “behind the scenes”. While other interns want a little of both.
    • Next, do some preliminary research on the agencies you want to visit. You can find information on the web or by visiting the agency and collecting brochures and pamphlets. You should do this BEFORE scheduling a meeting with an agency representative.
    • Last, schedule meetings to interview potential site supervisors until placed. Students are encouraged to interview at least three agencies before deciding on a placement. Click here for tips/guidelines in contacting your placement.
    • Click here for more information on finding internships.
  4. Conduct informational interviews: After researching, students should schedule a meeting with an agency representative. The following items are helpful tips on how to prepare for the interview:
    • Prior to the meeting, print a copy of the Site Supervisor Letter, which provides information on the requirements of the class, roles and responsibilities of the site supervisor, and the expectations of the internship.
    • During the meeting, students should:
      • Inquire about particular internship application procedures and expectations.
      • Discuss responsibilities of all parties and the activities you will be engaging in during the semester.
      • Ask general questions about the process of selecting interns. For example, the time frame for selecting an intern or how many interns they will accept.
    • Remember to send thank you letters!
    • When an internship is offered, respond to that offer immediately with a phone call and either a letter of acceptance or a letter of regret.
    • Click here for further information on what to look for in a supervisor.
  5. Confirm placement with the Internship Director: All placements must be approved by the Internship Director. Students must complete the Internship Application (found online) once they have been accepted by an agency. The Internship Director will contact the agency and will update the student on the status of her/his application. See checklist for deadlines.
  6. Schedule follow-up meetings: Some supervisors may want to schedule follow-up meetings to discuss your internship further. The following are some topics that you can discuss during these meetings:
    • Discuss beginning and ending dates.
    • Discuss where you will be interning and the tentative times. Many site supervisors like to have an idea about the hours that you may be interning. Let them know that your schedule could change based on your class schedule (if applicable).
    • Have possible objectives that you want to accomplish. Remember that these need to be flexible because your supervisor may feel that you need to accomplish some other goal during your internship. Additionally, the agency may not be able to fulfill that goal or it may not be appropriate for you.
    • Find out if they provide Professional Liability Insurance.
  7. Register for HDF 499: Students will be notified through email of the registration process during preregistration the semester prior to their internship.