Guidelines for Posting Internships
Thank you for your interest in recruiting Davidson College students for internships!
Any questions about our process for posting internships through the Office of Career Services may be directed to Ashley Neff, Assistant Director for Internships, at email@example.com or 704-894-2678.
Employers interested in posting internships can do so directly on WildcatLink. Your position will be kept in our pending file until we approve it. We may contact you soon after you post to ask you to clarify certain aspects of the position description.
Criteria for an Experience to Be Defined as an Internship
All internships posted at Davidson must meet the internship guidelines set forth by the National Association for Colleges and Employers.
To ensure that an experience-whether it is a traditional internship or one conducted remotely or virtually-is educational, and thus eligible to be considered a legitimate internship by the NACE definition, all the following criteria must be met:
- The experience must be an extension of the classroom: a learning experience that provides for applying the knowledge gained in the classroom. It must not be simply to advance the operations of the employer or be the work that a regular employee would routinely perform.
- The skills or knowledge learned must be transferable to other employment settings.
- The experience has a defined beginning and end, and a job description with desired qualifications.
- There are clearly defined learning objectives related to the student's professional goals.
- There is supervision by a professional with expertise and educational and/or professional background in the field of the experience.
- There is routine feedback by the experienced supervisor.
- There are resources, equipment, and facilities provided by the host employer that support learning objectives/goals.
All position descriptions for internships submitted to Davidson College must demonstrate that the above criteria are met.
We also highly recommend reviewing the NACE 15 Best Practices for Internship Programs, particularly if this is the first time you are offering an internship.
Due to the academic and extracurricular demands of the school year, most Davidson students are interested in pursuing internships (both full-time and part-time) during the summer. However, we encourage postings from employers for all semesters (fall, spring, and summer) if the employer is within driving distance (45 minutes or less) of Davidson College. Our students typically carry full course loads while pursuing internships during the academic year, so we recommend that any part-time internships you post be no more than 15 hours of work per week.
We encourage employers posting summer internships to get their position(s) posted with us by February for the best chance of reaching the largest number of qualified students.
Posting Unpaid Internships
We encourage employers - particularly those in the private sector - to pay interns whenever possible. As many students focus their search on paid positions out of necessity, offering paid internships often results in a larger, more diverse, and more qualified pool of applicants.
If your organization is considering posting unpaid internships through Davidson, you must confirm that those internships meet the above criteria for an experience to be defined as an internship. You should make an effort to detail what the intern will learn from the experience - in other words, articulate the educational value of the internship - as you are constructing your position description.
Private sector employers should also be familiar with the United States Department of Labor guidelines for legally offering unpaid internships. This fact sheet produced by the United States Department of Labor provides general information to help determine whether interns must be paid the minimum wage and overtime under the Fair Labor Standards Act for the services that they provide to "for-profit" private sector employers.
While Davidson does offer a mechanism for granting academic credit for unpaid internships, this credit is only available if it is required by the employer. Employers who mandate academic credit must still meet our criteria for high-quality internships as well as the Department of Labor's criteria for unpaid internships.
The majority of internships posted at Davidson are traditional internships, where student interns work at the same physical location as their supervisor and have a safe and specific work space. If you are interested in posting a virtual internship at Davidson, you must indicate this in the Job Title (for example, Social Media Virtual Intern). All virtual internship position descriptions must meet the NACE criteria for internships in addition to the below criteria for virtual internships. We will review descriptions carefully to see that both sets of criteria are met before approving the posting.
Criteria for Virtual Internships
- The internship site must use some type of online project management tool, such as Google Docs or Basecamp, so that work is stored in the "cloud" and not on a personal computer.
- The internship includes a regular e-mail report (weekly, at a minimum) where the student provides information such as hours worked, challenges or problems encountered, and results obtained, and asks any questions that he or she may have.
- The internship includes a weekly virtual meeting on Skype or a similar technology (highly preferred); if this meeting is impossible, then phone conversations are expected.
- For local virtual internships (the site is not far from Davidson, but you are allowing the student to work from campus), you must meet with the student in a public place regularly throughout the internship.
Local Nonprofit Internships
Internships with nonprofits in the Lake Norman and greater Charlotte area will be posted by both our office and the Center for Civic Engagement. The Center for Civic Engagement will be your primary contact. Please send position descriptions and direct questions to Dr. Stacey Riemer, Associate Dean of Students and Director of Civic Engagement, at firstname.lastname@example.org / 704-894-2420.