Internship Guidelines

Environmental Studies Internship Program Guidelines


An academic internship is a form of experiential education that integrates knowledge and theory learned in the classroom with practical application and skill development in a professional setting.…This work/learning arrangement is overseen by a faculty or staff member of an educational institution and by a designated employee of an organization. The internship is usually the length or equivalent of an academic term, may be part-time or full-time, paid or unpaid. An integral component of the experience that distinguishes it from other types of work is one or more forms of structured and deliberate reflection contained within learning agendas or objectives.–KU Career Center website

Environmental Studies students can participate in an internship program without enrolling in EVRN 490. However, academic credits earned in EVRN 490 can be used to satisfy Junior/Senior elective requirements for the major. Especially for an unpaid internship, enrolling in EVRN 490 also provides documentation and a formal structure that can make the experience more valuable to you. EVRN 490 is graded Credit/No Credit.

Enrolling in EVRN 490

EVRN 490 is limited to Environmental Studies majors with an overall GPA of 2.5 or higher. To enroll in the course, a student must receive consent from the program director and must have Junior standing when the internship begins. The structure of the course requires that your internship experience lasts approximately the same dates as a normal academic semester. If you’re uncertain about your eligibility, it’s a good idea to check with the Environmental Studies academic adviser. Then, follow these steps:

  1. Select an internship that involves supervised practical experience in an environmental area which interests you. Visit the Environmental Studies Program website for links to online internship listings and suggestions on effective ways to find and successfully apply for an internship.
  2. When a sponsor agrees to accept you for an internship, decide how many credit hours of EVRN 490 to enroll in. You’ll need to work a total of at least 40 hours for each credit. For example, to earn 3 credits during spring or fall semester you’ll need to plan on working an average of at least 8 hours/week for the 15 week term (8 x 15 = 120 hours total). As an undergraduate student you can receive a maximum of 8 credit hours through internships. Ask the Internship Coordinator for help if you’re not sure how many credit hours to select.
  3. Complete the Environmental Studies Internship Program Application Form (available on the Environmental Studies Program website). As part of the application, you’ll need to get a copy of your current ARTS form. Your internship supervisor will also need to fill out and sign the Proposed Internship Work Opportunity form, which you will also sign. Submit all of these to the Internship Coordinator, who will obtain final approval from the Director of Environmental Studies.
    *The amount of credits that a student will receive for their internships will be signed and agreed upon on the Application Form. Discuss the proper amount with the Internship Coordinator and your internship supervisor.
    *Once a student has enrolled in the course, those hours may not be changed if the student works more than originally anticipated. Any hours worked beyond the agreed upon anticipated hours will only be for the students’ benefit.
  4. Once approval is granted, obtain a permission number to enroll from the Environmental Studies Department office ( ). You must enroll in EVRN 490 before the last date to add a section for the term you’ll be working as an intern. Pay attention to enrollment deadlines!

    *Students may not add the internship course past the university deadline for “last day to add”.

EVRN 490 requirements

As part of your internship application, you and your sponsor will have agreed on expectations and a general schedule for your internship work. You will have some additional EVRN 490 assignments during the term, which will be available online through the course Blackboard website. You are responsible for checking Blackboard regularly to ensure that you complete these assignments in a timely manner. The major assignments are:

  • Statement of learning objectives (“Learning objectives” are your strategic plan for what you intend to accomplish during your internship. A written plan helps you direct, manage, and reflect upon the learning process.)
  • Prepare/revise your resume. (The university career center,, has resources to help you prepare an effective resume, including a review service for KU students.)
  • Internship blog. (Periodically during the semester you and other students enrolled in EVRN 490 will be required to respond to a question or comment on another student’s answer posted on the course Blackboard site. The purpose is to encourage sharing and reflection on your internship experiences.)
  • Weekly update on work hours. (This is intended to help you maintain a regular record of your work hours, if yours is an unpaid internship and you aren’t formally reporting them to your supervisor.)
  • • At the end of the internship, you must submit a final report detailing your internship experience.
    o Describe what you actually did during your internship; describe your accomplishments (ideally, assemble a portfolio to document and demonstrate what you did)
    o Reflect on how well you met each of your learning objectives: for each objective you met, explain what you did; if you met other objectives (not in your original plan), explain those too; if there were objectives you didn’t meet, explain why not.
  • Finally, your internship supervisor must provide a final report on your work performance. A report form is available on the Blackboard site that you can give or email to your supervisor. Your supervisor doesn’t have to use the form; but the report should include at least these items:
  1. How many hours you worked.
  2. What you did during the internship (be specific as possible).
  3. How well you did it (their evaluation of your actual job performance).

Your supervisor can email the report to: (The email subject line should read: “Internship report for ”)

Or a paper copy can be mailed to:
The Environmental Studies Program
attn: Internship Coordinator
University of Kansas
1460 Jayhawk Blvd., Rm. 252
Lawrence, KS 66045

EVRN 490 grading At the end of the term, the Internship Coordinator will assemble your assignments and supervisor’s report for the EVRN 490 instructor of record (currently Professor J. Christopher Brown, Director of the Environmental Studies Program) who will review them and assign a grade of Credit or No Credit.

If you have any questions, please address them to the Internship Coordinator: Environmental Studies Internship Coordinator Snow Hall, Rm. 258