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Frequently Asked Questions

Promoting an Internship

Hosting an Intern

Current Community Partners

I need help with my business, can I hire an unpaid intern for this?
Successful internship experiences should combine mentoring, training, and purposeful project assignments. Keep in mind the time, energy, and resources needed to host an intern. Businesses and organizations looking for help should consider short term employment with the CSUSM Career Center

How do I promote my internship opportunity?
Organizations wishing to promote an internship must apply for a University Community Partnership with the CSUSM Office of Internships. A partnership is necessary to ensure students are provided with a safe learning site and learning-based internship opportunities. A Request to Initiate Partnership Form must be completed for all organizations wishing to host an intern or promote their internship opportunities. A University Community Partnership Agreement will be sent to your organization upon review and approval. Your internship description will be posted within 48 hours of receiving an agreement. 

When is the best time to promote my internship?
While internships are year round, it is recommended you submit a Request to Initiate Partnership form (for new community partners) or New Internship Opportunity Form (for existing community partners) 4-6 weeks prior to the start of the semester. Fall semesters begin mid-August, Spring semesters begin mid-January, and Summer sessions vary from June-July.

Are there other ways I can promote my internship?
Community partner events are held on campus throughout the academic year. In addition, an Annual Internship Fair is hosted every spring semester. Announcements and invitations are sent to all current community partners via email.

How do I post my opportunity in the database?
Currently, the database is only accessible to CSUSM students and faculty. The Office of Internships will post your approved internship opportunity within 48 hours of receiving a signed agreement.

Can I provide academic credit?
The University is the only entity that can administer academic credit for internship. Some students are eligible to receive credit based on their major department and the appropriateness of the internship for the course. A list of internship courses is available for reference. 

Do I need to pay the intern?
The U.S. Department of Labor has defined parameters for unpaid internships. Students completing non-academic internships at businesses/ for-profit organizations must be paid at least minimum wage. Compensation for academic internships is highly encouraged to assist the student offset the cost of taking the internship course. 

How many hours should I provide?
Credit internship courses will require students to complete 90-120 hours per semester. Students should not be completing more than 20 hours per week for an unpaid internship. 

I already have a student selected, do I still need to become a community partner?
Organizations hosting students are required to establish a university community partnership. This is to ensure the student is being provided with a safe and an academic-oriented opportunity. Furthermore, it promotes ongoing collaboration between community partners and the university. 

Do I need to fill out additional paperwork upon hiring the intern?
No additional paperwork is needed on behalf of the community partner once the agreement has been finalized. The student is responsible for creating a placement in the internships database. An internship placement confirmation will automatically be sent to the internship site supervisor. The student's faculty or instructor may request additional forms to be completed. 

How do I track and report the student's time?
If the internship will be taken for credit/a course fulfillment, the student is responsible for tracking their time. The student's faculty or instructor may request

How do I update my information on the database?
Currently, the database is only accessible to students and faculty. Please contact us with your requested changes at internships@csusm.edu and we'll be happy to assist you.

How do I promote an additional internship opportunity?
Please use the New Internship Opportunity Form. Your opportunity will be reviewed and if approved, posted on the database within 48 hours.

How long will my internship be posted?
The internship opportunity will be available as an ongoing basis unless otherwise indicated.