The Department's innovative internship program prepares students to work as professionals in the field of recreation, parks, and leisure services administration. The distinct contribution of the internship is the combined academic preparation and field experience which enables students to develop professional behavior and apply theory to practice during the 30 week/30 credit hour (RPL 320) experience.
The undergraduate internship is intended to provide students with a comprehensive experience, of their choice, that covers all possible aspects of significant professional experience at one placement site for thirty weeks, or two different placement sites for fifteen weeks each. The placement site chosen by the student (either from our extensive site files, or a site of the student's preference) must be approved beforehand by the academic advisor and the director of the Center for Leisure Services who oversees the internship program. During the internship experience the student is closely monitored by an assigned department faculty member to ascertain that degree requirements and specific goals are attained. An important factor in guaranteeing a successful internship is matching the career goals of students with the human and physical resources of the facility.
Internship Site Database
For the students that are looking for an internship, the Community, Commercial, and Outdoor and Therapeutic Recreation database is available online.
View the intern site database page here
Prior to starting an internship, the student must:
- Have completed all on-campus coursework.
- Have performed or logged 180 to 500 clock hours of experience within the field of recreation in either a paid or volunteer capacity, with at least half the experience hours performed within the concentration of choice, (i.e. therapeutic, community, commercial, outdoor).
- Complete the RPL 310 (pre-internship course -- which is a pre-requisite) no more than two semesters before the actual internship experience is to commence.
We encourage students to make the major decisions about their internship placements themselves with consultation and guidance from their faculty advisor and the Director of the Center for Leisure Services.
Courses & Fieldwork
Pre-Internship Course (RPL 310)
This class involves the preparation of students for their internship placement. In class, students learn the philosophy and procedures of the internship program. Professional development assignments will enhance each student’s internship preparation, as well as their site selection.
The Internship Program (RPL 320)
The Department’s innovative internship program prepares students to work as professionals in the field of recreation, parks, and leisure services administration. The distinct contribution of the internship is the combined academic preparation and field experience which enables students to develop professional behavior and apply theory to practice during the 30 week/30 credit hour internship experience.
The Fieldwork Program (RPL 314, RPL 315, RPL 316, RPL 317, RPL 318, RPL 319)
The Center of Leisure Services coordinates a short-term work experience called fieldwork. This entitles any student, regardless of their major, placed at recreational facilities to concurrently enroll for one to ten credits based on his or her job-related recreation experience. This credit offering can be applied to a non-recreation major’s general elective requirement. Recreation majors may take up to a maximum of four fieldwork credits which can be applied to their major. CLS additionally coordinates fieldwork experiences through the Disney Theme Parks & Resorts College Program.
Intern Supervisor Nomination Instructions (PDF download)