Receive academic credit for professional certifications; Our MSA program recognizes a variety of professional certifications, such as PHR, SHRM-CP, PMP, and CAPM. Please visit MSA's Certification-to-Credit webpage.
Gain practical experience
MSA 690 Internship
The MSA 690 Internship is a 100-300-hour experience (1-3 credits). You must be halfway through your MSA program and have successfully completed MSA 601, MSA 603, and MSA 604 in order to register for MSA 690.
Why consider an internship?
If you have no previous professional work experience, an internship experience starts the development of a professional attitude, teaches problem resolution, advances your skills in analyzing and synthesizing information, improves your communication skills, enhances time management skills, and so much more. If your MSA concentration is in a field that is new to you, an internship may open the door to new employment opportunities. An internship builds your resume and increases your marketability.
What happens during the MSA 690 Internship?
The internship experience will vary from organization to organization. As part of the MSA 690 internship opportunity, you'll work with an institutional supervisor at your internship location. You have an introduction to the daily activities of management and administration in a real-world setting (meetings, projects, data input/analysis, and so forth). Successfully applying what you have learned in the classroom is the key to an effective internship. At the midpoint of the internship and at the end, you will conduct a self-evaluation and share it with your supervisor as well as the MSA internship coordinator. Your supervisor will also evaluate you at these two times.
On the academic side, your internship coordinator will require the submission of a weekly journal. This journal documents your activities and provides for reflection on the connection between your coursework and the internship experience. The internship coordinator will review the midpoint and end evaluations. In addition, the internship coordinator will connect with you to set up a site visit with you and your supervisor.
Where to start?
Begin looking for internship opportunities visit CMU’s Career Development Center. Through Handshake, make an appointment for a resume review. Take advantage of the mock interview process. Check out other resources, such as such as Pearson Pathways or Indeed.com.
Talk with your professors, your advisor, and the MSA Internship Coordinator.
Read through the MSA 690 Handbook. Use the checklist.
When you talk with a potential supervisor at an internship site, they may have questions. You can provide them with the link to this webpage and the MSA 690 Internship Handbook for Supervisors. Provide the agency supervisor checklist.
Internship agreements and paperwork MUST be in place by the following deadlines:
- July 15 for the fall semester
- October 15 for the spring semester
- March 15 for the summer semester
Prior to starting your internship, these items must be completed
- Internship offer letter
- Affiliation agreement, the MSA internship coordinator will determine if an agreement is necessary.
- International students must have CPT (Curricular Practical Training) approval. The offer letter will be used as documentation. The MSA internship coordinator is the "approver." Apply for approval through the Office of Global Engagement.
The MSA 690 Internship course is typically limited to main campus students, although exceptions for online students may be considered on a case by case basis.
Internship success tips
- Begin talking with your supervisor prior to starting the internship. Make sure you are prepared to hit the ground running.
- Many organizations can provide technology for interns, however, check whether you need to bring a laptop or any other items.
- Talk to your internship supervisor at least weekly. Ask for a weekly meeting to ask questions, get feedback, and develop your relationship.
- Set goals with your supervisor.
- Ask for clarification so you know exactly what is expected.
- Keep busy.
- Keep your workspace neat and organized.
- Take notes.
- Be professional in your work attire, in writing/answering e-mails, and in face-to-face/virtual communication.