Steps for Internships, Co-ops, and Experiential Education
Please note: Steps 9 and 11 are strictly for international students on an F-1 visa.
- Student researches University catalog to identify if experience-based learning possibilities are eligible for academic credit in their department.
- Employer promotes job/internship/co-op opportunity and student expresses interest.
- Student carefully reads UMass Lowell co-op/internship/other contract/agreement form (if applicable) and, if agrees to all conditions, signs the form in all appropriate places
- Student asks faculty member if the opportunity has sufficient content related to academics to be acceptable.
- Faculty member checks to make certain the student is academically in good standing and qualified.
- Faculty member clearly explains any special requirements their academic department requires (i.e. course enrollment, learning contract, final paper, etc.)
- Faculty member reads and signs appropriate form(s) with their approval.
- Student applies and interviews for opportunity.
- If it seems likely they will be made an offer, international student (on an F-1 visa) goes to international student advisor to make certain that they qualify for curricular practical training (i.e., have already taken one academic year of courses in the U.S.; are enrolled as full-time student; visa is in active status, are eligible for optional and/or curricular practical training). International student advisor will clearly explain that, unless this experience is required by their academic program, F-1 visa holders may work NO MORE THAN 20 hours per week during the academic semesters. During summer and winter sessions, however, this restriction does not exist.
- If Employer makes offer, student clearly explains any special or unique requirements of their academic department and then asks employer to read and sign form(s) in all appropriate places.
- International student goes to international student advisor with all signed forms and their I-20. Once permission to work has been granted and all forms signed by international student advisor, student may begin their work period.
- Student brings all completed forms to the Career & Co-op Center or their faculty sponsor/advisor for record keeping and distribution, if applicable.
- If academic credit is being awarded for this experience, then the student must formally register for the class using the correct course number. In most cases, for online registration a permission number or special course registration override code must be provided by the faculty member.