Internships

All internships need approval from the Undergraduate Program Director, Dr. Gloria DiFulvio. You need a minimum of 60 credits and 2.5 GPA to do an internship off campus. Students complete internships in various locations, including UMass, Western Massachusetts, hometowns, and abroad. 

How Do I Find An Internship?

  • Public Health Newsletters, which are sent to your UMass email on a weekly basis
  • Check the SPHHS Workforce Development page for internships, volunteer experiences, and other job opportunities. The site is updated frequently – stop back often!
  • APHA Website: Scroll down to “Public Health Career Mart.” No membership necessary.
  • Career Connect and Career Services
  • LinkedIn- Create your own LinkedIn account, join public health groups, grow your network.
  • Idealist- Find volunteer opportunities, nonprofit jobs, and internships focused on social change.
  • SOPHAS Connect- Find jobs and internships in health education and promotion
  • For a more extensive  list of other public health job and internship resources, see the Now What? handout in the far right download column
  • Office of Undergraduate and Research Studies (OURS)- Complete and submit the advice form on their website. They will help you find internships and research projects that align with your interests. 
  • Find your own (especially good if you are looking for one over the summer in your hometown).  Networking is very important. Your hometown, parents, friends of the family, local hospitals, public health departments, and social service organizations are all good sources for internship sites as well as informational interviews and career “shadowing” experiences. Many people are interested in mentoring and supporting young people in the field. It is important to make personal connections.

When should I do an internship?

Internships can occur either during the regular semester or over the summer. There are some important logistics to take into account:

  • Internships taken during the school year are part of your regular tuition.
  • Internships that you complete over the summer and wish to receive credit for must be paid for separately, through Continuing and Professional Education. Financial aid may be possible. Check with the Financial Aid Office. To receive credit, you need to fill out an additional form from CPE that the Undergraduate Program Director or Advisor must sign.
  • If you are not looking to receive credit, you can sign up for the internship on your own. Even if you do not receive academic credit, it will strengthen your resume and understanding of the field.

For some students, paying for the credits over the summer makes their class schedule more feasible (lighter credit load). It is good to think about the different options and what works best for your learning style.

How do I get pre-approval for internships and sign up for the credits on SPIRE?

Fill out the internship application, sign and have the supervisor sign the form, and give it to Dr. DiFulvio (Arnold 302) for review. Dr. DiFulvio will contact you about the approval process. If you are doing a summer internship, you need to fill out an additional form from CPE and get a signature from Dr. DiFulvio. Once you’ve received approval, the program director will be in touch with your supervisor, as well as send out an email reminder about the final paper due date.

How many hours count for one credit?

Internship credits are calculated by the number of hours spent at the internship site each week during a regular 13 week semester (fall and spring University calendar).

  • 3 credits of internship = 125 hours total: 8-9 hours per week over 13 weeks plus time for coursework
  • 2 credits of internship = 83 hours total: 5-6 hours per week over 13 weeks plus time for coursework
  • 1 credit of internship = 42 hours total: 3 hours per week over 13 weeks plus time for coursework

How many internship credits can I do?

Credits for internships can range from one to nine credits. However, the norm is three credits per semester, with no more than nine total credits allowed for internships and independent study work in the major. A total of 15 internship and independent study credits is allowed for your entire undergraduate career. These credits go toward the Public Health electives (300-599) or Collateral field. Approval is needed from the Program Director for taking over three internship credits a semester.

How much does it cost to do an internship over the summer?

Credits during the summer are paid for separately through CPE and are $195.00 per credit.