Undergraduate Forms

 University of Massachusetts Amherst Academic Calendar 2024-2025

Biotechnology Research Contract

Please complete this electronic contract with a Faculty Sponsor. The Faculty Sponsor must email the completed contract to mjschnei [at] umass.edu (Mary Schneider) to enroll the student.

ANIMLSCI 291C - Biotech Research -Cell & Molec I         1 credit
ANIMLSCI 291M - Biotech Research-Animal Models I      1 credit
ANIMLSCI 391C - Biotech Research-Cell & Molec II         2 credits
ANIMLSCI 391M - Biotech Research-Animal Models II     2 credits
ANIMLSCI 491C - Biotech Research-Cell & Molec III        3 credits
ANIMLSCI 491M - Biotech Research-Animal Models III    3 credits

Internships and Practica  

Internships and Practica should be registered as ANIMLSCI 298, 398 or 498 through Handshake. In order to enroll in a ’98 practicum course, students should

1. Identify an outside internship sponsor and a VASCI faculty sponsor. There are departmental, CNS, and Career Services databases to help you identify an outside internship sponsor. Talk to your outside internship sponsor about your work schedule so you will know how many hours per week you are working and thus how many credits you can request (i.e. in the fall or spring, 1 credit = 3 hours per week over 15 weeks for a total of 45 hours). The student and sponsoring faculty member discuss the project, the appropriate number of credits  and the required academic product to be produced, which is usually a journal documenting the hours worked and what skills or lessons were learned, or a paper on a related topic.

2. Sign up for internship/practica courses (e.g. ANIMLSCI 298, 398, or 498) by Logging into

Note: Students with less than 45 credits or a GPA below 2.0. must complete and submit the Academic Dean's Approval Form

3. Sign in with your UMass user name and password
Click on Career Center (upper right)
Click on the box under the UMass banner labeled "Experiences-> Track your internship or co-op experiences"
Click on the blue box labeled Request an Experience or the Request an Experience text at top left.
*Experience Type- Undergraduate Internship for Credit  (this pulls up the appropriate contract).
Select a Term. (Example - Spring 2021) Please note: If you are earning credit (Internship), then choose just one semester.

4. In the contract, Fill in *required information, including Employer/Sponsor contact info, (Note that your Employer is the company name, not the name of your supervisor.) If you do not yet have your supervisor’s contact information, in each of those fields also put in this phrase: “TBD – will notify the Field Experience Program staff at internships [at] umass.edu after I begin working.”
Faculty Sponsor and Student Information
If you do not yet know what your address will be while you are working, put in the following phrase: “TBD – will notify the Field Experience Program staff at internships [at] umass.edu after I begin working.”
Learning Objectives
Work schedule- must be enough to justify credits requested
Academic product - it can be a journal or PowerPoint documenting your hours and lessons learned, or a paper on a related topic.
Note - For most people, ANIMLSCI 398 is appropriate. You can take up to 18 credits total under this class designation. Most people take 1-3 credits at a time. Only 18 credits total of any x98 class count towards the 120 credits needed for graduation.
The contract seems long, but if it doesn't have an asterisk, you can leave it blank, except for anything pertaining to items 1-5 above. For example, you don't need to put down the department or how much you are being paid, if anything. You do need to enter the start and end dates, and your work schedule in order to justify the number of credits you're asking for. (Contact Mary Lysakowski in the Career Development Hub at mklysako [at] umass.edu with any questions.)

5. UMass requires students to sign a Field Experience Risk Acknowledgement Form.  This form is housed in the Field Experience Section on Handshake, and students can access the form in the Resources section and then upload the signed form.
If you have to attach any forms or files (such as signed Field Experience Risk Acknowledgement Form or Offer Letter), then once you have filled in all of the information and answered all of the questions, on the last page, hit the Save as Draft button instead of the Submit button.
Scroll down the left side of the page and click on the New Attachment button.
Follow the prompts – Name each document (Offer Letter, Field Experience Risk Acknowledgement Form, etc.), and then Click on the Choose File button and select the document from your files.
Click on the Create Attachment button on the right. Do this for each document you are attaching.
After you have attached any files, click on Edit at the top right on the page, and then go through page by page to the last page to hit the Submit button.
Please note that if you accidentally Submit the experience contract before attaching required files, you can go back into Edit mode again and attach them.
If you run into issues with adding an attachment, please email separate pdf files of your signed forms to internships [at] umass.edu so they can be attached for you.

6. After you submit your contract information, Career Services reviews it and will email you if there's a problem that needs to be fixed. Career Services generates a contract and sends a link to the VASCI faculty mentor and to the department head for approval before it’s routed for enrollment by a VASCI staff member, or UWW in the summer. Paying for a 1 credit practicum/internship course during the summer (~$240) will give you liability coverage through UMass. Some veterinary practices require interns to have liability coverage and this is much cheaper than paying through your parents’ home insurance plan. You will also be covered for liability during the fall and spring semesters.

7. Enjoy your internship!

8. Submit your academic project to your Faculty Sponsor at the end of the semester, or at the end of the second summer session, in time for the Faculty Sponsor to assign the final grade.

The Veterinary & Animal Sciences Department strongly encourages students to participate in internships in order to achieve the diverse veterinary medical related experience required for a competitive veterinary medical school or graduate school application and to explore career options. The 298, 398, and 498 practicum courses are a mechanism for students to earn credit for these internship experiences. Each course is graded pass/fail and can be taken for 1-18 credits; the total amount of internship credits applied toward the 120 credits required for graduation is limited to 18 credits. The department maintains a list of local and state-wide veterinary clinics, biotech companies, farms, zoos, animal shelters, animal trainers and behaviorists, and wildlife centers where Animal Science and Pre-Veterinary Science students have interned in the past. The College of Natural Sciences maintains a database of completed internships so you can see where other students have already interned.

Students interested in working in a Massachusetts life sciences company may pursue the Life Sciences Internship Challenge from the end of their sophomore year to one year after their graduation with a B.S. or M.S. degree. The Life Sciences Internship Challenge is a workforce development program focused on enhancing the talent pipeline for life sciences companies in Massachusetts and offers part-time or full-time paid internships all year long.

Students enrolled in a ’98 course are covered for liability by the UMass Amherst General Liability (GL) plan. Liability insurance covers any accidental damage a student may cause at an internship site, such as damage to property or to another person at the internship site. It does not cover injury to the student, which is covered by the student’s health insurance policy. Some human direct care internships (e.g. nursing or psychology) may require additional Direct Care coverage or malpractice coverage. If an internship sponsor requires evidence of liability insurance coverage, the student enrolled in a ’98 course should send the name, email address, company name and mailing address of the internship sponsor to Mary Lysakowski (mklysako [at] umass.edu), the Field Experience Program Manager at UMass Amherst’s Career Development Hub. The UMass Treasurer’s Office will then generate a certificate of liability coverage and email it directly to the internship sponsor.

During the fall and spring semesters, students can register for up to 19 credits and can apply to the CNS academic dean for a credit overload approval based on their GPA. We encourage students to register for at least 1 credit for their internships so that they are covered for liability by the UMass Amherst General Liability (GL) plan.

Independent Study

Please use the Biotechnology Research Contract above to register for lab based independent research. 

Please use the Independent Study Form for literature or data review and analysis or other projects that do not fit in the ’91 Biotechnology Research course structure. ANIMLSCI 296, 396 and 496 courses may be taken under the direct supervision of a UMass faculty sponsor.  A letter grade and course title “Independent study” is listed on the student’s transcript. ANIMLSCI 596 is a graduate-level course; generally this level is used by upper level undergraduates but can be used by beginning graduate students. Products to be generated in the 296, 396 and 496 courses are determined by the sponsoring faculty and agreed to by the student. Examples of appropriate independent study outputs include: papers, posters, oral reports or a portfolio of work. A 1 credit independent study course averages 3 hours of work per week over 15 weeks of the fall or spring semester, or 45 hours total per semester. Credits may vary from 1 to 6, or 3 (1 credit) to 18 (6 credits) hours of work per week. The Faculty Sponsor must email the completed Independent Study Form to mschneider [at] vasci.umass.edu (Mary Schneider)  to enroll student.

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