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What Are Internships?

Biology internships are designed to offer you the opportunity to obtain hands-on experience and to link your classroom studies with the world of work. UCD students have participated in internships in forensics, dentistry, cancer research and botany with a host of employers, such as:

  • Alameda Veterinary Clinic

  • Bluff Lake Nature Center

  • Colorado Wildlife Federation

  • Denver Botanic Gardens

  • Denver Health Medical Center

  • Denver Office of the Medical Examiner

  • Denver Police Crime Laboratory Bureau

  • Denver Zoo College Internship Program

  • Kids in Need of Dentistry (KIND)


Internships = Better Jobs, Bigger Salaries 

According to a survey by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, in 2005 employers reported that:

  • 88.5% of new hires had internship or co-op experience.

  • Candidates with internship experience were offered 6.5% higher salaries.

  • 63% of employers attending the UCD Career Expo would prefer to hire students with internship experience than students without.

  • Overall, U.S. employers reported plans to increase their intern hires by 9.8%.

Whether you are looking for a job or applying to professional school after graduation, internships are the best way to add to your marketability or viability. An internship can complement your resume or personal statement and add substance to your answers in interviews. Participating in an internship can also help you clarify and define your career goals. "Trying on" an internship can assist you in determining if you are on the right career path.


How to Find an Internship 

  • Meet with an internship advisor at the Experiential Learning Center (ELC) to find an internship that is right for you. Every semester there are numerous internship possibilities waiting for you to review and apply to get you started.

  • Meet with the faculty sponsor for the Department of Integrative Biology, Dr. Laurel Beck to discuss your interest in a biologically relevant internship and/or ensure that the internship you have selected is appropriate and can be pursued for credit.


The Internship Process

MPORTANT INFORMATION for all students trying to obtain an internship through the Department of Integrative Biology:

Obtaining an internship can be a lengthy process. This process will take anywhere from 6-12 weeks prior to the start of the internship and for some competitive internships the process may need to begin 1-2 semesters before the start of the desired internship. It is up to you, the student, to ensure that you give yourself enough time to complete all that is needed to obtain an internship.

This process will include several appointments and much thought, time and effort on your behalf. This process will include, but is not limited to, the following aspects:

  1. Scheduling an appointment with an ELC advisor

  2. Finding an appropriate internship

  3. Composing a current resume and cover letter

  4. Sending the resume and cover letter to all desired internship site supervisors

  5. Interviewing with the site supervisor (if selected)

  6. Completing the corresponding paperwork (with the ELC, the Biology Department and the site supervisor)

  7. Fulfilling all of the training requirements set by the ELC


Necessary Appointments to Obtain Internship 

  1. ELC ADVISOR: Please note that your first meeting with the ELC advisor will require a full hour to complete. There are also additional appointments with the ELC advisor(s) that may take 30 or more minutes per each appointment. Training is also required.

  2. INTERNSHIP SITE SUPERVISOR: You must meet with your site supervisor several times prior to starting the internship. Most likely the first meeting will consist of an interview in which you, the student, will be interviewed for the desired internship position. If you are selected, you must meet with your site supervisor at least one more time, if not more, to discuss your duties and responsibilities as an intern student. You must complete the second page of the Learning Agreement, which is a detailed description of the Internship Duties/Responsibilities and Internship Objectives, in the presence of your site supervisor so that your Learning Agreement is accurate and reflects the duties that you and your site supervisor have agreed upon for the semester.

  3. BIOLOGY DEPARTMENT FACULTY SPONSOR: You must also meet with Dr. Laurel Beck, the faculty sponsor for the Biology Department, to ensure that the internship you have selected is appropriate and can receive credit from the Biology Department.


Learning Agreement 

You must obtain three signatures, in addition to your own, for the Learning Agreement, as listed below.

  1. Site Supervisor: you, the student, should sign the Learning Agreement in the presence of your site supervisor just after you have completed the "Internship Duties and Responsibilities" together.

  2. Department of Integrative Biology Faculty Sponsor, Dr. Laurel Beck

  3. The appropriate ELC Advisor.


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