The Office of Internships does not oversee enrollment or course requirements. To obtain more information, contact your major adviser or course instructor. For additional information regarding internships that will be taken for a course, see the “credit internships” section on the CSUSM Office of Internships Website.
Internships take advanced preparation. Consider the following questions: What are your specific career interest? What do you want to gain from the internship? What type of organization are you interested in? Refer to the CSUSM Intern Handbook for more information. Consulting with your major adviser or a CSUSM career adviser is strongly recommended to assist with additional planning. For additional information about securing an internship, see the credit and non-credit internship sections on our website.
To avoid a conflict of interest, students may not intern with family members.
The Office of Internships will allow internship hours to be completed at a student’s current workplace under the following circumstances: Students must obtain approval from the course instructor, the nature of the internship will be distinct from the paid work, AND the internship hours must be over and above work hours. Students completing their hours at their current workplace must submit an electronic timesheet to the Office of Internships at the end of the semester via the internship database.
A typical course will require between 90-150 hours for the semester. If the internship will not be taken for a course, we suggest the internship does not exceed more than 20 hours per week. Unpaid internships should not exceed longer than a semester.
At the moment, all internship opportunities are located in the USA. For study abroad opportunities, contact the Office of Global Education.
The university does not provide retroactive credit for past internships. Students wishing to receive credit for an internship must be simultaneously enrolled in an internship course during the completion of the internship. If your major does not provide an internship course, contact your major adviser to request more information.
The database is helpful to find businesses, non-profits, and government agencies that are approved internship sites. To use the database, log in with your CSUSM credentials. For additional assistance, refer to the database instruction and placement presentation (PDF) on the CSUSM Office of Internships website.
Once you have been offered the internship and have received faculty approval, create a placement in the database.
The option to select more than one site for an internship course may not be offered by every course instructor. Students must seek approval from the course instructor prior to selecting a second internship site. Consequently, the database will only allow once placement to be created by the student. After receiving instructor approval, send a request for a second placement with your name, course, second site information, site contact, and hours estimated to: email@example.com.
To request a site to be added to the database, a Request Community Partner form must be submitted upon receiving approval from the course instructor. The Office of Internships will contact the organization to request a University Community Partnership within 48 business hours after receiving the form. This process may take anywhere from 4-6 weeks as it requires online paperwork and documentation. To help expedite this process, be sure to check in with your site supervisor to ensure they have submitted all requested information.
A University Community Partnership Agreement is important because it establishes guidelines and policies for a quality internship experience*. If we do not hear back from your site or if they refuse to sign the agreement, you may still proceed with your internship with the following steps:
To make corrections to your completed placement, send your request with your name, course, and the information needed to be updated to: firstname.lastname@example.org
After enrolling in your class, allow 48 hours for your course to appear in the database.
International students should check in with the Office of Global Education for work authorization information. International students have some special regulations that apply only to international students such as completing curricular practice training. For assistance, refer to the Office of Global Education International Students.
AB540 students may participate in unpaid internship opportunities at non-profit organizations. Note some organizations will require a social security number for background checks. If applicable, this requirement will be noted under “additional requirements” on the organization’s information page in the database. In addition, consider taking an internship on campus. Many on-campus organizations will take on current students without a social security number. For additional resources, see the Office of Inclusive Excellence.
The Office of Internships works with a variety of organizations including but not limited to: Businesses, Non-profit Organizations, Government Agencies, Religious/Faith based organizations, and Political organizations. LGBTQA students are strongly encouraged to research organization structure and inquire about company culture and accommodations to determine if it is a good fit. For additional resources, see the Office of Inclusive Excellence.