Frequently Asked Questions

The Career Advancement Center can help you create an internship search plan and show you how an Academic Internship can fit into your schedule. Please review the most frequently asked questions below.

Am I required to do an internship? 

While we strongly encourage students to complete at least one (for-credit or non-credit) internship during their time at the College, it is not the only way to satisfy the Experiential Learning requirement. Other options to satisfy this requirement can be found on the Forester Fundamental Curriculum webpage.  

How many internship credits can I complete during my time at the College? 

Academic (for-credit) internships – You may pursue up to 3 while at the College.  

A student will not typically be allowed to receive more than a total of 3 internship credits during their time at the College. Students must appeal directly to the Academic Appeals Board if they wish to exceed this credit threshold. 

Non-credit internships – Unlimited! (International students on an F-1 of J-1 Visa must complete all internships for credit.) 

Should you wish to satisfy the Experiential Learning requirement with a non-credit internship, you will first need to complete the FFC-EL Non-Credit Application Form, located in the FFC-EL Non-Credit Application Guide, as well as identify a Faculty Project Supervisor. Non-credit internships are not supervised by the Career Advancement Center. More information may be found on the Forester Fundamental Curriculum webpage. 

How many credits can I take at a time? 

A minimum of 1 credit and a maximum of 2 credits may be awarded for each internship per semester. 

Can I pursue an internship as a sophomore? 

Students must be of junior or senior status during semester of completion. Sophomores who wish to complete an Academic Internship must submit a written appeal to the Career Advancement Center. Contact cacintern@lakeforest.edu for more information. 

Is there a course attached to completing an internship? 
Yes! You are required to complete weekly assignments developed by your Internship Specialist concurrently with the internship experience. Students earn credit for the hours spent on-site at their internship, as well as completing the required weekly assignments. Internships are graded Pass/Fail. 

I already have an internship. Can I get credit for it? 

Congratulations! Your next step will be to complete the Academic Internship Interest Form. We will then connect you with an Internship Specialist who will walk you through the process.  

Please note that you may only receive credit if your internship has been approved by an Internship Specialist by the add/drop date.  

I completed an internship in the past. Can I still get credit for it? 

Retroactive credit is not permitted. In order for you to earn credit for your internship, you must complete required weekly assignments supervised by your Internship Specialist concurrent with the internship experience.  

I am on Academic Probation. Can I still complete an internship? 

Students on academic probation are not eligible to receive academic credit for an internship. Appeals to this policy may be submitted to the Academic Appeals Board. 

Can I continue my internship into another semester? 

Students wishing to continue an existing internship as an Academic Internship must show that their responsibilities have significantly changed and that the new responsibilities will give the student a sufficiently different educational/academic experience. Please complete the Academic Internship Interest Form to be connected with an Internship Specialist who can walk you through the process. 

What is the difference between a Faculty Project Supervisor, Academic Advisor, and Internship Specialist? 

A Faculty Project Supervisor is only needed if you plan to gain approval for a non-credit internship or project to satisfy the Experiential Learning requirement. This is a faculty member that you identify to oversee your non-credit internship or project. While this certainly can be your Academic Advisor, it does not have to be. 

An Academic Advisor is a faculty member within the department of your major who supports you and provides guidance to you during your time at the College. Typically, they are your first point of contact for any academic concerns. 

An Internship Specialist is a member of the Career Advancement Center that aids you in the internship search process and supervises the internship course. 

Do I have to search for my own internships or will the Career Advancement Center help me with that? 

The internship search is a two-semester process. Your Internship Specialist is there to help guide you through the internship search process. They can help you identify resources and methods to help you secure an internship and share organizations that have hosted academic interns in the past. They will also help you craft your resume and cover letters and prepare for interviews.

Students are ultimately responsible for carrying out their search and finding an internship. It is imperative that you start your search early so that you have enough time to complete your search by the start of the semester. 

Can international students complete an internship or career related part-time work not for credit (paid or unpaid)?

No, international students on an F-1 or J-1 visa are not eligible to complete non-credit internships. International students are only permitted to complete Academic Internships for credit and must receive employment authorization (CPT) before starting their internship. 

Can international students apply for paid internships? 

International students can complete paid internships. However, please note that international students are only permitted to complete Academic Internships for credit and they must receive employment authorization (CPT) before starting their internship. 

Will a paid internship affect Financial Aid? 

No. An Academic Internship takes the place of a formal course and is included in your tuition.  

Is there funding for unpaid internships? 

Students can apply to receive financial assistance through our Internship Funding Program. Students must have secured an unpaid internship and plan to complete it as an Academic Internship for credit before applying for Lake Forest College Internship Funding. If you have secured an unpaid internship, please complete the Internship Funding Application. 

What is the registration deadline for an Academic Internship? 

Students should work with their Internship Specialist to secure their Academic Internship and submit their internship application no later than one week prior to the add/drop date for classes to allow time for approvals.

Do I need to register for the internship course?

Nope! The Career Advancement Center will take care of this for you. We've got you covered. 

How long does it take for my internship to be approved? 

Students must be approved by the Dean of Students, the Title IX Coordinator, their Academic Advisor, and their Internship Specialist before the Career Advancement Center will approve an Academic Internship for registration. This process can take up to four weeks after the add/drop date. You may begin your internship while these final approvals are pending. Please refer to our Academic Internship Course Page for more information.