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Experiential Learning and Internships

In addition to assisting students with their permanent job search, EdCareers also helps provide a bridge between students and employers for valuable experiential learning.

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Who does experiential learning?

Master of science students in the Education Data Science (EDS) program and the Learning Design and Technology (LDT) program, and Master of arts students in the Policy, Organization, and Leadership Studies (POLS) program complete required experiential learning as an integral part of their program. Students in our joint master’s programs–MA/MBA, MA/MPP, and MA/JD–may integrate experiential learning and internships in keeping with their academic interests and professional goals.

Required experiential learning

Education Data Science (MS) Internship 6-10 hours/week* One quarter 
Learning Design and Technology (MS) Internship 6-10 hours/week** Two quarters
Policy, Organization, and Leadership Studies (MA) Field Project 150 hours total Two quarters (winter & spring)

*may work up to 40 hours/week during the summer quarter
**may work up to 20 hours/week during the summer quarter

Optional experiential learning

Joint MA/MBA in education and business duration and format varies
Joint MA/MPP in education and public policy duration and format varies
Joint MA/JD in education and law duration and format varies

Experiential learning helps students to:

  • refine career goals
  • broaden and enhance marketable skills
  • connect academic learning to real-world experience
  • learn about a sector, organization, or role while building a professional network

How do students find experiential learning opportunities?

Students find experiential learning opportunities through the EdCareers portal, through other job posting sites, and through direct contact with employers. In some cases program directors help students connect with experiential learning hosts.

What makes for a quality experiential learning opportunity?

Ideal experiential learning helps the student build professional skills while applying classroom concepts to projects that are “mission critical” to the host organization. EdCareers recommends no more than 10 hours per week, with student and manager meeting regularly. Experiential Learning can be paid and/or for academic credit.

For more information on what defines an internship, please visit the NACE internship position statement.

International students

International students face some extra requirements for holding internships in the U.S. The Curricular Practical Training (CPT) authorization applies to students in programs with a required internship. Optional Practical Training (OPT) is an off-campus employment benefit for employment in the major field of study. To learn more about CPT and OPT, visit the Bechtel International Center website.

Learn more about CPT and OPT

Internship process (EDS & LDT)* **

  1. In consultation with program director, student may enroll in EDUC 215 to earn academic credit.
  2. Student finds experiential learning opportunity.
  3. Student and manager complete online internship agreement in the EdCareers portal.
  4. Student participates in experiential learning with support and guidance from program director and EdCareers staff.
  5. Student completes a self-evaluation survey, and manager provides feedback on student performance.
  6. Student may repeat an internship for an additional quarter with manager approval

* For MA/MBA students, please consult with MA/MBA director Geoff Cox ( if you are interested in pursuing an internship for academic credit.

** For all other graduate students, contact EdCareers Director Emi Kuboyama ( if you are interested in pursuing an internship.

Internship Agreements

Internship Agreements help to ensure that you and the organization that you are working with are on the same page in terms of understanding the time, resources, and outcome of expectations for your internship.

Check out our Internship Agreement Guide to learn more

Contact us

If have questions about internships, please contact us at


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Hiring a GSE master’s student intern is a great way to gain knowledgeable contributions to your projects, bring new perspectives to your work, and support the development of emerging professionals in your field. It’s also a great way to cultivate a future recruitment pipeline for excellent, well-prepared talent.

How to host a GSE intern

Post the position

Create an account in the EdCareers portal and complete the form to post your position. Students may apply through the portal or by emailing you directly.

Hire a student

Students negotiate the details of the position with their manager and submit an online internship agreement, which the manager signs.

Host the intern

Near the end of the quarter the student completes a self-evaluation survey, and the manager provides feedback on the student’s performance.

Key dates

Quarter Quarter starts Internship agreement due Quarter ends
Summer 2022 June 20 July 8 August 11
Fall 2022 September 26 October 14 December 8
Winter 2023 January 9 January 27 March 17
Spring 2023 April 3 April 21 June 9
Summer 2023 June 26 July 14 August 18
Fall 2023 September 25 October 6 December 15
Winter 2023 January 8 January 19 March 22
Spring 2024 April 1 April 12 June 12
Summer 2024 June 24 July 5 August 17

Contact us

For questions about hosting a GSE intern, please contact Alanna Simao at

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