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Undergraduate Program
Undergraduate Studies Personnel

Director of Undergraduate Studies

Stephen Gent

Undergraduate Adviser

Hollie Mann

Undergraduate Studies Coordinator

Susan Heske

Department Chair

Evelyne Huber

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    Internships

    Political Science majors who would like to obtain credit for internship work in government or public service need to enroll in POLI 193. This course includes both an internship and an academic component. The student intern is required to work at least 8 hours per week, for a minimum of 100 hours, at the internship agency. In addition to the hours worked, the student must write, under the supervision of the faculty supervisor, a research paper, or complete a comparable project, and keep a journal of internship activities. To receive three hours of academic credit, the student is expected to devote at least nine combined hours per week on the internship and the academic component of the course.

    POLI 193 is graded pass/fail only and does not count towards the Political Science major.

    All students registering for POLI 193 must complete the Internship Learning Contract and have it approved by the department's Director of Internships, Navin Bapat, by the following deadlines:

    Fall and Spring semesters: The contract must be approved by the Friday of the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first.

    Summer semesters: The contract must be approved by the Friday prior to the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first.

    Please note: Students will not be able to register for POLI 193 after the add period.

    Click Here for the POLI 193 Internship Learning Contract.


    NOTE: If you are interested in pursuing a POLI 193 internship, you will also need copies of the following documents, which you can download here:

    1. Internship Checklist
    2. Agency Evaluation Form

    For more information about POLI 193, please contact the Director of Internships, Navin Bapat.

     

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Below are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions:

    Purpose of Internship
    Types of Internships
    Tasks of Interns
    Academic Credit
    Faculty Supervisor
    Approval Requirements
    Procedure for Approval
    Time Requirement
    Paper Requirement
    Journal Requirement
    POLI 193 Internship Learning Contract
    Meeting Requirement
    Evaluation
    Grading
    Internship Funding Sources

     

    Two Purposes of the POLI 193 Internship

    1. To provide students the opportunity to earn academic credit while obtaining appropriate, practical work experience demonstrably related to the study of political science;

    2. To enable the student to develop the research basis necessary to write a high-quality research or project paper on a topic related to the intern's work at the agency or organization.

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    Types of Internship Agencies or Organizations Allowed

    The work of the sponsoring agency must be meaningfully connected to the study of political science. It is the student's responsibility to find his or her own internship; however, the Director of Internships is available to provide assistance and information.
    Also, the UNC Career Services Internship Office website at http://careers.unc.edu/ is a useful resource.

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    Tasks of Interns at Agencies

    Although some routine administrative tasks are required of any professional employee, it is expected that the majority of the intern's work will be directed towards the substantive mission of the agency and that the tasks will be of a quality and nature that will justify the award of academic credit. (For example, in an agency that serves clients, the intern must have recurrent contacts with the client population whose problems the agency is addressing.)

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    Academic Credit and Limitations

    1. POLI 193 is limited to only Political Science majors.

    2. A student is limited to 3 hours of academic credit for a POLI 193 Internship.

    3. A student is limited to one POLI 193 Internship.

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    Faculty Supervisor

    The faculty supervisor must be a member of the Political Science Department. The student is responsible for finding a faculty supervisor who will work with the student; however, the Internship Director will assist students who need help in locating a faculty sponsor. Students who find internships are not guaranteed a faculty sponsor. Therefore, students are advised to secure a faculty supervisor early.

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    Prior Approval of Internships Required

    All students registering for POLI 193 must complete the Internship Learning Contract and have it approved by the department's Director of Internships, Navin Bapat, by the following deadlines:

    Fall and Spring semesters: The contract must be approved by the Friday of the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first.

    Summer semesters: The contract must be approved by the Friday prior to the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first.

    Please note: Students will not be able to register for POLI 193 after the add period.

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    Procedures for Prior Approval of Internships

    1. Fall and Spring Semester Internships: If the student will be working at an internship during the fall or spring semester, the student should arrange the internship, obtain the faculty supervisor's approval, and sign the internship contract during preregistration the semester prior to the internship. However, in the event that this is not possible, the Internship Learning Contract should be completed and approved by the Internship Director and the Director of Undergraduate Studies by the Friday of the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first.

    2. Summer Internships: Students who are interested in doing a summer internship can receive academic credit during the summer session or during the fall semester immediately following the internship.

    a. Summer session credit: A student may complete a summer internship for summer session credit only if the student secures a faculty sponsor who will be available to the student during that session. The contract must be approved by the Friday prior to the first week of classes or prior to the first day of the internship, whichever comes first. The requirements for summer session internships are the same as for POLI 193 internships during the fall and spring semesters.

    b. Fall semester credit: Summer internships will be considered for approval only if the student has obtained a faculty supervisor, completed arrangements with the agency, and turned in the internship contract prior to the first day of the internship. Credit for POLI 193 is earned and the research or project paper is completed during the fall semester following the summer internship.

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    Internship Time Requirement

    The student intern is required to work at least 8 hours per week, for a minimum of 100 hours, at the internship agency. In addition to the hours worked, the student must write, under the supervision of the faculty supervisor, a research paper, or complete a comparable project, and keep a journal of internship activities. To receive three hours of academic credit, the student is expected to devote at least nine combined hours per week on the internship and the academic component of the course. The same minimum number of hours is required for summer and summer school session internships.

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    Research or Project Paper Requirement

    A high-quality research or project paper on a topic related to the internship is required. The length of the paper, the date due, and the topic of the project are to be determined by the faculty supervisor and the intern.

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    Journal Requirement

    The student is required to keep an internship journal containing daily entries. These entries should set out the intern's activities at the internship that day, the intern's impressions and perceptions of those activities, reflections on how that day's work relates to the student's service and learning objectives, and actions that the student plans to take at the placement in the future based on what the student learned that day.

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    Internship Learning Contract

    The Internship Learning Contract sets out the POLI 193 requirements and the particular tasks and goals for that student's internship as determined by the agency, student, and faculty supervisor. The student is responding for submitting the completed Internship Learning Contract to the Director of Internships for approval, including the sections that must be completed and signed by the agency and faculty supervisor. The student is responsible for providing copies of the completed contract to the faculty supervisor and agency.

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    Meetings with Faculty Supervisor Required

    The intern is required to meet periodically with the faculty supervisor to discuss the research or project paper, the student's progress, and any internship-related problems. The number of meetings, times, and dates are to be determined by the faculty supervisor. If problems arise at the internship, the student is required to contact the faculty supervisor immediately.

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    Evaluation

    The student is responsible for providing the Agency Evaluation Form to the agency. The completed agency evaluation must be turned in to the faculty supervisor to assist that person in assigning a final grade to the student.

    The faculty supervisor determines what weight will be given to the student and agency evaluations, the journal, and the paper; and the faculty supervisor should provide that information to the intern at the beginning of the internship.

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    Grading

    POLI 193 is graded pass/fail only and does not count towards the Political Science major.

    The faculty supervisor's grade is the student's final grade.

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    Internship Funding Sources at UNC

    Internships are an essential way for undergraduates to gain career experience. University Career Services offers a listing of possible sources of funding for UNC-CH students pursuing summer internships.

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