Must-Read for ICT Internships

Academic credit internships require the supervision of a faculty member and an on-site internship supervisor, and create a bridge between the education received at the university and workplace expectations.

Students who complete internships gain on-the-job experience and develop professional skills like networking and office skills are more prepared for jobs after graduation. Interns are expected to have basic skills necessary for the company for which they will be working. They are also expected to gain experience and learn new skills for their professional career. 

All information communication technology majors and graduate students are required to complete a three-credit ICT 596 internship before graduation. All ICT students will produce a final poster project and deliver a presentation. Work done at an ICT internship is an essential part of the project because prospective employers are looking for people with internships and professional publications. 

Below are the steps that you need to take for an internship. Please read through them all carefully before beginning the process. 

Once you have looked over all of the material below, you will be asked to give an electronic signature certifying that you read and understand the internship process.

If you have questions, please contact

Step 1: Student eligibility

An internship is a supervised career related work experience that allows you to apply classroom learning to real world situations. To ensure that an experience is educational and thus eligible to be considered a legitimate internship, all the following criteria must be met:

  • The experience must be a learning experience that applies knowledge gained in the classroom. It must not simply advance the operations of the host employer or be the work that a regular employee would routinely perform.

  • The skills or knowledge learned must be transferrable to other employment settings.

  • The experience has a defined beginning and end, and a job description with desired qualifications.

  • There are clearly defined learning objectives/goals related to the professional goals for the student's academic coursework. 

  • There is supervision by a professional with expertise and educational and/or professional background in the field of the experience. 

  • There is routine feedback by the experienced supervisor. 

  • There are resources, equipment, and facilities provided by the host employer that support learning objectives/goals. 

If these criteria are followed, it is the opinion of NACE that the experience can be considered a legitimate internship (National Association of Colleges and Employers, December 19, 2011). 

ICT Faculty want you to do an internship at a time in your academic career when you will not only benefit from the internship, but will be able to make a contribution to the organization that is sponsoring your internship.

  • In order to register for ICT 596, you must have successfully completed ICT 200, 201, 202, 205, 300, and 301.

  • If you do not complete the required courses before the internship is to begin, you will be dropped from ICT 596 and will not be able to do the internship that semester. *Remember that you can complete an EXP internship before you meet these requirements, though that credit will not count towards graduation.

  • Qualifying students may earn a maximum of three hours of academic credit for a professional internship under the ICT 596 course title. (However, the School strongly encourages you to have as many additional internships as possible).

Graduate students only: You are expected to complete fifteen hours of required coursework (ICT 600, 610, 650, and 661 or other qualifying data science course) within the first 18 hours of the program with the exception of ICT 596 (to be taken after completion of 18 hours).

Step 2: Finding an internship

We recommend that you start looking for an internship early. Most times that is at least a semester before you would like to complete it, because some summer internships often have deadlines in November and December. You should be sure that you know when the application is due. You should decide on an internship before you apply and are approved. 

Internships should involve exposure to the mission, vision and values of the organization, working on projects that encourage practical application of skills and teach about the industry through activities such as attendance at conferences and/or meetings, being mentored, etc. Virtual or remote internships may need additional criteria. 

We recommend the following internship resources: 

Note about internships: For liability reasons, the workplace may not be a private residence or home office. Additionally, the internship must be a new experience. If you choose to complete the internship at your current place of employment you must work under a different supervisor and department/division (i.e., if you work in information security, you could intern in networking) and the internship hours should be outside the regularly scheduled hours. Lastly, students cannot designate a family member as their internship supervisor.

Step 3: How to apply for an internship

Check internship listings at the UK Career Center, the ICT listserv, LinkedIn, among others. Figure out who the contact person is and how they prefer to be contacted. Some organizations would like an email with a cover letter and resume, while others prefer a phone call. Ultimately, it is up to the student to secure the internship. If you need direction on finding an internship for the semester, please contact Harlie Collins.

Step 4: How to enroll in the internship course

You will 1) certify that you have read this material 2) complete the subsequent application, 3) submit a completed learning contract, and 4) have the learning contract approved by the School. You cannot register for this course online, nor are you permitted to register for it until the faculty advisor has approved the learning contract. 

*The internship application asks you to specify where you plan to intern and which semester. If you are applying at more than one site, list all of them. If you don't know, or plan to intern at a site that you aren't sure has been approved, do not delay applying. The internship coordinator needs to review the application to be sure that you are eligible, in addition to assigning you a faculty advisor. 

Step 5: Complete the learning contract and pay tuition

The learning contract is an agreement between you, your internship supervisor, and your faculty advisor. It states your responsibilities and duties during the internship, and what you expect to learn. All parties are required to sig the contract. 

The learning contract is to be completed by the student in consultation with the internship supervisor, except that the student is to complete the description of the final poster project in consultation with their faculty advisor (the instructor). When the contract is completed, the student and internship supervisor sign in the place provided, and the student then submits the contract to their faculty advisor for a final signature. Afterwards, the student should submit the completed and signed contract to, prior to the beginning of the semester or term. The student affairs staff will send the contract to administration for final approval. At the end of the semester, the internship supervisor completes an evaluation and the student will complete a self-evaluation. The faculty advisor assigns the final grade for the course. 

Completed internship learning contracts for Summer 2018 should be sent to by Tuesday, May 15The last day to have a contract approved for internship credit for Fall 2018 is Tuesday, Aug. 28 and for Spring 2019 is Tuesday, Jan. 15. In the eight-week summer session, the last date to have a contract approved and begin work in the internship is one week after the eight-week summer session begins. Tuition is included when you register for fall or spring semesters between 12 and 19 hours. If you take a summer internship for ICT 596 credit you will pay for three credit hours. Check the academic calendar on the Registrar's website for the semester you will intern. 

You will be billed for tuition during the semester in which you are working at the internship site.

Step 6: What's expected of you during the internship

The School requires you to spend 140 hours at your internship for three credits. It is highly recommended that students work on-site in blocks of at least four hours at a time. For a three-credit internship, a total of 140 work hours (10 hours per week) are required. All work must be sanctioned by and documented.

During the eight-week summer session, you would devote close to 20 hours a week. You may register for the eight-week summer session, but begin the work in the four-week term. That way the hours would be spread out over 12 weeks rather than eight. 

PRO TIP: Treat the internship as the first step in your career. Be on time, stay the hours that you have said you were going to work, avoid doing personal errands, etc. Expect to work holidays, weekends, and long hours. Remember that the internship supervisor evaluation is a vital part of the evaluation process. Negative feedback can adversely affect your grade. Your internship site will need to provide any necessary hardware and software. 

No academic credit is granted for any internship taken prior to formal enrollment in ICT 596 and completion of all required preliminary procedures. You will only receive credit for the ICT 596 internship during the same semester you are completing hours. This is because a you are under faculty supervision while interning.

Note about expectations: The internship and academic components must be concurrent; therefore, retroactive assignment submissions are not granted for internships. Non-attendance, failure to complete the required internship hours, or failure to do the end-of-term presentation will result in non-passing grade.

Step 7: How your grade is determined 

Students enrolled in ICT 596 receive a letter grade. The faculty advisor who serves as the course instructor assigns the grade based on the internship supervisor's evaluation of the students performance, and the evaluation of the academic components. 

During the semester there are several other mandatory steps you must complete to receive a grade: 

1. Meet with your faculty advisor before the internship begins to agree on how you will communicate. 

2. Submit weekly (summer interns) or bi-weekly (spring/fall interns) reports to your faculty advisor. The body of the report should include the internship location, number of hours worked that week, the total hours worked to date, and a paragraph summarizing what you did and learned that week. Without a complete file of these reports, a student cannot receive a grade. Please understand that the ICT 596 logs are a writing requirement. Bulleted lists will not be accepted as fulfillment of the writing requirement. Progress reports are separate from the time sheet or hourly log, which needs to be completed and submitted to the faculty advisor the day before the semester ends.

3. Near the end of the semester interns will participate in the Internship Showcase. Students will be expected to talk about the internship experience and will need to provide a poster. Interns should talk with their faculty advisors about what to include in the visual aid and format. 

4. In place of a final examination, you are required to write a two-four-page summary report. The report should be typed and double-spaced. You are expected to summarize the activities undertaken in the internship with specific reference to what you did, what you learned, how the internship has affected your interest in a career in the field, and what it was like to work at the internship site. You may also offer recommendations on ways to improve or expand your experience. 

5. The internship coordinator will request the internship supervisor to complete an evaluation of the intern's work. You should also remind your supervisor to complete the form in a timely manner. You will not receive a grade until the supervisor has submitted the evaluation. To access the evaluation form please follow this link: ICT 596 Internship Supervisor Evaluation

6. You must also complete a self-evaluation at the end of your internship. The purpose of the evaluation is to provide you an opportunity to (i) reflect on your internship activities and (ii) offer candid and honest assessments of your performance, degree of learning during the internship, and overall quality of the internship experience. 

7.  All interns must write a brief thank you letter to the internship supervisor and give a copy to their faculty advisor. You should mention what they got out of the internship and how it helped your career. 

Graduate students only: ICT master's students will be expected to complete the aforementioned assignments, in addition to a literature review. 

Final Step: Certify that you have read this document

It is really important for you to have read this whole page. You will NOT be allowed to apply until this step is complete. 


Please click here to verify you have read and understand the requirements to access the internship application.