The Bellarmine Internship Guarantee

BUild Your Experience at BU

Internships are a valuable way to explore career paths and to gain relevant work experience in your field of interest. Did you know that students who complete internships are more likely to successfully find employment after graduation, work in their field of study, and earn higher wages than students who do not complete internships?

At Bellarmine, we know that internships can take on a variety of different forms, from co-ops to research projects to clinicals and student teaching! We GUARANTEE every student the opportunity to have an internship, develop a career plan and build a professional network.

Build your Unique Experiential Learning Plan

Students are encouraged to complete the following career courses to support students as they build their career and experiential learning roadmap:

BU199: “Major and Career Pathways” is a 1-credit, 7-week course designed to guide students through a process of self-discovery and discernment to explore majors and career opportunities that align with their values, interests, personality, and skills.

BU299: “Internship Preparation and Success” is a 1-credit, 7-week course designed to empower students in their internship and job search and prepare them for professional expectations of the workplace. BU299 is also a pre-requisite to receive the Summer Internship Scholarship.

Explore Ways to Gain Relevant Experience

Campus Involvement & Student Organizations – Getting involved on campus can help students explore majors and careers, build their professional network, and gain valuable leadership experience. Many clubs and organizations are closely tied to career pathways. Visit the Involvement Fair, held every fall and spring semester to learn more about student organizations at Bellarmine or check out Engage to discover a full list of student organizations.

Every Person Inspires Community (EPIC) Student Employment –Working on campus provides students an opportunity to develop in-demand transferrable skills through work experience, professional development, and skills training. Visit Handshake for a full list of employment opportunities and eligibility requirements.

Part-time Employment – According to the US Department of Education, over 40% of full-time students work while completing their degree. Part-time employment can provide students with additional income, while also building their network and relevant transferrable skills that will last a lifetime. Each year, the Career Center hosts a Part-time Jobs Fair for students to connect with employment opportunities close to campus. Students can also visit Handshake at any time to search for employers actively hiring.

Undergraduate Research – Complete an independent research course by working one on one with a faculty member in the sciences.

Arts & Entertainment – Prepare for a career in the arts by exhibiting your work at the Annual Student Show in the McGrath Gallery, join one of Bellarmine’s many instrumental or vocal ensembles, or audition to be part of the cast or crew during one of Bellarmine’s Black Box Theatre productions.

Study Abroad – Expand your global worldview by engaging in an intercultural experience. Bellarmine offers a variety of international experiences, both on-campus and abroad that are catered towards individuals needs and interest areas. Students must meet with the Study Abroad and International Programs staff before studying abroad.

Community Engagement & Volunteerism – At Bellarmine, we believe community engagement is meaningful work, and community engagement experiences are woven throughout Bellarmine’s curriculum. Students can also earn credit towards their degree by registering for a community-based practicum (30 hours), a nonprofit internship (90 hours), or enrolling in a Serve and Learn semester (180 hours). Visit the Center for Community Engagement for more ways to get involved or MobileServe for a full list of volunteer opportunities in the region.

Internships & Co-Ops – Internships & Co-Ops are temporary, yet substantive forms of experiential learning that allow students to explore real-world work environments and build relevant experience in their career field of interest. These forms of experiential learning are typically completed during students’ junior and senior years and should connect to their program of study. Internships & Co-Ops can also help you earn academic credit towards your degree. For more information about how to register your internship for credit or the requirements by major, visit the Academic Credit for Internships drop-down below.

To ensure that an experience—whether it is a traditional internship, or one conducted remotely or virtually—is educational, and thus eligible to be considered a legitimate internship by the NACE definition, all the following criteria must be met:

  • The experience must be an extension of the classroom: a learning experience that provides for applying the knowledge gained in the classroom. It must not be simply to advance the operations of the employer or be the work that a regular employee would routinely perform.
  • The skills or knowledge learned must be transferable 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 of 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.

For further discussion and information concerning the legal requirements and standards of internships, we recommend you review the NACE Position Statement: U.S. Internships A Definition and Criteria to Assess Opportunities And Determine the Implications for Compensation.

Financial Support for Experiential Learning

The Summer Internship Scholarship reduces the rate of a 3-credit hour summer internship course to $450, resulting in over $1,500 in savings over standard university summer credit hour rates. Students who have completed BU299 or a designated equivalent course (i.e. PSYC299, ENGL299, and DAT201) are automatically eligible for the scholarship. Students will be assigned a career advisor who can assist them in the process as needed.

The Community Engagement Access Fund supports a stipend for students pursuing unpaid experiences in the nonprofit or government sector of Louisville or Southern Indiana and who demonstrate a financial need. Students can request funds during the fall, spring, or summer terms, which can be used to complete a practicum (30-hour) at $9/hour, or an internship (90-hour) or co-op (180-hour) at $12/hour.

Students must apply for funding by completing this form before the following deadlines:

  • Fall – August 1
  • Spring – December 1
  • Summer – May 1

Applications will be reviewed by committee and award recipients must meet with a member of the Career Development Center or the Center for Community Engagement to review the eligibility requirements and to connect students with community partners in the students' social justice area of interest. Funds will be distributed on a first come, first-served basis.

Student eligibility requirements include:

  • Must pursue the experience for academic credit through your academic department to ensure accountability. Students must verify their experience by completing the Application and Proposal form in Handshake before the add/drop deadline each term.
  • Must complete the virtual Learn to Serve Orientation.
  • Must complete timecards to verify employment.

The Center for Community Engagement Impact Grants are available to all Bellarmine University students, faculty, and staff to apply for on an ongoing basis. The purpose of the grants are to provide seed funding of $50-500 in support of innovative initiatives that are mutually-beneficial, sustainable, and create positive impact. Students applying for Impact Grants must have a faculty or staff sponsor. Complete the application form to submit a grant request. 

Mentoring & Networking

Networking Programming & Events serve as opportune places to connect with employers in your industry area of interest. Networking takes many different forms, from classroom panels to information sessions, career fairs, and more! Each year, the Career Development Center works with employer and faculty partners to host events to assist students in their discovery of internships or part-time and full-time employment opportunities. Visit the Events tab for a complete schedule of upcoming programs and events.

Bellarmine alumni provide valuable support to current students on their career journey. Bellarmine’s Alumni Mentor Program is one of the largest collegiate mentoring programs in the nation, connecting with more than 400 students each year! For more information on mentoring events, visit the Alumni Mentor Program.