The purpose of an internship is to give students realistic exposure to a real work environment. The MPA program works with a variety of public and nonprofit organizations to provide students with an unforgettable learning experience.
Many students who have interned with an agency have gone on to successful professional careers with that agency.
A graduate student who has had little or no public or nonprofit agency experience will be required to take a 3-hour internship course (PADM 6900). This course will substitute for an elective course. The MPA Director identifies students in need of an internship as they are admitted to the MPA program.
The internship may not be scheduled until the student has completed at least three core courses in the program. The course is offered in the spring and summer (full-term) semesters.
Recent internship sites include: CSRA Regional Commission, City of North Augusta, Aiken County (Human Resources and Parks, Recreation and Tourism), Office of Mayor Hardie Davis, GRU Office of Advancement, Ronald McDonald House Charities, The Lydia Project, Safe Homes of Augusta, Augusta Warrior Project, the Family Y (downtown), the Salvation Army (Kroc Center), U.S. Senators and House Representative Offices (locally and in DC).
All internships last for a full semester. Student interns are expected to work a total of 300 hours. In the spring, this requires 20 hours per week (15 week semester) and in the summer, this requires 30 hours per week (10 week semester). Students will work with the internship coordinator to set up interviews/select a worksite. Students will meet with site supervisor to set goals for the internship which will be reported to the internship coordinator. Grading in the course is based on attendance, performance (evaluated by site supervisor at midterm and end of the term), bi-weekly activity reports, and a final paper.
The purpose of an internship is to give students realistic exposure to an organizational/bureaucratic environment. The internship experience should enhance the student’s awareness of the internal dynamics of a public or nonprofit organization and the values and attitudes of employees toward their clientele and their administrative or political superiors. The internship should give students the opportunity to become aware of their obligations as professionals and to those they will serve.