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Internships & Experiential Learning

Experiential Learning takes place through direct experience/contact with a business, nonprofit agency, in an on- or off-campus setting outside of a classroom, laboratory, or other structured university learning environment. It can also be described as a process through which the student reflects upon an applied experience and – from that reflection – gains new insights and learning.

Experiential learning can be achieved in a variety of ways, including:

Internships (for credit or noncredit)

Internships are structured, supervised, professional, and practical experiential learning opportunities for students. An internship at Marymount is guided by learning goals and supervised by both academic and agency personnel. Internships may be offered for credit or on a noncredit basis. The Center for Career Services is happy to help you with both.

For-Credit Internships

For-credit internships are generally more substantive, with no more than 20 percent clerical or administrative tasks. Students in a for-credit internship work with an academic internship mentor (faculty member/AIM) on academic assignments related to the content of their internships. For-credit internships must be completed within one semester. MU students who hope to earn 6 credit hours should be working a minimum of 240 hours throughout the semester, which converts to approximately 10-20 hours a week. You must be at least a junior, transfer, or graduate student, with a minimum of 90 credits and at least one semester completed at Marymount. For-credit internships are generally as academically challenging as any course.

Noncredit Internships

A noncredit internship is something you may do that is independent of your University coursework. It’s a great way to explore a career field, gain experience, learn about the inner workings of an office, choose a major, earn supplementary income, start networking, and build your résumé! These positions may be more clerical in nature, but you may gain a wealth of knowledge about working in the “real world.”

Service Learning/Volunteer Opportunities

Service learning/volunteer opportunities are learning experiences usually working with nonprofit organizations within the community on a volunteer basis.

Marymount University’s Campus Ministry works with quite a few volunteer organizations in the local area, and students are encouraged to participate during their college career.


At Marymount University, the terms “internship” and “co-op” can be interchangeable with one exception: The federal government quite often offers co-ops (cooperative education positions); however, they differ from internships in that at the end of the work period the co-op student may have the opportunity to become a permanent government employee without reapplying for the position. Federal government internships — as opposed to co-op positions — may not offer this option.


Externships are professional experiences associated with, but not officially residing in, an institution, especially a nonresident physician on a hospital staff. This experience is typically geared toward Nursing students.


Those seeking teaching licensure will participate in a student-teaching experience, facilitated by the School of Education and Human Services.

Those wishing to teach in elementary or secondary school settings typically go through the student-teaching process to gain experience in the local school systems. Exposure to teaching two different grade levels is provided for each student-teacher in elementary, middle, and senior high school classrooms. The student-teacher has “cooperative teachers” who serve as on-site mentors, and their AIM is called a “university supervisor.”

Clinical Experiences

Health Sciences, Nursing, and Physical Therapy majors will typically take on clinical experiences, sometimes referred to as rotational assignments. An example would be a Nursing student who rotates from Labor and Delivery to Surgical Preparation to Oncology or other departments to gain exposure to the many different settings in which health practitioners work. The on-site supervisor or mentor is referred to as a “preceptor.”

Click on the appropriate link below for information relative to your area of study:

International Opportunities

Marymount offers opportunities to intern in many locations overseas through its Study Abroad program. For more opportunities abroad, visit these sites: