Academic Credit for Internships

The Economics Department supports students who desire to broaden their range of educational experience beyond the traditional classroom. To this end, ECON386 allows students to obtain credit for employment or internships related to their studies in economics.

Students are responsible for seeking and securing their own internships. While the Economics Department will post internship opportunities forwarded by potential sponsors, the department does not actively match students with internships. Internship announcements that are submitted to our department are posted for students on the ECON Undergraduate Blog. In addition, the University Career Center maintains a database of available jobs and internships through their Careers4Terps website. Students are also encouraged to search for internships using their own resources. Internships must be approved by ECON Advising prior to the interns start date and the beginning of the semester. If your internship takes place during the summer, you must register and pay for ECON386 during the summer term - you cannot earn credit after your internship is already completed.

If approved, students will earn three (3) credits for ECON386. For students on the Bachelor of Arts track, these credits may count towards their Experiential Learning requirement. For students on the Bachelor of Science track, these credits will count as elective credits (towards the minimum number of credits needed for an undergraduate degree). Grades for ECON386 are Satisfactory or Fail (S/F). Per university policy, Satisfactory (S) grades are not included in GPA; however, a Failing (F) grade will be. ECON386 may not be repeated.

Student Eligibility Requirements

▪       Student must be an economics major.

▪       Student must have at least 60 cumulative credits completed.

▪       Student must have a minimum UMD cumulative GPA of at least 2.5.

Internship Eligibility Requirements

▪       Academic credit will only be granted for para- or pre-professional work. 

▪       Clerical, basic administative office work, or internships requiring cold calling do not qualify.

▪       The internship must be related to a student's study of Economics in some regard.

▪       The internship must be completed on site at a well-established organization under the direct supervision of an experienced professional. Remote internships are not eligible.

▪       The internship cannot be at a company owned by a relative, with a relative, or with anyone who reports to a relative.

▪       Student must work 135 hours during the semester the student is registered for the internship.

▪       Credit for ECON386 will only be given in the semester during which the internship is conducted.

Note: If you have any questions regarding the eligibility of a particular internship for academic credits, please meet with an ECON advisor prior to accepting the position. 

ECON386 Application

In order to receive credit for ECON386, a student must complete the application form. Before submitting to ECON Advising, the student must completely fill out and sign the application and then obtain a signature from their internship supervisor. Students must also submit a current resume with their application form. 

The Director of Undergraduate Studies for Economics will review the application and may contact either the student or the internship supervisor for additional information prior to determination of eligibility. Once approved, an Economics Advisor will notify the student by email that they can register for ECON386 using Testudo.

All applications MUST be submitted with sufficient time in order to be evaluated prior to the last day of schedule adjustment for the current semester.

ECON386 Assignments

ECON386 will have four components: progress reports, final reflection paper, letter from the supervisor, and internship review. Failure to complete any of these assignments will result in a grade of "F."

Progress Reports:

Written progress reports must be submitted via ELMS. The progress report should be a word or PDF document. All reports must be one page in length (double spaced, 12 point font) and include the student's name, date, progress report number, hours worked, and a description of the student's responsibilities that week(s) as well as what the student has learned. The template for the progress report can be found here.

The frequency of the progress reports will be determined by the ECON386 Coordinator at the beginning of the semester. This is dependent on the number of weeks and hours per week a student is scheduled to work. For a typical internship which spans the entire Fall or Spring semester, progress reports would be due bi-weekly. The exact deadlines for these progress reports will be on the syllabus and the ELMS coursepage.

Final Reflection Paper:

Students must prepare a short, five page paper (double spaced, 12 point font) describing their learning experience and how it relates to their economics degree. Students must also submit an updated resume that reflects their completed internship. The resume does not count towards the five pages required. This will be due at the end of the semester and the exact deadline will be on the syllabus and the ELMS coursepage.

Letter from Supervisor:

At the end of the semester, the student's supervisor must send a signed letter on company letterhead stating that the student has successfully completed the internship, completed the minimum of 135 hours, and indicating their feedback on the student's performance. The exact deadline will be on the syllabus. The letter may be sent via email to Phylicia Nance at nance@econ.umd.edu or faxed to (301) 405-3542. The letter must come directly from the supervisor.

Internship Review:

Students must fill out an internship review evaluating their internship. The exact deadline will be on the syllabus and the ELMS coursepage. The review will be added anonymously to a binder of internship reviews for current and future students looking for internships. A copy of the Internship Review Form can be found here.

Additional Information:

•       At the start of the semester, all students enrolled in ECON386 will receive a detailed syllabus with exact due dates listed.

•       Supervisors may be contacted throughout the semester to verify the student's schedule, duties, as well as to determine how well the intern is performing his/her work.

•       In case of illness, students are responsible for notifying their supervisor in advance as well as noting in their progress report their missed work days.

Professional Responsibilities

Students should keep in mind when they are at their internship they are in a professional working environment. This is a great opportunity for students to network, gain work experience, develop themselves on a personal level, and earn recommendations for future jobs/graduate school. Students are expected to act in a professional manner. While at an internship, students are not just representing themselves, but they are representing the University of Maryland, College Park and the Department of Economics.

If you have any questions about your eligibility for earning academic credit via an internship, contact the Economics Department Advisors.