Guided professional practicum in business administration involving an internship with a business organization. Practice of business skills in a field setting. Prerequisites: BA 321, BA 322, BA 420, and completion of 6 credits at the 300- or 400-level in the student’s option.
Implementation Technique/Description of Approach
This course is a senior-level project activity intended to build upon all of a student’s previous coursework in business, links the theoretical with day-to-day practical applications, and represents the single largest event in the Bachelor of Science in Business (BSB) program. This course is where the student will design an internship with a business organization in which they have a particular interest and, under the supervision of a faculty member, will practice integrating and applying business fundamentals and skills in a field setting, carry out analysis, prepare a comprehensive paper, and give a presentation of their work.
All parties involved in the internship project should benefit from the experience. The student should receive practical, "hands-on" experience in the business world. The employer benefits from having a highly motivated intern who can contribute to the success of the business. The University benefits from the contacts and goodwill generated by placing our students with local, regional, national, and international organizations. As with many of the other courses within the BSB curriculum, this course further reinforces the development of writing and presentation skills, but also helps the student integrate and apply business administration skills and competencies.
This is one of the six signature BSB courses (B A 321, B A 322, BA 420, B A 421, B A 495A, B, or C, and B A 422W) and should be taken as close as possible to the end of the course of study. It is recommended that BA 495A be taken concurrently with B A 422W, the capstone course for the BSB degree.
General Course Requirements
1. Preliminary Activities
It is the student’s responsibility to apply for an internship position as they would for a full time job. Students may locate potential internship opportunities on their own, with their advisor’s assistance. Career Services and the Internship Coordinator can also assist in finding a suitable internship and locate website resources, but it is the student’s responsibility for securing a position. A current job does not qualify, unless there is a promotion or a special project. In most cases, students will go through an interview process and must have a resume prepared. Prior to accepting a job, the student must be certain that he/she meets all of the qualifications for an internship by meeting with the Internship Coordinator to discuss the employer, job description, and prerequisite completion. Once approval is granted, the student can register for the course by contacting the Registrar’s office. Note: Students cannot register for this course online. Under NO circumstances may you begin the internship without the internship coordinator’s approval.
In addition to the academic requirements, students need to complete 150 hours of work to earn 3 credits, and 300 hours of work to earn 6 credits for a semester.
The internship work hours must commence no later than 4 weeks into the semester, and all journals (submitted after every 25-30 hours), evaluations (3 supervisor and student), final paper, and assessment must be completed on time. If academic work is not completed as described in #2-7 below, the student will not pass the course. If there is an unforeseen problem with completing all mutually agreed upon job requirements with the work site supervisor in a semester time frame, it is the student’s responsibility to contact the Internship Coordinator to explain the situation and determine if a deferred grade is a reasonable request. A deferred grade may or may not be granted, depending on the situation. Other options that may be considered including reducing the number of credits for the semester, finding another internship, or dropping the original internship.
2. Preliminary Paperwork in Student and Work-Site Supervisor Packets
Students will copy the Student and Work-Site Supervisor Internship Packets that can be found on Canvas, and will complete basic information concerning the scope of the internship. Students will provide the appropriate packet for the Work Site Supervisor. It is important that both parties read the definition of academic internship, roles and responsibilities for academic internships, internship timeline, and liability insurance coverage. In addition, the registration forms and learning agreements must be completed by both parties before beginning the internship and submit them to the Internship Coordinator within the first four weeks of the semester. If paperwork is not received by the end of the fourth week of the semester, the Internship Coordinator will notify the student and suggest that the student drop the course.
If you are considering accepting an unpaid internship, please review these guidelines provided by the Department of Labor. Share these guidelines with the employer.
3. Journal Entries
Students will keep a journal of tasks performed for approximately every 25-30 hours of work. For a 3 credit internship, 5 journals are required, and for a 6 credit internship, 10 journals are required. The first part of the journal entry contains a summary of tasks performed, and is followed by a reflection on those tasks. Journal entries should be emailed to the Internship Coordinator upon completion of every 25-30 hours and the subject line should indicate the journal number (Journal #1, 2,….10). Do not wait to send journal entries until the end of the semester (they will receive zero points). If journal entries are not sent after every 25-30 hours of work, the student grade will automatically be reduced by 75% for the journal. You will be graded on both content and correct business writing. Each journal will be worth 20 points, 10 points for content (a summary of tasks performed and reflection) and 10 points for spelling and grammar.
4. Three Work-Site Supervisor Evaluations & Three Student Evaluations
There are three evaluations in each internship packet: preliminary (completed after 50 hours of work), mid-semester (completed half-way), and final evaluation (completed at the end). It is the student’s responsibility to submit their paperwork in a timely fashion by emailing them or placing them in the Internship Coordinator’s campus mailbox. Students need to provide deadline dates for the supervisor. The work-site supervisor can mail the evaluations directly to:
Mrs. Theresa Clemente
Penn State Wilkes-Barre
44 University Drive
Dallas, PA 18612
Each evaluation is worth 10 points. Student’s grade for the evaluations is based on the completion of the form and the proper timing of submitting the forms. If forms are submitted late, zero points will be earned.
5. Final Paper and Meeting
Students are required to prepare a written analytic summary report (8 to 12 pages in length for a 6-credit course and 4 to 6 pages for a 3-credit course), describing:
- the company
- your duties and responsibilities
- the value of the experience, and
- an evaluation of the experience.
The written report is due two days prior to the meeting scheduled during the last week of the semester. It is the students’ responsibility to make the appointment with the Internship Coordinator. At the meeting, students will have the opportunity to discuss the experience and ask any questions they may have. The goal of the final report is to demonstrate that real-world learning has taken place, and how it may be used in the future. You will be graded on both content and correct business writing. Deductions will be made for misspellings, incorrect grammar, and poor organization.
6. Internship Assessment Form
You are also required to complete an Internship Assessment Form, found on Canvas. Please complete the form and place it in the drop box once you have completed the form.
All internship paperwork must be completed by the last week of the semester to receive a grade for that semester. The paper/assessment is worth 80 points and the meeting is worth 20 points.
In the event that not all work hours and/or responsibilities have been completed as planned, the student may request a deferred grade. The Internship Coordinator should be consulted in this special circumstance prior to the last week of class. Deferred grades may be granted in special circumstances. The option is unavailable for students who have not completed journals, papers, and evaluations in a timely manner, and have not contacted the Internship Coordinator about a problem during the semester.
7. Meeting with Supervisor
During the semester, the work-site supervisor will be contacted to determine how the internship is progressing. If the student has a special request for additional meetings regarding specific circumstances, they need to contact the Internship Coordinator.
The student’s final letter grade is based upon successful completion of all aspects of the internship, the supervisor’s evaluation of the student’s job performance, and the instructor’s judgment of the student’s scholastic achievement.
|Assignment||Points (6 credits)||Points (3 credits)|
|5 or 10 Journal entries (20 points each)||200 points||100 points|
|3 Worksite Supervisor Evaluations||30 points||30 points|
|3 Student Evaluations||30 points||30 points|
|Final Paper/Assessment||80 points||80 points|
|Student final meeting with faculty||20 points||20 points|
|Total:||360 points||260 points|
|Letter Grade||Percentage||Points (6 credits)||Points (3 credits)|
|A||93-100||334-360 points||241-260 points|
|A-||90-92||324-333 points||234-240 points|
|B+||87-89||313-323 points||226-233 points|
|B||83-86||298-312 points||215-225 points|
|B-||80-82||288-297 points||208-214 points|
|C+||77-79||277-287 points||200-207 points|
|C||70-76||252-276 points||182-199 points|
|D*||60-69||216-251 points||156-181 points|
|F*||0-59||0-215 points||0-155 points|
- It is the Internship Coordinator’s job to help you succeed with this experience. Assistance can be provided with any phase of the course, including dressing for success on the interview, business etiquette, finding suitable employers that match your interests, difficult situations once you begin the internship, etc. But it is your responsibility to contact the Internship Coordinator for advice.
- This capstone experience is more than a job, but an opportunity to explore what you may want to do for a living in your future. No one expects you to “know it all” before you begin.
- The success of the experience is learning about yourself and your strengths and limitations, finding out what you like to do, as much as finding out what you don’t want from a position in the future.
- Be passionate about the experience, because an internship links your academics with the real business world.
- Many students have been offered full-time employment as a result of their internship experience. If they accept the offer, these students know what they are doing upon graduation and omit the job search process.