How to earn credit for ENSP386

How to earn credit for ENSP386

There  is no “class” associated with ENSP386.  Your practical experience, together with your reflection journals, meetings with your faculty advisor, timesheets, supervisor’s letter of evaluation, and final research paper comprise the academic requirements of ENSP386.  Most students will complete their internship activity in the summer, then we enroll them in ENSP386 the following fall semester.  However, it is possible for students to intern and take classes simultaneously during the academic year (spring or fall semester).  You will be awarded 3 credits for this experience. 


  • If you're doing a SUMMER internship; credit will be awarded in the summer or fall - June 14, 2024.  Please make an effort to submit your paper work before leaving campus, if possible.
  • If you're doing a FALL internship; credit will be awarded in the fall - TBD
  • If you're doing a SPRING internship; credit will be awarded in the spring - February 9, 2024

Please contact us in advance if you forsee a late proposal, e.g., your on-site supervisor is out of town during the first week of your internship. Proposals submitted later than two weeks into the start of the internship will be approved on a case-by-case basis only.  Please include a carefully-prepared explanation of your situation together with your proposal.

Follow the steps below for guidance on earning ENSP386 credit:

1. ENSP Internship Overview

ENSP386 provides Environmental Science and Policy (ENSP) students the opportunity to pursue a carefully monitored work experience for which academic credit can be given.  An internship includes intentional learning goals and requires that you reflect on what you are doing.  Ideally, it will help you make formal connections to concepts in your concentration; clarify your professional interests; and deepen your preparation for employment and/or graduate school.  With these goals in mind, you must develop an internship proposal that meets the approval of your advisor, the Director of ENSP, and a supervisor at the sponsoring organization.

2. Find and secure an internship

Students are responsible for finding their own internships.  You may respond to notices in the Advising Blog, utilize resources/ links on the ENSP website, or approach organizations directly.  Additionally, you may pursue the internship in a wide range of settings: public sector, private companies, or research labs; and, it may be on- or off-campus; paid or unpaid.  Consult with your advisor, the Director, and other faculty members about the types of internships appropriate to your concentration and academic/career interests. Search the ENSP website, Careers4Terps, the Office of Sustainability, and MORE!  

3. Identify a faculty member to serve as your ENSP386 Faculty Advisor.

It is your responsibility to seek out a faculty advisor for ENSP386.  This person may be your faculty advisor for your ENSP concentration (which is most common), but may also be a faculty member that specializes in your area of interest. You must ask them if they will be willing to serve in this role.  Identify this person early in the process!  Note: make sure you are identifying a faculty member, and not a staff member.

4. Prepare your proposal

Your ENSP386 Internship proposal will include:

    • Proposal Form & Coversheet, which contains:
    • At least six academic and/or career objectives related to the content of the internship
    • Description of work activities
    • Proposed academic research topic AND seven (7) examples of scholarly source materials for your term paper (including at least 3 peer-reviewed articles). Your research paper topic is of your choosing and should connect the content of your internship with the content of your concentration (and not necessarily what you did during your internship experience).  
    • Work commitment (including minimal weekly time commitment and total hours on-site)
    • An updated, 1-page resume
    • Consent & Release Form
    • all necessary signatures and contact information

You can refer to this Sample Proposal for ideas and inspiration

5. Submit your proposal

  1. Send your completed proposal to your faculty advisor and on-site supervisor for discussion and approval (and signatures).
  2. If you have an out-of-town internship, you can email your proposal to your on-site supervisor and ask him/her to email Angela Mazur-Gray with the statement: "I have read (your name's) internship proposal; and I agree to supervise (your name) and complete an internship evaluation."
  3. Bring the completed and signed, hard-copy (or emailed) proposal to Angela in Symons Hall room 0216.
  4. Angela will collate everything for final review 
  5. If and when your proposal is approved by ENSP, Angela will place you into ENSP386 for three (3) credits and send you an email confirmation (you will not add the course yourself). 

6. Complete the academic work for ENSP386

Remember: ENSP386 is not an actual "course."  Students earn credit by completing their internship activity, by meeting at least 3 times with their faculty advisor during the semester, and by completing all components of the Internship Packet:

    • A 10-12 page academic research paper with an annotated bibliography. Your research paper topic is of your choosing and should connect the content of your internship with the content of your concentration (and not necessarily what you did during your internship experience).  
      • See a sample internship paper HERE
      • Grading rubric for academic paper HERE.
    • A record of hours worked, i.e., your “time sheets,” with days/hours clearly marked and totaled.  You need at least 120 hours on-site to earn 3 academic credits.
    • A reflection journal (guidelines HERE)
    • An evaluation from your site supervisor. 
    • A newly-updated resume that now includes your internship experience.

Your Faculty Advisor for ENSP386 may use the ENSP GRADING SHEET to assign a final grade based on the high quality of your completed Internship Portfolio.  A complete packet should be submitted in hard-copy format, in a folder, and include the following documents:  your research paper and supporting documentation (weekly log, personal reflections, supervisor evaluation).  

Your grade in ENSP386 is based on the faculty advisor's assessment of your learning and performance in the internship.

Deadlines for submitting the complete Internship Packet to your faculty advisor:

    • December 1 (if earning credit in the fall) -or-
    • May 1 (if earning credit in the spring) 


Be sure to write a thank-you note to your on-site supervisor!

8. Update your resume

Although not required for credit, don’t forget to add your new experience to your resume!  Take advantage of the services offered by the Career Center for help in updating your resume.