Career Services

Internships and Work Experience

The Internship and Work Experience course is designed for students to formally structure learning and professional development goals into their current job, internship or volunteer position and earn academic credit doing so. This academic credit is CSU transferable and can also be applied toward various Career Education degrees and certificates at Cabrillo College.

Employers Recruiting for Jobs and Internships

Students will learn to identify and develop skills, abilities and knowledge areas necessary for growth in their professional journey. With the help of their instructor and employer, students will develop individualized learning goals that will improve their ability to perform and grow in their profession. Along the way students will receive advising and support to monitor progress. At the end of the course students will evaluate their progress and complete a capstone project that propels them to transfer their learning and experience into future success. Grading for this course is Pass / No Pass.

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Requirements and Steps for Enrollment

  • Obtain a paid or unpaid Job, Internship or Volunteer Position. Confirm agreement with employer for participation.

  • Determine Unit Value of course you wish to take. The number of units for a course depends on hours worked or volunteered. Students can choose between 1 - 4 units

  • Schedule and attend a one on one orientation meeting with the Internship and Work Experience Instructor

Paid Internships or Work Experience (75 hours/unit)

75 hours = 1 unit

150 hours = 2 units

225 hours = 3 units

300 hours = 4 units

Unpaid Internships or Work Experience (60 hours/unit)

60 hours = 1 unit

120 hours = 2 units

180 hours = 3 units

240 hours = 4 units


Requirements and Steps for Course Completion

  • Once enrolled and course orientation is completed: Attend job or internships as assigned and begin documenting hours. Complete initial round of assignments.

  • Within two weeks: Meet with the instructor to finalize individual learning objectives for the course.

  • Approximately halfway through completing required hours: Provide a written progress update and participate in a progress meeting with the instructor.

  • Upon completion of work experience hours, complete final round of assignments and capstone project.

Additional Specific Information Regarding Course Assignments

In addition to completing the required work hours on the job to receive credit, students will complete the following assignments and activities to receive a passing grade for the course. Below is a brief description of each as well as an approximation of time needed for completion.

This document communicates the specific roles for employer, student and college for course completion

This document specifies scope of student job/internship including the roles, responsibilities, qualifications, wage and schedule.

This assignment requires the student to personally assess their professional technical and non-technical skills, abilities and knowledge.

This assignment is done with support of instructor to document specific, measurable goals to develop professional skills, abilities and knowledge

This assignment and meeting allows for formal communication between instructor and student to assess progress and address any challenges that may arise

This meeting allows formal communication between instructor and supervisor to assess progress and address any challenges that may arise

This document is to track hours necessary to complete course requirements.

This assignment requires the student to personally assess their professional technical and non-technical skills, abilities and knowledge develop during their work experience

This project is designed for you to reflect and analyze your work experience so that you can effectively communicate and transfer your learnings to advance your future educational and career goals.

Frequently Asked Questions


No. The word internship is sometimes loosely defined, but an internship is tailored to a student or recent graduate in a particular field of study. An internship provides hands-on, supervised job training by a professional in the field.

An internship will identify specific learning outcomes with clear action steps needed to achieve outcomes. This may mean performing job duties that help the student demonstrate skills for which they are being trained

In addition, an internship is a finite placement with a clear start date, finish date, and schedule determined upon hiring. Internships can be paid or unpaid. They can be as short as a few weeks or up to a year in length, internships typically fall in the 3-6 month range. Duration can be determined by the employer.

Students who already have an internship, job, or volunteer position can enroll for credit during the first 12 weeks of Fall and Spring semester and the first 6 weeks of Summer session.

Students often use the Incomplete Process if the hours needed to complete their course carries over past the end of the semester they are enrolled in. Students taking an Incomplete grade will make a contract with the instructor to identify the completion date for the course.

Yes. Once you enroll, you can begin counting hours toward completion of your unit requirements.

The Internship and Work Experience instructor can provide advising to assist with this. Students can also refer to the degree and certificate requirements online or meet with an academic counselor for requirements.

Yes, this course can be repeated. Students can enroll in up to 6 units of Cooperative Work Experience and/or 12 units of Occupational Work Experience.

Yes, employers are required to:

  • Complete the Employer/Student Contact form
  • Review and sign the Cabrillo College/Employer Memorandum of Agreement
  • Provide a job description
  • Assist in the development of student learning objectives
  • Meet with the Cabrillo Internship and Work Experience Instructor at the worksite
  • Complete a short performance evaluation
  • Sign off on time card

See Resources page for documents.

Occupational Work Experience Courses are assigned to specific programs. Credit for these courses specifically relate to program instruction and outcomes as well as count toward degree and certificate completion. General Work Experience is for students wishing to gain credit and experience but not connected to a specific college program.

Cooperative Work Experience Education. This is the technical term for the program as defined by CA State Ed Code.

Yes, most students participate in local internships and jobs but many opportunities exist worldwide, and earning credit is an option.

To get started and enroll contact Matt Weis