​Graduate Internships

Go beyond classroom learning with real-world doing.

For Leadership Studies graduate students, a little on-the-ground experience goes a long way. It's a way to start making a difference within your field of interest, working with a nonprofit, school or other organizations whose mission aligns with your passions and your career interests.

We work with students to help them determine what opportunities exist and which might be the best fit. Students are encouraged to choose an internship they'll find challenging, rewarding and instructive.

Take the reins and start arranging your internship

The responsibility and the rewards are in students' hands when it comes to finding an appropriate placement. SOLES' Director of Field Experience and your academic advisors are here to support and advise, and students take it from there. You'll complete your application and submit it on time, manage your own corresponding coursework and hours, enroll in the internship course and arrange a triad meeting with the internship instructor and site supervisor.

Learn about the steps to find and select your internship—and get it approved.

Know your options—and make a great choice

Selecting a site is the most important step in the process. The SOLES Director of Field Experiences will share the information and advice you need to get started, incorporating input from your advisor.

To see the full list of opportunities, go to our internship opportunities (sites) page, or go to https://sandiego.joinhandshake.com/login.

You can also visit USD's Career Development Office for more resources.

Keep timing in mind

The site selection process should occur in the semester prior to the one in which you plan to register for your internship. This is important because the 14-week semester flies by quickly, and you'll need to be sure that you and your field supervisor agree on the goals and objectives for your work together. Students who aren't prepared in time may need to defer their internship until a later semester.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Do I get paid for doing an internship?
  • Which course number do I register for?
  • What if I have not heard back from the person at the site where I want to do an internship?
  • Is there a possibility that my internship will turn into an employment opportunity in the future?
  • May I do my internship here at USD or at my current workplace?
  • What if I can not finish all of my required internship hours in one semester?