Internships & Experiential Learning
For-credit vs. Not-for-credit Internships
For-Credit Internships (when students earn academic credit towards their academic degree while interning) have specific eligibility requirements and procedures. Methodist University has established minimum internship requirements for academic credit. Building upon those guidelines, each academic department determines any additional requirements for their specific internship program. This information can be found in the academic catalog and/or course syllabus.
Not-for-Credit Internships are completed by the student independently to gain real-world experience.
Paid vs. Unpaid Internships
Internships can be paid or unpaid. Both can be valuable learning experiences. It is important to know that the Department of Labor’s U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) restricts an employer’s use of unpaid internships. This Act applies to businesses that have two or more employees directly engaged in interstate commerce as well as annual sales of $500,000 or more. The FLSA requires “for profit” employers to pay employees for their work. Interns and students, however, may not be “employees” under the FLSA – in which case the FLSA does not require compensation for their work. More specific information can be found in the U.S. Department of Labor Fact Sheet #71: Internship Programs Under The Fair Labor Standards Act, updated January 2018.
Requirements to Post an Internship with MU
We welcome the opportunity to work with employers on behalf of our students. By hosting Methodist University interns, you will enhance the lives of students and have a direct impact on them as professionals.
Employers can post internship opportunities with Methodist University if they
- have been in operation for at least one calendar year,
- can provide a meaningful learning experience for the student intern, and
- can provide an on-site supervisor/mentor that meets with the student intern daily or weekly.
If you are ready to move forward with your internship, please register with Handshake to request an intern.
International Students & CPT
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is a form of work authorization that allows F-1 students to engage in an off-campus academic internship or employment that is a required or an integral part of their academic curriculum, as stated in the University catalog.
International students attending Methodist University on an F-1 visa can only engage in and be approved for CPT if it is part of their curriculum (required) OR if academic credit is being received (if the internship is not mandatory for graduation from Methodist University).
CPT Student Eligibility and Restrictions
- Students must have completed one academic year in valid F-1 status. Transfer students who have maintained valid F-1 status at another institution will be given credit for the one academic year of valid F-1status if they transferred their SEVIS record to Methodist University.
- Students must have obtained an internship that is directly related to their major or minor.
- Students must be enrolled in an internship course and receive academic credit during the academic term the internship will take place or practical training must be a part of the curriculum and required for graduation.
- Undergraduate students engaging in CPT during the academic year must maintain full-time enrollment (i.e., 12 s.h. day credits). During the summer, undergraduate students engaging in CPT must register for at least one credit of an internship course.
- Students are restricted to working no more than 20 hours per week during the Fall and Spring semesters. There are no limits to the number of hours students can work during the summer for CPT.
- Students must apply for CPT work authorization each semester they wish to engage in off-campus employment.
- Students cannot begin working off-campus (including orientations or training) until after they have received CPT approval from the Methodist University International Program Office.
Note: Interdisciplinary (IDS) Internship Courses are available for students who do not have an existing Internship Course in their academic major or minor.
Contact the Methodist University International Programs Office for more information.