The semester London Internship Program offers students two options: 1) placement in a 6 credit (24 hours/week) internship with a company/organization, or 2) placement in a 6 credit community service/non-governmental organization. In addition to the internship and Service Learning options, the program offers a range of complementary coursework for a total of 12-15 credits.
During the summer, students can earn 3-6 credits during each of its 6-week summer sessions. Because of visa restrictions, students who wish to intern will earn 6 internship credits (which includes the required internship class) and will take one of the other classes (3 cr) for a total of 9 credits. Students may also opt not to intern and take 1 - 2 classes (3 credits each).
Internship placements are individually arranged by the London Internship Coordinator. The academic context for the internship credit consists of a course, "Learning Through Internships," which meets each week. In the course, students will have the opportunity to discuss various aspects of working in London and learn about other facets of British culture. Students will be expected to keep a comprehensive journal and to prepare a final integrative paper on the internship experience. Grades will be assigned by the faculty coordinator.
The Internship Director will provide an orientation on working in the U.K. as well as support services on a continual basis throughout the term. Placements are available in a wide range of sites, including businesses, corporations, art galleries and museums, government agencies, publishing companies, radio stations, non-profit organizations, and many more. Specific placements depend on the background, training, interests and abilities of students, as well as their success in securing the internship in the final interview held during the first few days in London. Internships are not paid.
Service Learning Opportunities
Unlike in an internship, where the focus may be on professional development, the primary focus is to serve local communities and to develop the themes of the course whilst reflecting on the project goals in an academic setting. The service-learning placements will be assigned by CAPA and the projects will meet needs identified by the community, to be determined by the professor and the organization. Students will benefit both personally and academically from this experience in terms of reciprocity and co-learning. While there may be opportunities to gain professional skills at the placement, the primary focus must always be on the communities being served.
The accompanying service learning course is multidisciplinary course with a sociological focus. It is designed to engage students in critical thought and reflection on urban inequalities in London. It will explore the historical, sociological, and political context of community and service in the UK. It will examine in-depth certain groups' exclusion from access to health care, education, finance, language, political representation, and combine classroom learning with practical exposure in placements to create knowledge and understanding of community service. Three key interrelated themes will be followed throughout the semester in order to provide a structured reflection on questions which affect society today: urban life, social landscapes and city issues; multiculturalism and Immigration - population, changing cultures, identities, alienation; and inequalities; and welfare marginalized groups, poverty, housing and homelessness.
Internship and service learning students take two or three 3-credit courses in addition to the internship course/service learning course for a total of 12-15 credits. Courses are taught to the U.S. students by British faculty and visiting U.S. faculty.
London is not only the capital of Great Britain, but the largest city in Europe and one of the three hubs of the European Union. Its political and economic importance is matched by its significance as one of the world's foremost cultural and artistic centers. London has many faces: it is rich in tradition and history, filled with monuments, museums and landmarks; it is the birthplace of punk, of rave culture, of Britpop; it is also home to immigrants from former British colonies such as India, Pakistan, Nigeria, Jamaica, and Malaysia, which makes it a truly modern international city with a complex multicultural society. Thanks to an excellent public transportation system, London is surprisingly easy to get to know, and the many parks and quiet squares offer respite from the bustling urban atmosphere.
The London Internship Program is hosted by CAPA (Centers for Academic Programmes Abroad), which is located in the South Kensington district, close to many sites such as the Victoria and Albert Museum, Hyde Park, and Harrod's. CAPA provides full support for the program, including housing, classes, internships, orientations, field trips and general information.
Students are housed with other U.S. student participants in shared flats with bedrooms, and kitchen and bath facilities. Most bedrooms are double or triple occupancy.