An internship is an experience where students, while enrolled in college, can gain realistic learning experiences through work. The internship must have educational value for the students employed. The work experience may be paid or unpaid.
There are no class meetings for students enrolled in an internship class. Students are asked to complete online class assignments and class time is spent at the internship site. Students are required to work a minimum number of hours to receive college unit credit (see Work Hours Required below).
The Internship Program is available to continuing SMC students. A continuing student is one who has enrolled and successfully completed a minimum of 6 units during the previous fall/spring semester.
NEED HELP FINDING AN INTERNSHIP?: Come visit us during our drop-in hours or call to set up an appointment at
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Career Service Center & Internship Program Lab Hours
The Internship Program is part of the Career Services Center of SMC. We are located in Counseling Village near the Counseling Transfer Center, just east of the bicycle park on Pearl Street, (310) 434-4337. Many services are provided through the Career Services Center including resume review, job and internship leads, job and internship search assistance, internship course credit and career counseling. Please go to the Career Services Center website
for further information.
HOURS OF THE CAREER SERVICES CENTER: Mon-Thurs. 8 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.; Fridays 8 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Our center closes at 1pm on Fridays during the summer and winter sessions.
Internship classes are graded on a credit/no credit basis.
Internship Instructors will take the following criteria into consideration:
- Attendance at Internship Orientation meeting (for first time SMC interns).
- Adequate completion of learning objectives.
- Timely completion of required paperwork and online assignments.
- Working the required number of hours for units of credit (see below for requirements).
Work Hours Required
In order to satisfy the requirements for your internship, you are required to work a specific number of hours to earn internship unit credit. You may work more than the minimum. Please note that your internship working hours do not count until you are enrolled in the internship class and the semester has begun.
Each unit of college credit requires 60 hours of unpaid (volunteer) work or 75 hours of paid work per semester. For example:
Summary of the Internship Process
- Find internship: The Internship Program will help you in finding an internship if you are a current SMC student.
- Attend Internship Orientation: This one-time, 1-hour meeting at the start of the semester, covers all the details of the internship, and is required.
- Write Learning Objectives: Identify three new or expanded learning objectives (statements of what you want to learn during your internship).
- Enroll in an Internship Class.
- Participate in the Internship and complete online requirements: Maintain contact with your internship instructor and complete requested assignments.
- Complete Learning Objectives.
- Keep track of work hours.
Units of Credit and Transferability
For most people, the reason to participate in an internship is the value of the experience to their lives and future careers. But a side benefit is the elective credits that will count toward the Associate of Arts Degree. Internship units are also transferable to California State University system, but not to the University of California or University of Southern California systems.
While the units are not transferable to some colleges, the internship experience is likely to enhance students' applications to these colleges, or any college.
Many employers require that students be enrolled in an internship class in order to cover liability while the student is at the work site on an unpaid internship.
Internship classes are open to all continuing Santa Monica College students (defined as those who have completed at least 6 units the previous fall/spring semester). Some internships will require that students already have specific skills or educational background in order to qualify.
See "How to Enroll"
for step-by-step details on going through the Internship Program.