Internships are a crucial part of experiential education — giving you the exposure, training, and mentorship necessary for a successful career in a highly competitive job market.
Florida Southern College is the only private institution of higher education in the state of Florida to affiliate with The Washington Center.
Don’t wait until after you graduate to gain experience in your field. Our students intern around the globe with Fortune 500 companies.
10th Judicial Circuit Office of the Public Defender
I worked on a murder case and summarized 600 pages of discovery for an attorney. I loved feeling like a part of the team. I was responsible for outlining what happened at the scene of the murder. When I went to the crime scene I played out what happened. I explained to the murder attorneys what the discrepancies were in each persons depositions. It was amazing.
During the murder case I worked on, I was able to compile a list of neighbors who swore that they saw certain things and made a list of it on a map of the neighborhood. When I got to the crime scene, I walked to each neighbors house to see how accurate their sworn depositions were. I found a huge discrepancy with one of the neighbors and made a note of it for the attorney. The discrepancy was that one neighbor said their surveillance camera saw the entire thing, but when I went to that particular surveillance camera I noticed it was blocked by trees. I told the attorney who praised my thinking and ability to think of small things like that.
Center for Injury and Prevention at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia
My favorite aspect about my internship was getting to work with so many people in different types of research jobs. My office prided itself on being diverse and interdisciplinary. It was so awesome to see engineers, physicians, nurses, and researchers from all different backgrounds work together on injury science research projects. The two co-directors of the center were female engineers who I now definitely view as personal role models. I was never dismissed as just an intern; everyone in the office was so excited to have us for the summer and get us involved in everything possible. Also, I had never spent a lot of time in Philadelphia before, so it was fun to live in and explore a new city for the summer!
My advisor, Dr. Patrick Smith, encouraged me to apply to REU programs to gain more research experience. I filled out an application online, asked my professors for letters of recommendation, and wrote an essay about the project and researchers I hoped to work with over the summer. A few weeks later I was contacted and told I was a finalist. I then had a phone interview with the woman who ended up being my mentor, and a few days later I received an email saying I was accepted.
National Cancer Institute
As part of the Laboratory of Tumor Immunology and Biology, my research focused on immunotherapy for the treatment of cancer.
I worked on chordoma, a rare cancer that my father passed away from which is only being studied in a handful of labs worldwide. I looked at ways to combine radiation therapy (a standard of care for Chordoma) with Erbitux (cetuximab), an FDA approved monoclonal antibody. My research found that radiation sensitizes tumor cells to cetuximab treatment, providing the rationale for a study to evaluate the efficacy of Cetuximab and Radiation for chordoma.
Kansas State University
My faculty mentor, Dr. Smith, recommended that I look into summer research programs to gain additional experience before applying for graduate school, so I searched for summer research programs in my field of interest, behavioral neuroscience. I came across the application at Kansas State and was very interested in the lab there.
We designed a task to parse out three individual components of episodic-like memory in rats (what, where, and when), but with the current design, we believed we were only see the utilization of two components. My graduate research mentor and I sat down and brainstormed how we could alter the task to correctly parse out the third component. After reading many journal articles and thinking critically about the issue at hand, I proposed an idea to implement in the task to look at the third component. We altered the task to reflect the idea, which allowed us to further analyze the third component and perfect the task.
My lab members were very open and accepting, and made me feel like a vital member of the lab from the very beginning. I went into work every day knowing that I was going to be challenged intellectually and pushed to do the best research possible. This has helped me, not only as a researcher, but also in my everyday life. My summer research experience greatly increased my knowledge of my major. Most importantly, I was able to take the techniques and procedures I have learned in my lectures and utilize them myself. It is one thing to read about Pavlov utilizing classical conditioning, but when you use the techniques yourself, you gain a deeper and more profound knowledge and respect for the field.
Washington, District of Columbia
MedStar Washington Hospital Center - 5E Oncology/Hematology
I enjoyed the patient interaction. I developed new skills due to the high level of acuity and the rigor of the unit. I thrived living in a big city and taking the metro (subway) to work everyday. However, above all I enjoyed developing a passion and love for oncology nursing.
The most challenging portion of my externship was the oncology portion of this field. Oncology nursing is a intense subject that we go over senior year of nursing school. Therefore, before beginning the externship I taught myself the oncology unit of our nursing program to better prepare for the type of unit I was on. Overtime I became increasingly familiar with the chemotherapeutic agents being used and began to recognize the adverse effects and the nursing interventions for each. This was a challenging unit to be on; however, it pushed me and I am forever grateful for that.
When I was a freshman at FSC, I dreamed of having the opportunity of doing a summer nurse externship. The experiences gained at these internships is priceless. As soon as applications opened, I was applying to programs all over the country. During spring break of my junior year, I drove from Lakeland to Washington D.C. to interview for a position at one of my top five choices for programs. Four days after my interview, I received my offer to become a Student Nurse Extern on the Oncology/Hematology unit at the largest metropolitan hospital in Washington D.C.
Defense Forensic Science Center
My favorite part of this summer experience was learning about all of the techniques used to process evidence and the vast number of ways criminals can be caught. The most challenging part was understanding all of the detailed scientific concepts and procedures used to analyze evidence. For example, I was given a mock crime scene to investigate and I was able to use DNA analysis to conclude that although witnesses only reported seeing two people at the crime scene, there was, in fact, a third.
The U.S. Army Cadet Command releases a list of internships to ROTC programs across the country. There is an application process in which you select three that you are interested in. You also have to participate in an interview with the Profesor of Militaryscience, who is in charge of the ROTC program. Then a board selects which internship you will attend.
Trash Mountain Project and Armor Fe Esperanza (EFA)
In Honduras, my team and I built a home for a family previously living on the city trash dump. We worked with EFA, which is a free school for children in every grade, and it provides education, clothing, and meals. I went to Honduras through Ridge Point Community Church. Each year it sends a team on a mission trip, and this past summer it was with Trash Mountain Project.
I knew it was my turn to make a difference in a family’s life! I enjoy helping family members change their lives for the better. One family of three that I worked with — Antonio, Datiana and Reyna — has been living in a home made out of trash from the dump. Datiana, the youngest, has been unable to attend school because she has had to help her family work. Helping all of them get to a better place and give Datiana better opportunities was what I enjoyed most! The most challenging part for me was not staying longer.
While building the home, I connected deeply with Datiana and found out that her favorite color is pink. We eventually saved enough money to paint one of the panels in her room pink. It was so exciting to see that happen! Psychology classes at FSC helped me understand different cultures in comparison to that of the United States and the western world.
Home of the Sparrow & Family Health Partnership Clinic
Mchenry/Crystal Lake, Illinois
I had to both apply and interview for two positions. I found the shelter and the clinic through searching in need shelters in my area and off of the recommendations from the hospital staff I had previously volunteered with.
I volunteered at a home for domestic abuse victims and a female health clinic near my home every week. My role was to tutor these women so that they were able to finally pass the GED at the end of their sessioEmily McPartlinns with me!
I enjoyed being able to actually make an impact through volunteering. Sometimes in a clinical setting, you don’t feel like you’re actually participating in the establishments mission, but in these settings I was able to lend the knowledge and experience I had for the betterment of my own community. Being underqualified to teach some of the subjects was a challenge I had to outsource to become better. Making activities for the one dyslexic women in my group was challenging and required patience and creativity to see something I find natural in a different light, and then create a learning system based off of something I cannot experience.
I am now more compassionate and patient and appreciate the opportunities I was set up with much more now than I did before this summer. Simple things like being able bodied and mentally sound are things I did not fully appreciate before my tutoring and clinical experience this summer. This relates to my career goals or being a health care provider, though not necessarily my major.
Here are some of the outstanding internships our students have recently completed across the country and around the world.
The main part of my internship was work with a crew of 4-5 other researchers to complete the National Rivers and Streams Assessment (NRSA) created by the EPA. We traveled around Florida to assess different streams and rivers and collect all samples and measurements we could.
Developed working knowledge of financial and personnel management demands of a small business, learned and applied customer relations skills, observed management strategies specific to a small business.
Participated in field operations. Knocked on doors, canvassed polling places, and waved signs for grassroots campaigning.
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Gianny Rexach '20 talks about how getting an internship helped define her career path, ...