Expand your Mechanical Engineering
Program with Internships

Registering for Internships for Credit

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When you are ready to pursue an internship, please review the internship information for students and the steps presented below for registering for an internship for credit and for ensuring a successful internship experience. Your advisor will be happy to answer your questions about preparing, conducting, and completing your internship.

Students majoring in Mechanical Engineering at WSU Tri-Cities may earn academic credit by registering for ME 495 – Internship in Mechanical Industry. This course is graded Satisfactory/Fail (S/F). The Mechanical Engineering Faculty review and decide upon  individual students’ petitions to count 6 credits of ME 495 towards one ME technical elective, particularly when these internship credits allow students to gain new ME knowledge.

Students interested in earning academic credits for their internship experience must receive course enrollment approval from the Internship Coordinator before starting their internship experience. Normally, the Internship Coordinator is the Program Chair, unless specified otherwise. When corresponding with the Internship Coordinator and their advisor about an internship, students should, please, always place “ME 495 – Internship – Full Name″ in the subject of their e-mail.

Students register for ME 495 as they would for any other course. Internship credit at the end of a semester may only be awarded for work completed during that semester, including summer. If students enroll in ME 495 during the summer, they pay the corresponding per-credit summer tuition, www.summer.wsu.edu. Students will also be charged the usual fees, except that if the internship takes place outside the Tri-Cities, local fees such as those for recreation center and health and wellness will be refunded. (Advisors can provide information on the refund process.)

As students in our Internship / Co-operative Education program, you will be advised to  follow the ten-step process described in this page to ensure a successful completion of your professional experience. This process consists of three phases.

  1. Preparation for the Experience (1-4)
  2. Expectations During the Experience – Site Visit (5-7)
  3. Evaluation After the Experience (8-10)

The details are presented below.

Successful Internship Process

Preparation for the Experience
  1. Obtain an internship employment offer or conduct an internship at your current place of work. Ensure that your internship will be supervised by a Mechanical Engineer or other similarly qualified professional.
  2. Complete and sign your Internship Proposal, using the Internship Proposal template. Please note that the Internship Proposal must be completed, submitted, and approved before the internship work may start!

    The Internship Proposal serves two purposes:

    • it provides general information about the internship
    • it articulates learning goals for the internship

    In the Internship Proposal, students:

    • describe their planned internship thoroughly
    • include contact information for themselves and their internship supervisor
    • provide location, dates, duration, and location of the internship

    The internship goals should be expressed in the form of a plan that will provide students with work-site learning, to justify the credits that will be earned in ME 495. The learning plan should describe the proposed professional development that should take place during the internship, with a focus on the acquisition of specific skills and abilities.

    Request your Internship Supervisor to sign your Internship Proposal as well.

  3. Submit your completed Internship Proposal in PDF format to the Internship Coordinator by e-mail.
  4. After receiving approval from the Internship Coordinator, register for ME 495 for up to 3 credits at a time.
Expectations during the Experience - Site Visit
  1. Begin your internship, carrying out the work described in the Internship Proposal. Throughout the internship, keep a concise journal, with entries on each internship day, of:
    • tasks attempted
    • difficulties encountered
    • resolutions applied
    • discussions conducted with supervisor and/or team members
    • reflections you made about your experience
  2. Submit your journal by e-mail to the Internship Coordinator at the end of each internship week. All the weekly journals will have to be added to the final Internship Report as an appendix.
  3. Schedule a “Site Visit” for the Internship Coordinator, who will meet with you and your supervisor at the internship site. The purpose of the site visit is to assess your internship, as detailed in  the Faculty Site Visit form used by the Internship Coordinator during the visit. The site visit will have to take place toward the end of the internship and before the end of the semester.
Evaluation after the Experience
  1. Complete your Internship Report, using the Internship Report template. The report should be single spaced, with each section thoroughly addressed. The work described in the report should correlate with the work proposed in the proposal.
  2. Before the end of the semester, submit your Internship Report by e-mail in PDF format to both the Internship Coordinator and your supervisor. Request your supervisor to send by e-mail, before the end of the semester, his or her comments about your internship work to the Internship Coordinator.
  3. After reviewing and approving the Internship Report and before “finals week” the Internship Coordinator will conduct with you an internship debriefing, which normally lasts half an hour. Shortly thereafter, the Internship Coordinator will issue your ME 495 grade.
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