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California State University, Long Beach
Department of Sociology
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Sociology Department Internships (Course: Sociology 495)

The department offers internships as a way of providing students an opportunity to gain supervised work experience in the community. The internship course is an elective that allows students to get structured work experience at community-based organizations. Internships are an important part of our applied curriculum that offers students an opportunity to acquire practical skills and work experience in the community. There is a diverse range of community agencies that provide students exciting opportunities to get course credit by volunteering. Students have an opportunity to apply skills that they learn in the classroom to problems in the community as well as to learn new skills out in the community. Students work on site for an agency and stay in close contact with their faculty internship supervisor.

Internships also allow students an opportunity to get valuable career guidance. Students have an opportunity to work with different types of professionals and to learn more about requirements for degrees and licenses for different professions. Students can gain valuable experience from working with professionals and from contact with different agencies in the community. Internships can expose students to different careers and help them decide if they’re suited for a particular career. Internships often allow students to form valuable social networks. Since the inception of the internship program, a number of students have been hired by agencies where they’ve interned. Others have been hired by other agencies in jobs that they’ve learned about through their internships. In addition, students often gain valuable experience by working as a member of a team and by learning the values of team membership in community problem solving.

Students who have done internships often have found it to be a highly rewarding experience. Many have commented that they feel like they’ve made some social contribution to the betterment of society and that they have made a difference.

Students are sometimes interested in internships but are not sure that they are ready to make a semester-long commitment. A good way to get a better idea of what internships are like is to make an initial short-term commitment. Many of our regular courses include volunteer and service learning assignments as required or optional components.

Once you decide that you want to enroll in an internship, you’ll want to contact an agency. 

Looking for an internship? Click on this link to view a list of available interships.