Sociology Department Internships


Internships offer an excellent opportunity for students to leave college prepared for the next chapter in life, whether that means going on for more education or entering the workforce. They also serve as capstones fulfilling essential culminating course credits in the Sociology and Criminal Justice majors. The Sociology Department is working to streamline the process of setting up internships, and the steps outlined below should provide what you need. If you have questions, feel free to contact us!

Additional Information

Setting up an internship

LEAP Deadline: September 1 (for Spring/Summer)

PELS Deadline: March 1 (for Summer/Fall), September 1 (for Spring)

The first step in setting up an internship is registering with the department. We have two programs for you to consider. You can specify your preferences on the registration form. You will initiate the process of setting up the internship by registering with the department for one of these two programs.

LEAP (Law Enforcement Academy Preparation)

As part of their undergraduate curriculum, Criminal Justice students may wish to participate in LEAP (Law Enforcement Academy Preparation) at SUNY Oneonta. This program incorporates coursework in the Criminal Justice major with additional experiences related to law enforcement careers. The goal is to place students in a law enforcement-related internship, which may include participation in a Law Enforcement Academy. This internship will serve as the capstone course for students in the LEAP program.

Register for the LEAP Internship

PELS (Program for Experiential Learning in Sociology)

Any Sociology or Criminal Justice major is eligible to apply for an experiential learning experience or internship, which will satisfy their requirement for a senior capstone experience. Sociology-Human Service majors are required to complete an internship, while other majors may opt to complete an internship as their capstone course. Students should meet with their advisors to determine the best course of action. Experiential learning is most beneficial for students anticipating careers or advanced studies in fields that value or expect students to have internships before graduation. For example, MSW (Master's of Social Work) programs highly value such experiences.

Note: Students interested in LEAP should not submit this form.

Register for the PELS Internship

Complete within two weeks of the Application Deadline (see step 1)

After registering with the department for the PELS or LEAP programs, students will work with one of the Internship Coordinators (listed below) to identify a placement. Students may initiate the placement but will need approval from the Coordinator. Internships that are not local will require the student to initiate the placement (most summer internships).

Here are some brochures of possible placements in the local area:

Sociology Internships

Criminal Justice Internships

Once Michele (the Department Administrative Assistant) receives placement information, she will fill out the undergraduate internship application/agreement form with you. The syllabus for the experience will be provided by the Internship Coordinator.

Internship Coordinators:

Dr. Fida Mohammad (Summer sessions),

Prof. Ann Marie Mills (Fall and Spring semesters),

Complete within 1 week of completing step 2 (above)

Once you have received your internship application and syllabus (LEAP or PELS) from Michele, you are ready to apply for credit using the Handshake system through the Career Development Center. The Handshake system is used to process approvals and signatures digitally. Once all approvals are processed, your internship will be ready and appear on your schedule. It is not ready if you do not see it on your schedule.

The signature approval process in Handshake includes the following:

  • Faculty coordinator
  • Worksite supervisor/coordinator
  • Faculty coordinator
  • Dept. chair
  • Dean
  • Career Development Center

Here is a helpful video discussing the process: click here.

Students can go into their Handshake account at any time to see the status of their application.

Students and Administrators are the only ones who can see who has approved and signed the forms.

Apply for Internship Credit (Handshake)

Complete immediately following step 3 (depending on availability)

Participating in internships can incur costs, such as expenses associated with traveling to and from a location. There are some potential sources of funding for students in internships. Please visit the website for more information on internship funding opportunities:

Apply for funding

Internship Guidelines

An internship is registered under SOCL 4097: Field Experiences in Sociology. This is also true for Criminal Justice internships.

Internship opportunities are available to all Sociology and Criminal Justice students, but Human Services students have a required internship. Internships serve as a culminating experience and capstone course.

The most important thing with your internship is to start the process early. Internships can be tricky to put together and the process takes time. Please observe the posted deadlines.

SUNY Oneonta policy dictates that the paperwork for the internship must be completed before starting the internship.

Internship waivers

Human Services majors may be able to waive the internship requirement. If you have at least 120 hours of volunteer or paid work experience in the appropriate work environment, you may request a waiver by sending a letter to the department chair at the below address:

Chair, Department of Sociology
SUNY Oneonta
108 Ravine Pkwy.
Oneonta, NY 13820

You should also have a letter from your supervisor indicating your terms of employment, work capacity, and official duties sent to the same address. If an internship was conducted for college credit at another institution, check to see if the credits can be transferred. The necessary criterion is: substantial professional responsibilities, minimum of 120 hours of work experience, and conducted under the supervision of an accredited college or university. An internship conducted at a high school cannot transfer or be used to waive the internship requirement in department programs.

Note: This waiver does not count as credit; other coursework may be needed to complete the credit requirement in the major.

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