The cooperative education program provides students with the opportunity to hold academically related internships and gain work experience as a part of their college educational programs. These internships are provided either as part of faculty-designed coordinated studies programs or group contracts, or they can be sponsored through the individualized contract mode. Special forms for documenting internship learning can be obtained through the APEL office.
The APEL office exists to help make it possible for:
1. Students to arrange and to complete successfully the internships they are interested in doing and qualified to do, within the framework of pertinent institutional policies and applicable local, state and federal laws;
2. Faculty to plan, arrange for and implement internship components of coordinated studies programs and group contracts; and
3. The community to gain access to and make appropriate use of college resources through participation in the internship program.
The internship program is a highly visible component of Evergreen's academic offerings. As such, a system of internal checks and balances is needed to make optimal use of the internship program as a learning resource while, at the same time, meeting our obligations under the law and maintaining the program's integrity, both on- and off-campus. Because this process requires advanced planning, deadlines are established quarterly. To accomplish this, a set of institutional policies and procedures have been implemented and are carried forward by the APEL office in order to:
1. Assure that a student is "ready" for an internship and for the particular internship of interest;
2. Avoid duplication or potential duplication of credit;
3. Try to ensure that a student won't receive credit for types of learning ordinarily not credited by Evergreen (e.g., routine clerical work);
4. Ensure that a student doesn't exceed the ordinary institutional limit of 48 quarter-hours for internship-related credit toward an Evergreen degree; (Opportunity to petition under extraordinary circumstances for up to 64 hours does exist.)
5. Avoid the possibility of awarding credit for "doing one's ordinary job," i.e., for performing the ongoing position for which one had the qualifications at the time of hiring;
6. Support efforts of mature, employed students to arrange with their employers for learning opportunities which can result in new learning comparable to that for which credit is normally awarded at Evergreen; and
7. Assure individual internship and total program compliance with applicable local, state and federal laws and regulations.
Because of the factors mentioned above, it is essential that all internship arrangements be done with the full knowledge and cooperation of the Academic Advising Office (formerly known as APEL).