Career Services

Employer Internship Information

The internship program at Viterbo is one component of an extensive career planning process available to students through the Career Services office. The program is designed to extend students' learning opportunities beyond the traditional classroom setting into professional work environments. 

Viterbo University is pleased to have been awarded a three-year Career Ready Internship grant through the Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation that allows Viterbo University to pay eligible juniors and seniors $10 an hour for their internship experience.  Many for-profit organizations elect to pay their interns, but for some non-profits and other businesses, this is not an option.

Find out more:

Benefits of sponsoring a Viterbo student intern
Sponsoring an intern can be a positive experience for your organization. Some of the benefits an employer may receive from participating in the internship program include:

  • The services of mature, academically qualified students who approach projects with fresh insight and a high level of enthusiasm and motivation
  • An opportunity to observe potential employees
  • The perspective of current academic knowledge in specialized fields
  • The opportunity to undertake special projects or short-term assignments
  • An opportunity for future managers to practice their supervisory skills
  • The opportunity to share in the preparation of future members of a profession

What is the difference between an intern and an employee?

To ensure that an experience is educational, and thus eligible to be considered a legitimate internship by the NACE definition, all the following criteria must be met: 

  1. The experience must be an extension of the classroom: a learning experience that provides for applying the knowledge gained in the classroom. It must not be simply to advance the operations of the employer or be the work that a regular employee would routinely perform.
  2. The skills or knowledge learned must be transferable to other employment settings.
  3. The experience has a defined beginning and end, and a job description with desired qualifications.
  4. There are clearly defined learning objectives/goals related to the professional goals of the student’s academic coursework. 
  5. There is supervision by a professional with expertise and educational and/or professional background in the field of the experience.
  6. There is routine feedback by the experienced supervisor.  
  7. There are resources, equipment, and facilities provided by the host employer that support learning objectives/goals. 

*If these criteria are followed, it is the opinion of NACE (National Association of Colleges and Employers) that the experience can be considered a legitimate internship.  

The Fair Labor Standards Act (see FLSA Fact Sheet #71) also indicates that among other things: The intern does not displace regular employees, but works under the close observation of a regular employee. 

Expectations of intern sites and supervisors

  • Orient the student to the placement site, structure, mission, etc.
  • Provide the student with meaningful projects/assignments that would enhance their development and knowledge in connection with their academic interests and career goals.
  • Counsel the student in reflecting on their experience in terms of their personal and professional development.
  • Meet with the student on a regular basis for the purpose of discussing internship content and intern performance.
  • Expose the students to the behind the scenes work and management of the projects.
  • Invite student to attend meetings, when appropriate, with leaders in the organization and community.
  • Establish guidelines for the evaluation of the student’s learning experience and overall progress.
  • Complete program evaluations required by the program.


College students with financial need are often unable to accept unpaid internships in their fields of study because they need to earn a paycheck. By passing on an internship opportunity, they miss out on valuable, real-world experience in their fields of study. 

Viterbo University is pleased to have been awarded a three-year Career Ready Internship grant through the Great Lakes Higher Education Guaranty Corporation. This grant will allow Viterbo to pay eligible juniors and seniors $10 an hour for their internship experience. Individual student awards will vary depending on unmet financial need, number of internship credits registered for, and the total number of applicants.  Any employer who hosts an unpaid internship experience that falls within the our guidelines is potentially eligible to participate in this paid internship program. Past sponsors of grant-funded internships include many local and regional business and non-profit organizations. 

Call Alyssa Gostonczik, Intern and Employer Relations Coordinator at 608.796.3829, email, or fill out the contact form. Alyssa will follow up within 48 hours to help you build a student internship experience. 

 What happens next?

  1. Once the internship experience is defined, your opportunity will be entered and advertised to all students through Career Connect powered by Purple Briefcase, our online job bank system.  You decide how students should apply and whom you wish to interview.
  2. Once your selection process is complete, both you and the student intern will create and sign a learning agreement where expectations regarding hours, duties, and other details are clearing stated and agreed upon.   
  3. The Intern and Employer Relations Coordinator will be available to assist you with any questions you might have during the course of the internship.
  4. Viterbo handles the entire payroll process for interns funded through the Career Ready Internship grant.  


About Great Lakes:  Dedicated to Making College Education a Reality Since 1967

Knowing that education has the power to change lives for the better, Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates was established as a nonprofit group focused on a single objective: helping students nationwide prepare for and succeed in postsecondary education and student loan repayment. As a leading student loan guarantor and servicer, we have been selected by the U.S. Department of Education to provide assistance and repayment planning to more than 8 million borrowers—as well as assistance to colleges and lenders nationwide. Our group's earnings support one of the largest and most respected education philanthropy programs in the country. Since 2006, we have committed nearly $154 million in grant funding to promote higher education access and completion for students of color, low-income students, and first-generation students. For additional information, visit

Great Lakes PNG

In the News