Internships and Career Services
Experiential learning is an integral component of our educational strategy at the Martin School. It serves as a practical complement to formal academic study. For those students who do not have significant work experience, you are expected to gain practical work experience in an area related to your concentration. Most students undertake an internship during the summer between their first and second year of graduate study.
In the first semester, MPA students take PA 691 (Ethics and Public Policy) which prepares them to market themselves for internships and full-time positions in the appropriate fields. Students participate in networking events and professional development activities throughout the program, including trips to Washington DC and Frankfort, Martin School seminars, workshops with alumni and practitioners, and more. Extensive community connections and advising from the DGS and other faculty are also helpful for finding internships that match interest, expertise, and professional goals. Due to the Martin School's high reputation and local alumni, the Martin School has attained several internships designated solely to Martin School students, as well as internships that students are routinely awarded. These include:
- Save the Children
- Bluegrass Area Development District
- Kentucky Legislative Research Commission
- The Council of State Governments
- Fayette County Mayor's Office
- Community Action Council
- Kentucky League of Cities
- United Way of the Bluegrass
- Government Accountability Office (GAO)
For an internship to qualify, it must follow a set of criteria, described below; if you have questions, contact the DGS.
- Submit a learning contract signed by themselves, their internship organization supervisor, and academic supervisor at the start of their internship to the DGS. The student will complete the assignments and fulfill expectations as outlined in this contract.
- The student should complete the contract which will be then distributed to their supervisor and Dr. Curl, director of student internships. The contract is found here
- Internship organization supervisor should write a performance evaluation letter for the student. Please let Suzy know when you have completed your internship so she can send your supervisor the evaluation.
The Martin School offers professional development workshops throughout the two-year program to prepare students to enter the job market. This includes opportunities to not only hone job application/interview skills, but also to network with alumni and other public servants. In addition, faculty and staff frequently share job listings via email. it is important for you to monitor your student email regularly to take advantage of this information.