The Bellarmine Internship Guarantee

In the fall 2015, Bellarmine announced the Bellarmine Internship Guarantee, inspiring three major initiatives aimed at increasing student preparedness in the workplace, decreasing financial barriers to pursue internship experiences, and incorporating a paid internship program in the nonprofit sector. Through strategic campus and employer partnerships, we will work to increase the number of students completing an internship for credit from 70% (2018) to 90% for the class of 2021.

We GUARANTEE every student the opportunity to have an internship, develop a career plan and build a professional network.

Three B.I.G Initiatives

Career Courses

BU199: “Major and Career Pathways” is a 1-credit, 7-week course designed to guide students through a process of self-discovery and discernment to explore majors and career opportunities that align with their
 values, interests, personality, and skills.

BU299: “Internship Preparation and Success” is a 1-credit, 7-week course designed to empower students in their internship and job search and prepare them for professional expectations of the workplace. BU299 is also a pre-requisite to receive the Summer Internship Scholarship.

The Summer Internship Scholarship 

The Summer Internship Scholarship provides free tuition for a three-credit summer internship course for students who have completed BU299 or a designated equivalent course (i.e. PSYC299, CJS.299, and ENGL299). Students are responsible for a $400 internship supervision fee. Students will be assigned a career advisor who can assist them in the process as needed.


Live.Work.Lead.Serve - In 2017, Career Center received two grants from local foundations (James Graham Brown Foundation and Ogle Foundation) to fund students who are pursuing summer internship experiences in the nonprofit sector. The program, Live.Work.Lead.Serve, launched in summer 2018 and supports Bellarmine’s mission to deeply engage students in community while exploring and pursuing pathways to meaningful work.

COVID-19 Internship Policies

In-person internships with organizations that meet "Healthy at Work" guidelines, according to state health officials, may count for academic credit. Students must register for internships each semester by the last day to add and drop classes. Refer to the university academic calendar for more details.

To be approved for an in-person internship, the student must complete the Internship Application Proposal & Registration on Handshake. Within the application, the student will be asked to provide documentation of the employer's Healthy at Work proposal, approved by the state of Kentucky, and sign a waiver acknowledging potential risks and exposure to COVID-19.

Bellarmine will continue to monitor and follow CDC and state guidelines with the health and safety of our students as the top priority.

The Career Center has also expanded access to the number of paid, remote internship opportunities available to students through COVID-19 Relief Funding. Visit Handshake and search "Remote" or email for more information. To register your internship for credit, view this step by step guide: Registering an Internship for Credit.

Internships at Bellarmine

Criteria for an experience to be defined as an internship: To ensure that an experience—whether it is a traditional internship or one conducted remotely or virtually—is educational, and thus eligible to be considered a legitimate internship by the NACE definition, all the following criteria must be met:

  • 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.
  • The skills or knowledge learned must be transferable to other employment settings.
  • The experience has a defined beginning and end, and a job description with desired qualifications.
  • There are clearly defined learning objectives/goals related to the professional goals of the student’s academic coursework.
  • There is supervision by a professional with expertise and educational and/or professional background in the field of the experience.
  • There is routine feedback by the experienced supervisor.
  • There are resources, equipment, and facilities provided by the host employer that support learning objectives/goals.

For further discussion and information concerning the legal requirements and standards of internships, we recommend you review the NACE Position Statement: U.S. Internships A Definition and Criteria to Assess Opportunities And Determine the Implications for Compensation.