Econ 390: Internship for Economics

This course provides Economics majors and minors practical experience applying the knowledge and skills acquired in formal course work. As you would expect, for work experience to count towards Econ 390 credit, it must involve some application of economics.

The focus of Economics 390 is short-term practical experience--the commitment is initially for 1 semester only. You may repeat the internship, which depends upon both faculty and employer approval. While you can take this course more than once, only up to a maximum of 3 credits can be counted towards the Economics major/minor credits. Anything above 3 credits will be counted towards your overall graduation credits but not towards the Economics major/minor. If you are more interested in a long-term commitment with more supervision, consider enrolling in Econ 391, the Econ Co-op course.


Finding a Position: While you are welcome to look for an appropriate position on your own, we encourage you to visit the Center for Career Development and Student Employment website to search for internship openings. Econ Internship jobs must involve the application of economics to be approved by the Undergraduate Adviser. For details, please see the section on How to Sign Up. If you are an international student you should talk to to get an approval to work off campus.

Enrolling in Econ 390: Students may enroll in Econ 390 for 1-3 credit hours. The number of credits must be chosen in consultation with the Undergraduate Adviser. Students need a position, a faculty advisor, and approval from both their faculty advisor and the undergraduate chair before the beginning of class. Students will also be asked to sign a mandatory waiver form before registering for this course. Students can enroll in 390 up to the regular add/drop deadline each semester.

Coursework: Two short papers are required: one at the beginning of the semester and another at the end of the semester. The first paper serves as your internship proposal and outlines your goals and objectives for the internship. This proposal is due during the second week of the semester, should be 1-3 pages long, and should describe:

  • the position that you are taking,
  • the contact information of your supervisor at work,
  • the days and hours of work,
  • the pay-scale of your position,
  • your goals and objectives during your internship,
  • and what you hope to learn from the internship.

Your second paper is due the last week of classes, should be 3-5 pages long, and should describe:

  • your accomplishments during the internship.
  • your progress towards meeting your goals and objectives?
  • any lessons you learned during your internship (both positive and negative);
  • the relationship between your internship job and the Economics knowledge and skills that you acquired at UH;

In addition, you are expected to keep in contact with your faculty advisor regularly throughout the semester and keep your advisor apprised of your progress. The requirements above are minimum requirements, and the faculty advisor retains the right to request more in terms of quantity and quality as a condition for signing on as a studentís advisor.

How to Sign Up:

  1. Discuss the internship with the Undergraduate Adviser and obtain the internship permission from him. The undergraduate adviser will also help you find the appropriate advisor.
  2. Discuss the internship with your advisor. Obtain permission from your advisor for the internship. He or she may also refuse to be your advisor if he or she decides that the internship is not relevant to the study of economics.
  3. Sign a waiver form (both the student and the employer) and return to the department chair.
  4. Contact Undergraduate Chair to receive an override code to register for the course.

Professional Appearance/ Courtesy: Econ internships involve interaction with professionals outside the casual campus atmosphere at UH. Student interns represent both the Economics Department and the University and must conduct themselves professionally. Be prepared to honor all of your commitments during the semester.

We encourage all students to take advantage of the many services available at the Center for Career Development and Student Employment office (2600 Campus Road #113 phone 956-7253). In particular, they can help you prepare a resume, cover letter, and develop interview skills.