Why should I do an internship? How will it be valuable to me as a Psychology student?

Internships serve several purposes:

  • You get to “try on” a career/job that you may be considering after graduation. It is always a good idea to try something on before you buy it! Finding out that a particular field is not for you is just as important as finding out that you love it! Job shadowing can also be helpful in this area.
  • You gain real-world experience and you can apply the principles of psychology that you have been learning at CSU.
  • It looks great on a resume or graduate school application! Employers and graduate schools like seeing that you went the extra mile to learn more about a population or area of psychology.
  • Networking! Your internship supervisor may end up serving as a reference for a future job, may refer you to another opportunity, or may even hire you post-graduation!

Student Quotes:

“Having an internship is the best kind of knowledge you can gain. Not only do you gain practical knowledge about the field you are wanting to work in, but it shows you much more than a book can teach. It shows you more about the field and more importantly more about yourself. I used all 12 upper division elective credits on internships and I wouldn’t have done it any other way! It has taught me so much and helped me to gain connections to help me now and further down the road. Be ambitious, call the company you think you would like to work for and ask if there are any available positions as an intern.” – Dominique Montijo- senior

“Interning with the Police Department has been very eye opening. I am put into the field that I hope to go into and have found that it is my passion. I go to my internship everyday excited to help out with whatever needs to be done. I have met so many people who have passed down their advice and experience to me. I would suggest everyone to have an internship in the field they want in order to know firsthand what it is like and get an upper hand when their career finally develops.” -Cayley Chiodo – senior

Getting Started:

As a psychology student you may not be required to do an internship, but we do recommend that you do! All class levels (first year – senior) are able to do an internship, however, we find that the experience is the most impactful for juniors and seniors.

You may do an internship for-credit or not-for-credit. Internships can be either paid or unpaid. You will receive 1, 2, or 3 credits of PSY 488 or PSY 487, depending on how many total hours you are interning. 40 hours = 1 credit, 80 hours = 2 credits, 120 hours = 3 credits.


Choose an internship and apply! Please note that the Psychology Department does not currently place students in internships. It is up to you to find one that works well for you, however; in some cases we can make recommendations and give you contact information. Please review the list on this website of internship ideas from past psychology students. Please note that this is not an exclusive list. You may find an internship that is not on this list that better suits your goals. Here are a few other places you can look:



You will need to know the following 3 pieces of information:

How many hours will you be working at your internship?
What will your duties be?
Contact information for your internship supervisor.
Register for PSY488 or PSY 487. You will receive information on how to do this after meeting with your concentration internship coordinator.
The internship coordinator for your concentration will be in contact with your supervisor at the completion of your internship. You will be given an “S” (satisfactory) or a “U” (unsatisfactory) grade, which will be informed through supervisor feedback.

Clinical/Counseling Concentration

If you are in the Clinical/Counseling Concentration please refer to the Clinical Counseling Process Document for detailed steps regarding your required internship: 1. Look for an Internship 2. Contact Internship Sites 3. Prepare for your Interview 4. Register for Credit. Please contact Dr. Tracy Richards to discuss your internship and to be approved for credit. Dr. Richards can be reached at tracy.richards@colostate.edu.

General, Mind Brain and Behavior or Industrial/Organizational Concentrations

If you are in the General, Mind Brain and Behavior or Industrial/Organizational concentration please contact Dr. Ernest Chavez to discuss your internship and to be approved for credit. Dr. Chavez can be reached at ernest.chavez@colostate.edu.

Addictions Counseling

If you are in the concentration in Addictions Counseling please contact Wendy Lee to discuss your required internship and to be approved for credit. Wendy can be reached at Wendy.Lee@colostate.edu.