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The following checklist is applicable to for-credit internship experiences at BYU–Hawaii. Career Services encourages students to plan their internships three to six months ahead of time to avoid last-minute registration and approval delays. Please be aware that some internship experiences (depending on the internship provider) require students to begin the process a year in advance. Please pay close attention to application deadlines for semester registration and deadlines set by the internship provider.

Here are some key examples and reasons why we encourage students to apply for these and get this completed well in advance.

1. Document Processing Time: Obtaining necessary documents such as MOU's, permits, visas, and other legal requirements can be time-consuming. Delays may occur due to processing times. International students might face additional time delays due to visa requirements and approvals.

2. Application Deadlines: Many companies and organizations have specific internship application deadlines. Planning in advance ensures students can meet these deadlines, increasing their chances of securing a position.

3. Approval Processes: Internship opportunities need to be approved in Handshake before a student can be registered for the experience. Approvals and reviews of these experiences include academic advisors, internship coordinators, and international student services to name a few. These approval processes can take time, especially if key decision-makers are out of the office or have a busy schedule.

4. Competitive Advantage: Early planning provides students with a competitive advantage. It allows them to research and apply to a broader range of opportunities, increasing the likelihood of securing a position aligned with their career goals.

5. Networking Opportunities: Building connections with professionals in the chosen industry takes time. Planning allows students to attend networking events, informational interviews, and industry-related gatherings, enhancing their chances of securing quality internship offers.

6. Skill Development and Training: Some internships may require specific skill sets or training. Planning in advance enables students to identify and acquire the necessary skills or certifications before the internship begins.

7. Preparation for Interviews: Internship interviews can be competitive, and students benefit from early preparation. Planning allows time for mock interviews, resume reviews, and other career development services provided by the university.

8. Accommodating Academic Schedules: Coordinating internships with academic schedules is essential. Planning early allows students to align their internship with semester breaks, ensuring minimal disruption to their coursework.

9. Securing Housing and Transportation: For internships in different locations, securing housing and transportation arrangements is crucial. Early planning allows students to explore options, compare costs, and make informed decisions.

10. Company Background Research: Researching potential internship hosts takes time. Planning in advance allows students to thoroughly investigate companies, understand their values, and align themselves with organizations that match their career aspirations.

Internship Application Checklist

Step 1: Academic Advising

Meet with your academic advisor. Your academic advisor will check your eligibility for the experience and if you meet the qualifications they will add your for-credit internship to your map. Registrars will not be able to register you for the course if this has not been done. 

Step 2: Internship Coordinator

Meet with your internship coordinator. See the list of internship coordinators. Discuss with your internship coordinator how this experience will help you with your career goals, and professional development, and establish your three learning objectives. These learning objectives will need to be applied to your Handshake application later in the application process. Social work and education majors have learning objectives included in their program contracts. Please speak with your internship coordinator about these objectives. 

Step 3: Get Hired

Get hired by a company. The Career Studio is happy to assist, guide, and provide support in your search to find an experience that is right for you. Make a plan for your success. It is ultimately up to you to find where, when, and who you complete your internship experience with.

If you need help with finding an experience please help us, help you by thinking about where, when, why, and who you want to do this experience with. Think about what industry and job duties you want to perform during this experience. Be as specific as possible with your search. Only you know what is best for you, your skillset, and what will meet your expectations. Be specific and calculated, and target your efforts and energy where you want to be. We suggest finding an experience close to where you want to live, in the industry you want to work in, and if possible, the specific organization you wish to work with upon completion of your schooling. This will help you to build the right network and relationships and will contribute to your future success!!  

Step 4: Offer Letter

Once you've been hired, you will need an offer letter that states: your name, your start and end date, approximate hours you will work (weekly or in total), amount of pay (or unpaid), and the job description. Later you will be asked to upload this letter to your Handshake application. You can also ask one of our career mentors for assistance to add this to your application.

In your offer letter, it should state what responsibilities and duties you will have while on this experience. The letter should tie the experience into your major and show how your academic learning will apply to the experience. 

Step 5: Memorandum of Understanding (MOU)

Each Handshake application (internship experience) requires a signed memorandum of understanding (MOU) with BYU–Hawaii and the internship provider. An MOU may be completed differently depending on your program (i.e., social work and education), please inquire with your internship coordinator or program lead for your major. Before your Handshake application approval process can begin this signed MOU needs to be uploaded to your application. These documents are an agreement between the internship provider and BYU–Hawaii and state the responsibilities each organization has to you as a student during this experience.

Download the MOU from your Handshake application and ask your internship provider to read and sign. We prefer to use this MOU for each experience. If there are questions or requests to revise verbiage on the MOU, please email We will review the request and seek approval from our legal counsel to make the requested changes. If the changes are accepted, we will provide you with the amended MOU to send to your internship provider. Once your internship provider signs the MOU, please upload the completed MOU to your Handshake application.

Step 6: Register/Apply on Handshake for internship experience

Log into and register your experience. Select "Career Center," > "Experience," > "Request a New Experience," and complete the form. Upload your offer letter, MOU, input your learning objectives, and your signed assumption of risk waiver to your experience.

When creating your learning objectives please keep these questions in mind. First, "How does this internship directly relate to my major?" Second, "Why is this experience a critical and integral part of my educational program?" Lastly, "How will I apply relevant knowledge and skills from my classroom learning to this experience?"

To ensure your desired experience is approved it is important that you tie the internship experience to your major and show how it is going to help you improve your skills, education, and professional development. Each internship experience needs to be relevant to your major.

Step 7: Academic Internship Approval

Once these other steps are completed kindly contact the Career Studio so we can begin the approval process on your Handshake application. You can email us here at The approvals are done sequentially and will begin once all of these needed documents and steps are completed. Approvals and verification of your Handshake application may need to be reviewed by the following: Financial Services, IWORK (if IWORK student), program lead and or internship coordinator, Office of the Registrar, and International Student Services (if international student).

Yamagata Funding Assistance

Once a student has an approved Handshake application for their internship Career Services can review their funding request. If the student is unsure the experience will qualify they are encouraged to meet with a Career Services manager to see if the experience will meet the guidelines for Yamagata funding assistance.

Students planning on doing an internship outside of the U.S. and Canada, and within Oceania and the Asian rim, may qualify for Yamagata funding assistance. Please email for more information or stop by the Career Studio to inquire. Students who receive this fund should demonstrate a strong commitment to working in and or moving to Oceania or the Asia region after graduation.

The Yamagata fund may help provide some funding while on these experiences. The support provided is not meant to cover the entire cost of a student's experience but may help offset the costs associated with the experience. If approved the Yamagata fund may cover roundtrip airfare from Hawaii to the internship location and funding assistance for travel, food, and accommodations.

Student medical insurance for internships

For our students, both domestic and international, who are planning on doing an internship for-credit you need to confirm that you are enrolled for Student Medical Benefit (SMB). For students interning outside of the United States, Career Services can assist you with applying for student medical insurance via our third-party provider GeoBlue. Medical insurance is required for our students that are doing for-credit experiences both domestic and international. Please email Career Services at for questions about international medical insurance and our Student Medical Benefit office, Beth Martin at

GEOBLUE Insurance for International internships ONLY

To register for this insurance, please notify the Career Services office of your intent to do an international internship. Career Services will input your internship dates, name, and other required information in the GeoBlue insurance system. Once you have received a confirmation notification from our office stating that we have inputted your name, you can then go to either the GeoBlue Website or go to your Apple App Store or Google App Store and download the GeoBlue App to register. Please follow the easy steps to register. For your information, you will need to find a doctor close to the area where you will be living while doing your internship. Once registered, please visit the GeoBlue Member Hub or use the app to find providers in your area. You will not be able to register if you have not contacted our office first so if you are having issues, please contact us as soon as possible at