In addition to traditional course offerings in biology, several unique opportunities exist for learning experiences beyond the classroom. Internships can be established with a variety of areas:
- private medical practices
- Department of Agriculture in Harrisburg
- Veterinary Diagnostics Laboratory in Harrisburg
- Penn State Fruit Research Laboratory in Biglerville
- A number of universities (Cornell, Carnegie-Mellon, Jefferson, University of Pittsburgh, for example).
- Students may also develop their own program in consultations with the internship coordinator in the department, or with the Center for Career Development
Students should first register with the Center for Career Development. Application forms are available online and are due by June 15, 2013 for summer internships; September 6, 2013 (add/drop date) for fall internships; and January 31, 2014 (add/drop date) for spring internships. A catalog of possible internships as well as other directories and binders are available from the Center for Career Development and should be perused prior to the date of application. Applications are reviewed by the department and recommendations are made to the cooperating individual or institution. In most cases, students are expected to spend a minimum of 160 hours per semester actively involved in the internship and may be "on call" for a longer period. Study and reading are frequently an after hours expectation. Most students have found the internships enjoyable and rewarding experiences.
Near the conclusion of the internship, each student submits to the department, via the Internship Coordinator, a scientific report on a special project that was an outgrowth of some particular phase of the program. Grades are compiled from a combination of the supervisor's evaluation, the paper, observations, and interviews. Because of the observational or apprentice-like nature of an internship and the limited faculty involvement, internships are graded Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory (S/U). Only under unusual circumstances will the A-F grade option be permitted. Internships do NOT count in the minimum number of courses for the major. Interested students should contact Dr. Fong (firstname.lastname@example.org).