Guidelines & Regulations
Many organizations offering summer internships compensate interns by giving them valuable supervision, training and work experience in place of salaries. All Praxis funded internships are unpaid; any compensation from a host organization will be deducted from the Praxis grant.
**Organizations requesting a Smith sign-off on liability waivers, assumption of risk forms, or a memo of understanding must contact Beth Carmichael, Five College Risk Manager directly by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 413-538-2730.
Internships That Qualify for Praxis Funding
To qualify for Praxis funding you must work a minimum of 220 hours at your internship. Internships must be at organizations not affiliated with Smith College. You may work a part- or full-time schedule, as long as you complete 220 hours during your summer break. You may not divide the required 220 hours between the summer and the following academic year unless you are on the Smith JYA program in Geneva.
An internship qualifies for Praxis funding if it:
- is connected to your overall educational goals (may or may not be connected with your major)
- offers substantial learning opportunities
- allows for significant career exploration
- is well supervised by someone with enough relevant expertise to ensure that the internship will be an educational experience
- takes place entirely at the organization's work site, except when interns conduct work in the field, or attend meetings or conferences
- includes meeting with your supervisor in-person and on-site a minimum of once a week
- consists of a minimum of 220 hours and a minimum of 5.5 weeks (40 hours a week maximum); there are absolutely no exceptions
- takes place during the Smith College summer break (with the exception of students on study abroad programs in the Southern Hemisphere and with Smith JYA in Hamburg, Germany and in Geneva, Switzerland). Students participating in Smith JYA programs need to consult with the faculty director regarding internships and the legal use of Praxis funding in each JYA country.
- takes place within an organization, division or department, where summer interns are not paid.
If You Don't Complete Your Required 220 Hours
If, for extraordinary circumstances, you are forced to leave your internship before you have completed 220 work hours, you must call the Praxis Data Assistant at the Lazarus Center before you leave or, if that is not possible, immediately after.
Students who receive Praxis stipends are expected to fulfill their commitment of 220 work hours before the beginning of the fall semester. If unforeseeable and unavoidable circumstances dictate that you must leave, you will be obligated to reimburse Smith College a pro-rated portion of your Praxis stipend, or the entire award that was given to you. The amount you owe will be placed on your next tuition bill.
INTERNSHIPS THAT DO NOT QUALIFY
An internship does not qualify for Praxis funding if it does not meet the criteria listed above or if:
- it is an independent project. Your duties must support the work of an organization
- your supervisor is a volunteer rather than a permanent, paid staff member
- it is a study program that emphasizes theoretical rather than practical learning
- it is an academic and/or training course
- it is located in a foreign country carrying a travel warning from the U.S. State Department, unless the country carrying the advisory is your home
- the host organization is owned or run by a member of your immediate family, or by an aunt or uncle
- the internship supervisor is a family member.
- it takes place at two separate internships
Note: The Lazarus Center has the right to reject any internship it deems inappropriate.