Summer Internships

Whether you choose to earn academic credit or not, summer is an excellent time for completing an internship. 

Please review this Career Planning Checklist for Achieving Success in the Virtual World to make the most of Summer 2020!

All-Access Summer

The right summer internship will give you the experience to get an edge on your career.  Why summer?

  • More time available to spend at your internship site
  • Explore a new geographic area - you could live on-campus, in downtown Chicago, at home, or someplace completely different
  • Access to special summer academic internship programs, such as the ACTIVATE program

Employers increasingly look to their interns when they are considering full-time candidates, so performing well in a summer internship can be an important part of preparing yourself for life after graduation. 

Work and Learn Together

Students will work with their Internship Specialist/Faculty Internship Supervisor and the Career Advancement Center to set internship goals and target employers able to offer meaningful learning experiences.

Interns participating in the Academic Internship Course will work with an Internship Specialist or Faculty Internship Supervisor throughout the summer to put learning front and center, with well-designed assignments that will lead you further along your path toward whatever your final goal may be. Some students will even participate in regular in-person or virtual seminars with their supervisor throughout the summer. Find your Internship Specialist or Faculty Internship Supervisor in the right sidebar and log in to Handshake to schedule an appointment. Need help scheduling an appointment? View our Handshake Help Page here!

Am I Eligible? 

Summer Academic Internship credit is available to Lake Forest College students with junior standing or above by the start of their internship. Other Lake Forest College students may request to be admitted to the summer Academic Internship program and will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

There is a cost for the summer internship credit. Students are required to contact the Business Office to discuss these costs prior to pursuing an Academic Internship (Student Accounts, call 847-735-5032 or email

Read more about Academic Internship Program Guidelines and next steps.

Flexible Credit

Eligible Lake Forest College students may earn credit for completing between 150 and 300 hours for college credit along with the requirements provided by their Faculty Internship Supervisor.

2 credits

1.75 credits

1.5 credits

1.25 credits

1 credit

300 hours

262.5 hours

225 hours

187.5 hours

150 hours

How to get started

The Career Advancement Center will help you to explore your options, polish your cover letter/resume, prepare for interviews, and collaborate with you to troubleshoot your internship search, if you have trouble finding just the right one. But it is ultimately the student’s responsibility to secure their own internship opportunity.

Some internship sites may require you to earn credit, particularly in the sciences or psychology, so start making financial plans early. 

Your Internship Specialist or Faculty Internship Supervisor can help you set start/end dates to ensure requirements and hours are completed appropriately. You may be expected to align the start or completion of your hours and academic work with that of other students to facilitate online or in-person group activities that can enhance your internship experience.

All requirements should be completed by the last day of classes for the July Term; some exceptions can be made for internships that extend into August, with approval from your Internship Specialist or Faculty Internship Supervisor and the the Director of Internships.

Summer Internship Application Process:

  • Unlike Fall and Spring internships, Summer internship applications are accepted on a rolling basis. However, the preferred registration deadline for a Summer Academic Internship is the first day of the May Term.
  • If an internship has not been secured by that date, applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, but no later than 2 weeks prior to the start of the July Term. As soon as you secure your internship you must submit the Academic Internship Course application. You will receive access to the application from your Internship Specialist or Faculty Internship Supervisor. 
  • In order to be approved for summer internship credit, you will need to submit all requested materials prior to the start of the internship. You should not start your internship before securing approval. See the Academic Internship Course page for additional details.

Retroactive Credit is Not Permitted

Both aspects of the Academic Internship Course, the experiential component and the academic course requirements, must be completed concurrently.

Do You Need Financial Support?

There are two possible ways to obtain funding to off-set the cost of completing a Summer Academic Internship:

1. Summer Grant:
Contact Adriana Rodriguez in the Office of Financial Aid to determine your eligibility for a summer grant to reduce the cost of summer tuition. Email her with your full name and the number of internship and non-internship credits you hope to earn for the summer.  She can provide you with your cost per credit now – even without your internship secured. 

2. Lake Forest College Internship Funding Program:
Students completing unpaid Academic Internships for credit may be eligible for up to $2,500 to help alleviate costs associated with their experience. However, typical awards range from $300-$1000 and are usually granted for transportation and other costs above and beyond the cost of a typical semester at the College. As such, housing costs will only be considered during summer terms. Funding is not available to cover the cost of the credit.

Funding is available to students one time only during their time at the College. Students from ALL majors completing internships in any field may apply for the program. The funding program has a competitive application process and you will not receive final approval for funding until your internship is approved by the Career Advancement Center. 

Please note that funding is limited and is not guaranteed. Therefore it is strongly recommended that students budget for internship-related expenses and pursue additional funding sources. 

*ACTIVATE Program: Students should reference the ACTIVATE Summer Internship Program materials for funding information.

Are You Ready? 

Review your next steps and the Academic Internship Program Guidelines outlined on our Academic Internship Course page.

There is a Financial Cost to Complete a Summer Academic Internship

Students are required to contact the Business Office to discuss these costs prior to pursuing an Academic Internship

Learn about ACTIVATE, the summer residential program in Chicago!