A biological internship is a short-term work program that allows students to gain valuable career related experience with an employer. These work-learn experiences are structured so that students are encouraged to relate their classroom activities to their on-the-job experience and explore career areas, learn practical skills and make contacts within their chosen fields. In today's highly competitive professional schools, graduate schools and job markets, graduates need more than just a college degree. Internships provide academically related experience, a major factor used by employers and post-graduate educators when selecting graduates. At The University of Tampa, nearly half of all biology, environmental science and marine science/biology graduates have successfully completed internships.
The Department of Biology offers an internship program that provides practical work experience to majors in biology, environmental science and marine science/biology.
Through internships with private industry, nonprofit organizations and government agencies, students gain on-the-job experience in areas such as biomedical research, fisheries biology, veterinary medicine, environmental biology and mariculture.
One example of an internship in which UT students frequently participate is in the care and rehab program takes place at the now world-famous manatee program at the Lowry Park Zoo. Here, students help in the care and rehabilitation of one of Florida's most endangered species, the West Indian manatee. They also work directly with a variety of animals and participate in programs that educate students in public schools and the general public.
The list below represents a sample of some of the other internships offered by the Department of Biology. Most are local and may be done during fall, spring or summer semesters. Others are not local, but still in Florida and may be completed during the summer. Many opportunities are also available during the summer months in locations throughout the United States.
Marine Biology, Aquaculture
Pre-Professional, Biomedical Research
Environmental, Ecological, Behavioral
To qualify for an internship, a student must be a junior or senior majoring in biology, environmental science or marine science/biology with a 3.0 GPA in the major or permission from the department chair. Two courses of introductory biology are required and other upper level courses may be specified. For example, if the internship involves marine fish ecology, the student may be required to have general ecology and ichthyology as prerequisites.
Yes, students performing internships enroll for 1-8 semester hours of credit in BIO 499 Biological Internship. For each hour of credit, 33.3 employee working hours must be completed; for example, if you enroll in BIO 499 for three credit hours, you must work 100 hours with the sponsoring agency. Internships may be completed in fall, spring or summer semesters, and count as elective credit only.
Besides performing satisfactorily in all work aspects of the internship, you are required to complete four written assignments: agency description, activities log, resume and final evaluation. Other assignments such as a presentation or research project may be made as determined by the agency supervisor, internship coordinator and student. The course grade is either S (satisfactory) or U (unsatisfactory) and is determined by the agency supervisor and internship coordinator. The grade is based on both the written assignments and the supervisor's evaluation of job performance.
Internships may be paid or unpaid, but the vast majority falls into the latter category. Remember that with internships, the emphasis is on learning. The practical work experience you gain can translate into a real job or entrance into professional or graduate school and increased income later.
Lori McRae is the coordinator of marine biology and environmental/ecological/behavioral biology internships. For more information, she can be reached at (813) 257-3941 or email@example.com.
Ann Williams is the coordinator of pre-professional and molecular/general biology internships. For more information, she can be reached at (813) 257-3994 or firstname.lastname@example.org.