UMD GSG calls for standardized policies for compulsory internships
The University of Maryland GSG passed a resolution at its Friday meeting, asking the graduate school to provide more support for students doing required internships.
Many graduate programs at this university require full-time internships for graduation, but they can cause a host of financial problems for students, according to the resolution.
The specific internship requirements depend on the program, which means that some students pay more credits to complete their internship. The resolution calls on entities such as the graduate school and the graduate council to standardize policies affecting internships and day schools so that students are not financially burdened as a result of their program’s internship requirements.
The resolution calls for a standardized tuition rate for students doing compulsory internships, regardless of their location and status.
The three-credit internships can cost up to $ 5,118 for out-of-state students, said Janisa Hui, a doctoral student in school psychology. The Department of Hearing and Speech Sciences requires internships worth six credits, which is an out-of-state tuition fee of over $ 10,000 with no possibility of discount, said Tamara Allard , president of the government of graduate students.
Many of these internships are required by professional associations outside of college, but some students have to pay thousands of dollars to complete them due to credit requirements.
âYou pay for your education so you can work,â Allard said.
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Full-time internships may also prevent graduate students from seeking an assistant position at the same time, according to the resolution. These assistantships may offer a tuition fee discount to students, which some students rely on to pay tuition and compulsory fees.
Students’ salaries during their internships can be as low as $ 15,000, which is lower than the current minimum allowance of $ 18,000 for 9.5-month assistantships at this university, according to the resolution.
âGraduate students in general, we don’t really care about tuition fees because the [graduate assistantship] essentially [covers] all tuition discounts, âHui said. “An internship or an externship may be part of the requirements for obtaining your degree, so [students] really have to take the money out of their pocket in order to fulfill this requirement. “
Allard said a voter emailed him about it, saying their required internship was causing a huge financial burden. This student was paying $ 5,000 for tuition, Allard said, so she had to apply for a needs-based grant.
Some students must also complete their thesis while doing their internship. This can lead to even more stress and financial burden as theses also have a credit requirement.
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“You end up paying, not just for that one [internship] credit, which would again be $ 1,760 per semester for one credit, and you end up paying for additional thesis credits, âAllard said.
This financial burden also distracts the attention of college students, Hui said. Internships are part of university education, and graduate students shouldn’t have to lose their work-life balance or their sanity to survive, Hui said.
“Mmaking this resolution possible not only relieves financial stress for graduate students, but it also indirectly helps improve academic performance and learning, âHui wrote in an email.
But students often cannot choose where to do their internships. In clinical psychology, there is usually a random assignment process for students. This could force them out of the state, Allard said.
Hui hopes that approval of the resolution will help ease the combined cost of internships and tuition fees that students face.
âI just don’t think it’s fair and just to put the financial burden on the student just to make it happen because he wanted to graduate,â Hui said.