Frequently Asked Questions

Since opening its doors in 1965, CNM and its community partners have offered courses that give students work experience in a real-world setting. Today, work experience education remains a vital part of a CNM education. Nearly 80 percent of CNM's Career Technical Education programs offer an opportunity to gain a work experience, and that percentage continues to grow.
What is Considered a Work Experience?

Work experience varies greatly but is described as a paid or non-paid experience that requires the use of specific knowledge and/or skills in order to solve problems, communicate, think critically and achieve goals in situations that entail accountability to, or responsibility for, an organization, individual, or group. Examples include: military service, volunteer service, an internship, or any type of paid job.

What are Work Experience Education Courses?

Work Experience Education courses at CNM are designed to give students a hands-on experience, primarily related to their chosen program, in a real-world environment. They vary by program or discipline and include: Internships, Co-op Education, Practicums, Clinicals, Apprenticeships, Work Embedded Learning and more.  See the definitions list of Work-Experience Education options at CNM.

Why Take Work Experience Courses?

A work-experience course allows you to gain valuable professional skills and build key relationships that may lead to employment in your chosen field. Often, an employer will hire a student intern upon graduation if the intern proved him- or herself during the internship. The experience helps hone professionalism and other work skills in a real-world setting. Since the work experience occurs in a for-credit course, it is certified on your transcript. 

How Do I Find Work Experience Courses?

Work experience courses aren't hard to find with nearly 70% of CNM degree and certificates offering them. Many are listed as "program approved electives" or specific requirements within certificate or degree programs. You may start by identifying your career cluster to find a work experience course in your field of study.  For detailed information, contact your school advisor or faculty member.

 What are the qualifications for an Internship or Work Experience Course?

For-credit internships require a fundamental knowledge in a CNM field of study, usually one or two semesters of successfully completed coursework. Most programs require a cumulative GPA of at least a 2.5 and the student must be in good-standing and has the professionalism to represent CNM in the workplace. Check with your school or faculty advisors.

 How Long Do Work Experience Courses Last?

Their length depends on the type of work experience course and whether the discipline requires a specific number of hours be spent in the field. Generally, work-experience education courses are completed within a 15-week term and range between 20 to 135 hours or more. Apprenticeships can last a year or more. 

Are Work Experience courses required?

Work Experience may vary by program. Many programs at CNM require a relevant work experience course to fulfill the requirements of a degree or certificate (for example, Healthcare fields and Teacher Education programs). If it is required, the Work Experience course will be listed within the final terms of your program. Other programs at CNM offer a Work Experience course as an elective option. 

Do I Get Paid for a Work Experience Course?

It is possible to receive payment as an intern, but it largely depends on the employer that is hosting the work experience. Most experiences such as clinicals, practicums, field experiences, internships and integrated service learning are not usually paid; however, Co-op Ed and Apprenticeships are paid experiences. Check with your individual school or faculty member to see whether the WEE course offered within your degree or certificate program is a paid or non-paid experience.

How Do I Enroll in a Work Experience Education Course?

Enroll in WEE courses during the registration process just like you would any other CNM course. However, since most work experience courses require faculty permission, pre-requisites or other special arrangements, you should consult with your faculty or school adviser before registering.

How do I find an employer that will offer a temporary Work Experience?

You can start by checking the Job Connection Services "Hire a Suncat" and search for internships or visit with your faculty advisor in your school. You may choose to find your own opportunity but you must have the employer approved by your school first. If you are currently working and would like to do an internship at your current job, first consult with your faculty or school adviser to ensure that your experience is a "new" experience and allows you to fulfill the required learning objectives.

Will an internship that I've completed at CNM transfer to another school?

If you plan to transfer from CNM to another institution, always check with your CNM and transfer school advisor to determine if your internship will receive equivalent transfer credit at your transfer institution.

 Can I earn credit for an internship not taken at CNM or a work experience abroad ?

Contact your Academic School advisor to determine if an internship you participated in at another institution will receive equivalent credit at CNM.

Forty percent of U.S. Associate degree graduates who had a good job waiting at graduation had a relevant internship.                                 

Source: Gallup-Strada