Experiential Education

At Holy Cross there are multiple opportunities to for students to explore industries and careers, whether it is through a summer or academic internship, conducting research, participating in community based learning or through involvement in co-curricular activities.  The opportunities for hands-on learning are endless.

Internships can be an integral part of the career discernment process for college students. This is particularly true for students at a liberal arts institution where their coursework does not necessarily prepare them for a specific career field.  Internships allow students the opportunity to “test drive” an industry and decide if they want to pursue it after graduation.  In addition, internships allow students to apply what they have learned in the classroom in a professional setting.

The best internships allow students to immerse themselves in the organization and see what the daily tasks for an entry level position entail as well as talk to professionals currently working in the field.  Further, the best internships allow students to see the possible career trajectory within an organization and/or industry. 

Frequently at the end of an internship the student decides s/he definitively wants to pursue that field.  Other times the exact opposite happens and the student interns in an industry or job that does not at all fit with their interests, strengths and passions.  While this experience isn’t nearly as enjoyable for the student, it is equally valuable.  Either way, the internship offered them the opportunity to explore and allowed for some professional context and experience.

Internships can be secured through the Center for Career Development, the Academic Internship Program, the Washington Semester, networking and through our online resources. 

Faculty members are conducting research throughout the academic year and during the summer months.  Since Holy Cross is an exclusively undergraduate institution, Holy Cross students gain the opportunity to conduct the same caliber of research as most graduate students at other schools.

Students interested in participating should contact their professors and the Science Research Program Administrator to learn about the upcoming research opportunities.

Community-Based Learning (CBL) is a teaching approach that allows students the opportunity to apply the work that they’re conducting in the classroom to civic engagement work an outside organization. CBL is offered in a growing number of courses across all disciplines and is a valuable way for students to gain work experience and insight into the non-profit sector.

Students interested in participating in a CBL course should contact the Donelan Office of Community-Based Learning.

It’s important for students to get involved on campus to further develop their leadership, teamwork and project management skills.  Employers and graduate schools look to co-curricular activities as another way to screen candidates for the skills that are needed to be successful at their organization.  Regardless of your child’s interests, it’s likely that Holy Cross offers a student club or organization to meet those interests.

More information about the clubs and organizations on campus can be found by visiting the Office of Student Involvement website.