Internships prove beneficial for students


Melvin Kim, 24, Environmental Studies major, uncovers and inspects a farm used to reproduce worms as part of the Biology Program’s composting internship. For the Compost Project, worms are used as part of the process of breaking down organic materials into compost. Photo credit: John Louie Menorca

By John Louie Menorca

Jazmin Horvet, a 23-year-old Biology major, starts on her next experiment, in a lab surrounded by microscopes, incubators, and all manners of biological science equipment.

She is conducting tests on compost samples as part of the Biology department from the Compost Project at Moorpark College.

“I’ve been able to learn so much and develop myself, who I am, and my personal skills, at an affordable cost, and to my local community,” said Horvet. “Moorpark has treated me so well and it feels really, really rewarding to do work that is giving back to that environment.”

Horvet is one of 120 students interning at internship programs on campus through the help of the Career Transfer Center.

Dr. Shannon Johnson, Job Experience Specialist and Work Experience Coordinator with the Career Transfer Center, heads the internship program at Moorpark College.

“There’s no magical fishbowl that students can reach into and get an internship,” said Johnson. “But what we are doing is we are creating programs and workshops that facilitate students becoming competitive for those internships.”

Johnson explains the internship process as follows: There are two types of internships, paid and unpaid. Paid internships are more competitive than unpaid internships, however, unpaid internships provide more units than paid internships.

Unpaid internships are worth one unit for every 60 hours, while paid internships are one unit for every 75 hours. Students can earn up to four units per semester and may also earn a maximum of 16 units for internships altogether.

Regardless of wanting to earning credit or not, the CTC provides services to students who are looking into internships, said Johnson.

All-for-credit internships are transferrable to California state universities, but may or may not transfer to University of California institutions and private universities or colleges, she said.

Internships still may be applied to your UC and private institution applications under outside classroom activities, she said.

In addition to earning job skills and experience, internships provide students an opportunity to explore careers in a field and work environment, possibly for their major, before making a full commitment to that path.

Gabe Dicenzo, 19, Business major, interns under Executive Director David Mirisch and the MC Foundation, handles communications between the foundation and a third party, and describes his first experience in the internship.

“Even in the first meeting, I’ve learned a lot from business perspective, a lot of about what I want to do, and where I should go, and who I should be talking to,” said Dicenzo.

Johnson and the Career Transfer Center have online resources in place to help students in the application process for internships, in addition to these programs and workshops.

An important resource to note, NACElink, lists full-time, part-time, and most importantly, internships provided by companies within local, state, and national boundaries. This and more information can be found via the Career Center link under Services for Students on the Moorpark College website.

For more information on how to find and apply to internships, contact Dr. Sharon Johnson at [email protected] or visit the Career Transfer Center in Fountain Hall.