12-Course Internship Requirements

The goal of the 12-course program's internship requirement is for students to graduate with real-world experience in the technologies they are learning and to build skills that are hard to develop in the classroom.

This requirement is usually fulfilled by doing a technology-oriented summer internship off-campus. This internship qualifies for degree based CPT. We will also accept certain alternatives, including research with a faculty member, part-time work on-campus, or supervised project work. These options need to be approved ahead of time. 

For internship credit towards the 12-Course Program requirements, please submit a completed  Internship Offer Form, OR a signed offer letter from your prospective employer, on letterhead stationary, giving your job title, and duties, the beginning and ending dates of employment, and an estimation of hours worked. It also must state the location of the employer. 

Any work that is going to be counted towards the internship requirement should meet the following requirements:

  • The amount of work should be, at least, 220 hours. This is the same as a half-time internship over the Summer quarter (11 weeks * 20 hr/week). We nonetheless encourage students to seek opportunities equivalent to full-time internships, as they will allow them to build their skillset more effectively before graduation.
  • The nature of the work must be technical in nature.
  • The work must be supervised. It must be possible for the MPCS to speak with your supervisor to verify that you have fulfilled the requirements of the internship requirement. Self-guided work is not acceptable.
  • If you are a full-time student on a student visa, you are eligible for degree based CPT as part of the 12-course program. The 9-course program does not have a required internship and is not eligible for CPT. If you complete an internship on CPT, you must complete 12-courses in the MPCS to receive your degree. 
  • If you are a part-time student, you may request to have your current job, or a separate project at work, count as the internship requirement for the 12-course program as long as the work being done will allow you to apply new skills you have learned in the MPCS. Approval for this requires the following:
    • A formal request submitted to masters-admin@cs.uchicago.edu about the nature of the project/work, how you will be applying the skills learned in your classes and how the work you will be doing will further your learning in your chosen specialization. This request should include the time frame of the project/work and number of hours required.
    • Along wtih the student request, you should submit a letter from your supervisor verifying the work that will be done.
    • The request must be submitted before your last quarter in the program. Applications for graduation will not be approved until the request has been submitted and accepted.
    • At the end of your project/work, we require a second letter from your supervisor stating that the work has been completed.