Internship Key Dates
Every year we work with the Career Center to establish Internship prep events. The dates for these events will be announced closer to the start of the academic year. The majority of these events will be offered in a hybrid format. Details of the events will be communicated to students directly. See the Career Center page for schedule updates.
Cornerstone DC is part of the AU University College living-learning community (LLC) that combines the best elements of college life—meeting new people, residence hall living, studying with top-notch professors—with a supervised internship experience. Joining the Cornerstone DC community helps you make the most of your first year, which focuses on professional growth and development.
AU Cornerstone accepts between 150 – 170 students. Reservations are accepted on a first-come, first-served basis.
The Cornerstone program is reserved for full time, first year degree-seeking students at AU; therefore, financial aid is available for those who qualify and may be applied to this program. For information about financing options, consult with your university financial aid counselor.
Students of AU Cornerstone are also University College students. AU Cornerstone students are a part of a UC cohort and will be housed with that cohort. Cohort placement is determined by your chosen Complex Problems seminar. Housing & Residence Life at AU will assign students to their cohort floor. Not all members of your UC cohort will be in AU Cornerstone. If you'd like to be with another AU Cornerstone student in your cohort, you can match with them during the roommate matching process.
University College housing is mandatory for Cornerstone students.
AU Cornerstone students will move in August 21, 2024, prior to the general student population. A separate orientation process will be provided to all Living-Learning Community students.
Here is a breakdown of program costs for AU.
There are no additional costs for the Cornerstone D.C. program.
International students in F-1 immigration status are eligible for on-campus professional learning placements for 20 hours/week as part of Cornerstone’s Practicum class. Note that international students in F-1 immigration status are NOT eligible for off-campus placements and therefore receive special support to confirm an on-campus internship placement. After one academic year of full-time AU enrollment, students are eligible for off campus employment and/or internships through Curricular Practical Training.
There are no prerequisites, though some internships may be seeking certain fields of study. You will intern two or three days each week. The Practicum is graded – comprised of the practicum supervisor evaluation (one at mid-term and one at the end of semester; 40% of the final grade) and the Practicum professor's course grade (60% of the final grade).
You are given the tools to secure placement on your own, with guidance from your Cornerstone staff and professors.
You will work with program staff to create and finalize your resume and cover letter. Then, you are given access to the AU Intern and Learn Internship Database, which has hundreds of leads exclusively available for our students. You will also have access to the Handshake platform, which also has hundreds of internship opportunities.
You will also have the opportunity to attend a virtual and in-person internship fair, where you can meet with dozens of organizations to discuss the possibility of securing an internship. In addition, you also work with Cornerstone staff to develop search criteria and strategies to secure placement.
You can obtain a placement in a variety of fields. In the past, students have had placements with Congressional Offices, lobbyists, nonprofits, veterinarian offices, art companies, research institutions, and businesses. The job responsibilities vary from position to position.
After securing an internship, you and your supervisor will create and sign an Experiential Learning Form (ELF), which guarantees that 85% of job responsibilities will be substantial (meaning it should not only be coffee runs or making copies). While these tasks may sometimes occur, your overall experience should provide insight into a particular field.
The Experiential Learning Form is reviewed and signed by your supervisor and Practicum professor.
The AU Cornerstone Practicum provides students the opportunity for active learning, collaboration, teamwork, and interactive discussions. More information on the program courses is available on the curriculum webpage.
You are able to add your name to a waitlist by selecting the waitlist option on the UC and Cornerstone Reservation Form. There are no guarantees a spot will open, though you can still be included in University College.
You have full access to all AU facilities and activities. These include computer labs, library, fitness centers, resource centers, clubs, campus events including noteworthy guest speakers.
You have access to the Student Health Center, located on AU’s campus. DC law states that all students must have health insurance - through their parents or through AU. If you have insurance by way of your parent's plan or your own, you can waive AU Health Insurance through your myAU.american.edu portal. More information about the Student Health Center and insurance requirements is available on the website.