Internship Expectations and Requirements

  • Expose interns to the activities/responsibilities that a counseling professional would experience in this setting and provide opportunities for interns' participation according to their educational needs, demonstrated abilities, and professional interests.
  • Work with interns in selecting programs, projects, and research activities relevant to the site that will help interns enhance their counseling skills and professional school counselor disposition.
  • Meet a minimum of one hour each week for counseling supervision sessions and be available for on-site emergency. Additional administrative supervision time can be expected, but not substituted for counseling supervision.
  • Ensure that interns have opportunities to accumulate the agreed upon clock-hours as specified in internship plan form.
  • Assist intern in securing client consent for audio-recording of individual counseling sessions to be submitted for university supervisor review of intern skills. Audio- recordings are submitted via HIPAA compliant secure platforms and destroyed after university supervisor Samples should be at least 30 minutes in length working with at least two different clients over time.
  • For each NIU semester that interns are contracted at your site, review "live" samples of interns' involvement with clients. This work sample must be at least 30 minutes in length, can be reviewed by direct observations or by recordings, and can include various types of professional practice (individual/group/family counseling, presenting curriculum, or facilitating staff presentations/trainings). Live observations and observation feedback form should be completed each semester the intern is working at the site. At least two live observations should be completed, once before midterm evaluations and at least once between midterm and final evaluations.
  • On a weekly or bi-weekly basis, validate (with signature) the amount of clock hours interns spent on various counseling related activities. Interns will complete the internship log forms on a weekly basis. The university supervisor will also validate these log forms.
  • Collaborate with the university supervisor on interns' progress and complete a midterm and final written evaluation of interns' performance and potential.
  • Review and respond to university communications. Attend any site supervision approval workshops offered by the NIU Counseling program field-experience office for semesters you have contracted to supervise interns.

  • Ensure that the Internship Plan meets individualized educational and professional school counseling development needs of interns as well as counseling program expectations. The plan agreement needs to be completed by both the intern and the site supervisor. The university supervisor may collaborate if necessary and will also approve the Once completed, the intern, site supervisor, and university supervisor should validate the plan agreement with their respective signature forms.
  • Verify that interns have current liability insurance during counseling
  • Remain in contact with the site supervisor throughout the semester. Conduct at least one in-person site visit each semester interns are contracted at the Phone or e-mail contact is expected on at least TWO occasions: at the beginning of the semester and at the end of the semester. This policy applies independently for each semester the intern is enrolled in NIU internship seminar.
  • If concerns arise, the university supervisor is typically the first level of mediation. If issues cannot be resolved at this level, the NIU counseling field-experience coordinator will intervene.
  • The final evaluation document should reflect the internship It is the university supervisor's responsibility to see that this is done prior to the site supervisor completing the evaluation and before university semester evaluations are due (grades).
  • Confirm that the periodic review of the interns work performance is being conducted by the site supervisor. This review must include observations and/or recordings.
  • Solicit evaluative feedback from site supervisor and assume primary responsibility for assigning grade (S/U/I). If an intern, requests and is approved for an Incomplete in internship, the university supervisor is responsible for completing grade change paperwork once the intern has indicated they have fulfilled their site and university contracted clock and credit hours.

  • Establish agreed upon internship plan, hours and dates for each site (maximum two- sites per semester). This may involve a modification to the internship agreement if a particular project the intern is involved in runs beyond the expected end date for
  • Provide documentation for liability insurance prior to first day of internship work at site and accruing internship Interns will NOT be able to count internship hours until insurance coverage is documented with NIU.
  • Conduct yourself in a professional manner (i.e., arriving to the site on time, adequately completing tasks by their designated deadlines, wearing appropriate attire, etc.).
  • Maintain accurate internship logs of activities using the current NIU counseling program log form and obtain site supervisor's bi-weekly hours approval. Log sheets need to be completed by interns on a weekly basis (daily updates are recommended).
  • Periodically (monthly recommended) review the number of direct contact and indirect hours with the site supervisor. It is your responsibility to keep track of your hours and inform your university and site supervisor of the progression of those hours.
  • If an intern has two internship placements, 300 of those hours must be accrued at one primary site location.
  • School counseling interns have specific required internship experiences to complete over the course of their entire internship Specifically, School Counseling Interns must log a minimum of three consecutive hours per day on days when performing internship responsibilities at each school site.
  • Meet a minimum of one hour each week for supervision conducted by the site supervisor. Arrive for supervision with questions or concerns, growth considerations, and professional-strengths comments.
  • Conduct yourself in accordance with the professional ethics and codes for counseling as well as for the respective internship sites. School counselors-in-training will refer to both ACA and ASCA guidelines and ethical codes.
  • Seek information and knowledge to be successful in the counseling Interns are highly encouraged attend conferences such as ICA, ISCA, or ASCA.
  • Participate in projects, programs, research activities, and other opportunities that have been agreed upon with the site supervisor.
  • Complete all appropriate responsibilities agreed upon with site
  • Frequently evaluate and discuss progress with both the site supervisor and university supervisor. This may involve renegotiating the initial internship plan/goals.
  • Make arrangements for the site supervisor to review "live" samples of your work each semester the intern is enrolled at NIU. A minimum of two, 30-minute samples involving direct work with student-clients either by observation or a Documentation of reviews are included with Intern's Midterm and Final Evaluations each semester.
  • Make arrangements for the university supervisor to review audio-recorded samples of your work each semester you are enrolled at NIU. Consent for recording should be acquired, with assistance from site supervisor, from clients or client guardian with client assent before any recording is initiated. Secure upload to NIU's HIPAA compliant platform is the only appropriate way to share recordings with university supervisor.
  • Contact the university supervisor immediately if there are concerns related to internship.

Upon completion of the internship, school counseling interns must be exposed to activities that allow SC interns to demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Classroom Curriculum: Teach at least one developmental counseling class on a topic from one of the three domains. Have someone observe the session and gather feedback from Class presentation may come from your curriculum project. Optional: Collect feedback from students on the session.
  • Group Experience: Lead a minimum of 4 group sessions with a co-leader or on your own. Write up a brief report on the type of group and pertinent information about the group. Optional: Get feedback from group members
  • Exceptional Students: Attend at least two IEP or 504 meetings and discuss with your supervisor the different roles of stakeholders.
  • Assessment and/or Evaluation: Spend time talking with your supervisor about doing an assessment at your school that will help bring information about student (or faculty or parent) need to the attention of your counseling Build upon what you learned in class. Organize, design, total your findings and report them to the chair or supervisor of the counseling program. Document this on your time sheet and with your university supervisor. Discuss what counselors could do to respond to these needs. Optional: present this to the principal of the school.
  • Consultation: Document interactions with parents and how the issues were Consult at least once with a teacher over a student/classroom concern.
  • Career Counseling: Conduct at least three career counseling sessions. Do these conjointly if Discuss this experience with your supervisor and in your journals.
  • Crisis Plan: Read the crisis plan for your Discuss with your supervisor what your role is as a counselor when there is a crisis. Document that you have done this with your university supervisor.
  • Suicide Response: Discover what the protocol is for students who are suicidal or talk about suicide ideation in a session. Discuss this with your supervisor.
  • Classroom/Teacher Visits: Visit at least two representative classes in your school to familiarize yourself with what you don't know about curriculum. Write about these in your journal. You must visit at least two classrooms from varying arenas such as vocational education, physical education, special education, dual credit courses, etc.
  • College Counseling: Meet with at least three students to discuss college Write about these in your journal. Consider what resources you need to do this effectively.

Recommended Experiences for SC Interns

  • Systems Support: Review with supervisor the management activities that establish, maintain, and enhance the total guidance and counseling program. Participate in meetings, plans, or evaluations of such supports if possible.
  • Educational/Employability Planning: Administer and interpreting test and inventory results, and assist students with school-to-work transition
  • Professional Development: Participate in service training activities, counseling staff meetings, and relevant teacher in-service meetings. Attend outside conferences or workshops designed for professional school counselors.

Contact Us

TJ Schoonover, SCI Coordinator

Kimberly A. Hart, Admissions Coordinator

Department of Counseling and Higher Education

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