CLA Get Ready Program

The CLA Get Ready Program is about preparing students for, and bridging them to, participation in an internship, research, or learning abroad — what we refer to as a high-impact practices. Research shows that students' career outcomes improve with engagement in one of these high-impact experiences. CLA Career Services has designed the Get Ready Program in three phases to support students through this career development process:

Prepare Phase:  All 2nd year CLA President Emerging Scholars enroll in a Career Kickstarter course (CLA 3002) to explore their career interests and build the tools they'll need to find and apply for an internship or other career-related activity. The course connects students to employers through various engagement activities so they can feel prepared and confident networking with employers as they seek out opportunities. 

Bridge Phase: CLA Career Services continues supporting students through group coaching sessions and regular communication about events and opportunities available by career field. As a part of the Bridge Phase, CLA is facilitating short-term industry-based projects at local organizations so students can gain real-world experience and be competitive for internships. 

Make the Most of your Internship Phase: Students are encouraged to take one of the many internship courses in CLA so they engage in reflection to make meaning of their internship experience, connect what they're learning to their liberal arts education — especially the core competencies they are building — and maintain a community of peer support. 

Bridge Phase: Industry Based Projects   

CLA has funding to support our CLA Get Ready Program sophomore cohort of President Emerging Scholars with scholarships as they participate in short-term (1 week) industry-based projects and immersive experiences. We are seeking employer partners that would benefit from having a project completed for their organization and want to engage more deeply in the career development of these students. 

What is an Industry-Based Project?

Industry (or community) based projects are professional assignments that are similar to those given to new hires or interns. Projects are short-term (approx. 40 hours) and are completed by a small team of students. Organizations will need to have a project concept and designate an industry expert mentor for the groups of students who are working on the projects. CLA staff will offer guidance in project development.

Download a brief overview of the CLA Get Ready Program

View the May 2022 Project Descriptions

Participating organizations will:

  • Identify a project concept or need at your organization 
  • Provide clear outcomes for students completing the project 
  • Host students for a site visit or immersive experience to provide context about your organization*
  • Engage in a Project Launch meeting and two check-in meetings during the week
  • Engage in a Project Showcase where students will present their project. The employer mentors will provide project feedback to students. 

*This component is optional, depending on pandemic realities or organizational structure and interest.

Want to learn more or mentor a project? Reach out to Char Myers, CLA Internship Coordinator at


- Build a connection with CLA students and introduce them to the industry

- Provides fresh ideas and a preview of students work

- Ensures new staff are building the skills needed to be successful in your field

- Build your organization’s brand on campus

- Expand your organization’s candidate pool for internships and recruiting needs. Project participants may be your next best employee! 

- Strengthen your capacity to serve your community, develop new initiatives or enhance existing programs with fresh ideas.

In spring 2022, CLA will facilitate projects the week of May 16-20.

For the 2022-2023 academic year, CLA promotes and facilitates projects for students and organizations or alumni during winter break, spring break, or May term to best align with students’ academic commitments. 

You can meet with a CLA staff member to work through the details of your project, as well as your project outcomes. We will help make sure that the project has definition and clear roles for our student teams as they collaborate.

Yes. With the range of student needs and geographic locations over breaks, CLA Career Services would like to have some project options that are completely remote.

CLA has received a generous grant from Target Corp to support our CLA President’s Emerging Scholars in gaining real experience that can fit more easily into their schedules. Students will receive a $600 scholarship for their week of work. Students will not be completing these projects for academic credit.

Yes! While CLA has funding for a period of time to support students in this career development opportunity and organizations in piloting the projects to see how it will benefit them, we welcome financial sponsorship of student teams.


Yes! While the CLA Get Ready Program centers student learning and career growth, our hope is that students will gain real experience creating something tangible. Students will be proud to have an organization use their work — and will be compensated in the form of a scholarship through the grant funding.