10 colleges with the highest internship rates

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The U.S. News Short List, separate from our overall rankings, is a regular series that magnifies individual data points in hopes of providing students and parents a way to find which undergraduate or graduate programs excel or have room to grow in specific areas. Be sure to explore The Short List: College, The Short List: Grad School and The Short List: Online Programs to find data that matter to you in your college or grad school search.

Good grades, glowing recommendations and a first-rate degree aren't always enough to score a job after college graduation.

Employers are looking for students who demonstrate leadership experience and teamwork, according to the National Association of Colleges and Employers. And those skills are often developed outside of the classroom, including through college internships.
On average, 38 percent of the class of 2013 participated in an internship during their undergraduate careers, according to data reported by 314 ranked colleges and universities in a U.S. News survey. At the 10 schools with the highest rates of participation, at least 88 percent of undergraduates completed an internship.

Some of these 10 schools boosted internship participation by making it mandatory. For example, at Harrisburg University of Science and Technology in Pennsylvania, students in every major must spend at least 135 hours at an internship. Each year at Vermont's Bennington College, an off-campus "field work term" launches students into the working world for seven weeks. At Elmira College in New York, students are expected to complete at least 240 hours of career experience.
Below are the schools that produced the largest percentage of interns among the class of 2013. RNP denotes an institution that is ranked in the bottom one-fourth of its rankings category. U.S. News calculates a rank for the school but has decided not to publish it. Schools designated by U.S. News as Unranked were excluded from this list. U.S. News did not calculate a numerical ranking for those programs because they did not meet certain criteria that U.S. News requires to be numerically ranked.

School name (state) Percent of undergrads graduating with internship experience U.S. News rank and category
Bennington College (VT) 100 89 (tie), National Liberal Arts Colleges
Elmira College (NY) 100 9 (tie), Regional Colleges (North)
Harrisburg University of Science and Technology (PA) 100 RNP, National Liberal Arts Colleges
Lasell College (MA) 100 27, Regional Colleges (North)
Wagner College (NY) 100 28 (tie), Regional Universities (North)
Bay State College (MA) 95 RNP, Regional Colleges (North)
Morrisville State College (NY) 95 43, Regional Colleges (North)
Taylor University (IN) 92 1, Regional Colleges (Midwest)
Bentley University (MA) 90 6, Regional Universities (North)
Maine Maritime Academy 88 8, Regional Colleges (North)

Don't see your school on the list? Access the U.S. News College Compass to find data on internship participation, complete rankings and much more. School officials can access historical data and rankings, including of peer institutions, via U.S. News Academic Insights.

U.S. News surveyed nearly 1,800 colleges and universities for our 2014 survey of undergraduate programs. Schools self-reported myriad data regarding their academic programs and the makeup of their student body, among other areas, making U.S. News' data the most accurate and detailed collection of college facts and figures of its kind. While U.S. News uses much of this survey data to rank schools for our annual Best Colleges rankings, the data can also be useful when examined on a smaller scale. U.S. News will now produce lists of data, separate from the overall rankings, meant to provide students and parents a means to find which schools excel, or have room to grow, in specific areas that are important to them. While the data come from the schools themselves, these lists are not related to, and have no influence over, U.S. News' rankings of Best Colleges, Best Graduate Schools or Best Online Programs. The internship data above are correct as of June 9, 2015.

Copyright 2015 U.S. News & World Report

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