What is the NSCI?
CCWT is launching a new National Survey of College Internships (NSCI) in response to the growing interest in internships and related forms of work-based learning, which are widely seen as “high-impact practices” (HIPs) that contribute to students’ academic, social and career success. However, no national studies on internships exist that focus on issues of equitable access, program structure and student outcomes. In addition, few colleges or universities have the data infrastructure to closely track their students’ experiences with internships, which is essential for supporting faculty, career services professionals, and campus leaderships’ data-based decisions about how to improve these potentially transformative experiences.
The need for data about internships has become even more important with the Covid-19 pandemic and growing concerns about inequitable access to internships (especially unpaid positions), particularly for low-income, first-generation and/or BIPOC students. In documenting obstacles to internships and other indicators of equitable treatment of interns, the NSCI data can help institutions to identify and address these obstacles, which is one way that higher education can help to solve the nation’s growing problems with income inequality, structural racism and workplace discrimination.
The NSCI instrument is organized around the Internship Scorecard framework, which aims to capture three critical elements of a college internship: (1) purpose and prevalence, (2) quality, and (3) equitable access. In capturing these key aspects of an internship, the 58-item NSCI survey goes far beyond merely documenting whether or not a student has taken an internship.
Why Should My College or University Participate in the NSCI?
Participating in the NSCI will ensure that your campus is actively collecting rigorous data on one of the hottest topics in higher education today – that of college students’ future careers, skills and employment prospects. The data from the NSCI can be used to provide updates to institutional leaders and funders about internships on campus, engage in data-based efforts to improve internship programming, and establish baselines so that you can track your students’ experiences over time.
Each participating institution will receive three deliverables: (1) a set of summary reports including a Data Snapshot of key findings, (2) a password-protected interactive Tableau data dashboard so that you can explore the data on your own and download the underlying tabular data, and (3) the raw data from your campus for your own evaluation and program improvement efforts.
Data from all participating institutions in the NSCI will also be aggregated, de-identified and then put into a publicly available data dashboard, where anyone can query the data and do comparative analyses between different types of colleges and universities.
How can my institution participate in the NSCI this year?
Registration is currently open for the inaugural year of the NSCI, which will launch in the Fall of 2021. Use these links to review the terms of participation, and register for the NSCI. Find out more about NSCI pricing in the “Registration & Pricing” section.