Practicum in Women's, Gender, & Sexuality Studies

A student gesturing and speaking

Each Spring, Women's, Gender, and Sexuality Studies (WGSS) offers the  Practicum course. 

During the semester-long practicum, students gain invaluable real-world skills in policy and community work on issues relating to women and gender. Students meet for a weekly seminar and complete readings and written work that integrates theory and practice. In addition to WGSS graduate students, junior and senior undergraduate WGSS majors may also enroll in the practicum with approval from the WGSS Program. Graduate students in other degree programs are welcome.

    For Students

    The WGSS Program can offer information on internship opportunities at a wide range of organizations, and advice to help students find and choose a placement, but students are ultimately responsible for arranging their own internships or other placements with organizations.  

    For Spring 2020, the WGSS Program is experimenting with some changes in the Practicum requirements such as reducing the minimum required internship placement hours to only a minimum of 40 hours for the semester, especially for unpaid internship internships.  We realize that many organizations will only take students willing to work more hours but we want to make the Practicum viable for students with other work and family obligations. In subsequent semesters, interested students should check with the WGSS Program for details on the Practicum requirements, suggestions for finding a placement, and a sample syllabus from previous years.



    • Consult with the WGSS practicum instructor if you have questions about the course or the internships you are considering. Register for practicum course
    • Register for practicum course
    • Contact organizations, submit applications, arrange interviews, negotiate arrangements and the agreement with organization in November and December
    • Negotiate the agreement (PDF). The student, a placement supervisor at the organization, and the WGSS Practicum Instructor will sign the agreement, which must be signed by the first class meeting in January.


    • January–Early May: Complete practicum internship and coursework during the Spring semester. 



    For Organizations Seeking Interns

    The nationally recognized practicum of the WGSS Program places graduate students and selected advanced undergraduates with advocacy, policy and community organizations based in the Washington, D.C. region. We invite organizations that can provide students with a substantive, professional-level assignment to participate in the practicum.


    • Placement lasts for a negotiated period during the spring semester (January–April), with each student completing a minimum of 40 hours over the semester.
    • Organizations are encouraged but not required to offer stipends.
    • Students will contact organizations and arrange interviews in December for an internship beginning in January.
    • The student and an organization representative will negotiate arrangements and sign an agreement.

    Request an Intern

    Please provide some background information on your organization or company by filling out the intern request form or sending information to [email protected].

    Request an Intern