UNPAID Internship?

Need SPA.

When a Fulton student will be earning academic credit for an internship, an agreement must be in place between the employer, student and ASU. For nearly all students who have a paid internship, that agreement is incorporated in your internship course registration process. If your internship is unpaid, there is an additional document called a Student Placement Agreement (SPA) that is required for you to continue with the internship registration process.

  • If the internship is PAID skip the below Student Placement Agreement (SPA) verification step- you don’t need to do it. Review your program’s website or email your academic advising department for their specific internship registration process, which incorporates SPA elements into their internship registration form.
    • On rare occasion, the career center becomes involved when the internship is paid and the company refuses to sign your academic department’s internship registration paperwork. If this is the situation, follow the unpaid instructions below and include in the email that the company is refusing to sign.
  • If the internship is UNPAID a valid Student Placement Agreement (SPA) between ASU and the employer is required. Follow the below instructions prior to completing your academic program’s specific internship registration process.
  • If the internship is with ASU, (like at an ASU research center, ASU lab, ASU IT department or similar) you do not need any Student Placement Agreement (SPA). ASU does not enter into agreements with itself.

For your Unpaid internship OR your Paid internship but the company refuses to sign your program’s internship course registration form, ensuring there is a Student Placement Agreement (SPA), is just one step in the internship course registration process. Each student must check with their academic advising department for their specific internship registration paperwork process and deadlines. Please complete this Student Placement Agreement Request form, then email it to [email protected] Please use “<Your Name> / <Company Name>- SPA request” as the subject line. The Career Center will check if there is an existing agreement.

  • If there is a current agreement, you will receive an email confirming there is one in place. Please ensure you are following your department’s process for registering for the internship. The UNPAID /Employer Refuses to Sign course registration paperwork SPA process is only one element of the internship course registration process.
  • If there is not an existing agreement, the Career Center will send instructions and the agreement to your contact OR you can send this webpage link to your contact. Usually a company will elevate this agreement to a department that has authority to sign on the company’s behalf.
    • Depending on the company, it can take several days or weeks for someone from their company to review and sign the SPA, so ensure your contact is aware of the process.
    • Please ask your supervisor to include you in the email when they submit the signed SPA forms to ASU so you know they have done their part. If your academic department hasn’t already permitted you to continue with the registration process, they typically will allow you to continue with the registration process once ASU receives the signed SPA from the company even before the company receives a returned copy. Once ASU receives the forms, it can take 5-7 business days to get signatures and to return a copy to the company.
      • On occasion, a company will neither sign the program’s internship course registration form nor the Student Placement Agreement. This may mean you might not be able to register for the internship course, which means you will not earn academic credit for the internship. For international students, that may mean you cannot access CPT work authorization and must pursue Pre-OPT. In these cases please let the career center know, by responding to the email chain from the original inquiry. The career center will contact the company to try to resolve any SPA issues.
      • On rare occasion, your academic department might allow you to conditionally register for the internship course once the request has been sent to the employer. Your academic department may require a final SPA verification prior to you starting the internship. Please ensure you are following your department’s process for registering for the internship.

In order for ASU students to receive academic credit for their pending UNPAID internship experiences, ASU requires a valid Student Placement Agreement between the employer and ASU to help ensure a supportive learning environment. Additionally, if your company cannot sign individual student internship course registration forms, the company could complete an ASU Fulton Schools of Engineering-wide Student Placement Agreement, covering all Fulton students.

  • Please read the Student Placement Agreement Instructions. Forward the instructions and the student placement agreement to the person who has signature authority in your company if it is not you.
  • Complete the contact sheet and sign the Unpaid Student Placement Agreement and/or Paid Student Placement Agreement.
    • If your company has questions about the Student Placement Agreement, wants to propose changes to the standard agreement(s) or has a substitute document for ASU’s consideration, please contact the career center first.
    • Return the typed contact sheet and signed agreement(s) .pdf documents to [email protected], using “<Student Name> / <Company Name>- SPA completion” as the subject line.
    • Once it has been signed by the company and approved by ASU, the company will receive an electronic copy.
    • If your company cannot sign a Student Placement Agreement, the student might not be able to earn academic credit. Some programs require an internship for academic credit and graduation. International students require registration in an internship course to access their CPT work authorization and by extension need a signed SPA. Please contact the career center to discuss concerns or to be referred to the appropriate academic department to discus possible alternatives.
    • Thank you for supporting Fulton Schools of Engineering students in their educational and professional pursuits.

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