Frequently Asked Questions

Why is participating in an Experiential Learning (EL) opportunity desirable?

EL is invaluable for giving students the opportunity to:

  • try out career paths,
  • apply theoretical knowledge in real-world environments,
  • professionalize,
  • gain work experience that will help to make them competitive on the job market, and
  • build confidence in their skills, abilities, and strengths.
As well, EL experiences show SASAH students that, in the arts and humanities, they are acquiring knowledge and developing both hard and soft (transferable) skills that can be adapted to many different work environments.

How many EL credits do I need to fulfill my SASAH program requirements?

Students must complete a 1.0 EL credit. This can be done as one 1.0-credit experience (a minimum of 240 work hours) or two 0.5-credit experiences (a minimum of 120 work hours each).

When should I complete my EL credit(s)?

Students can undertake an internship or community-engaged learning (CEL) at any point in their undergraduate career. Note, however, that students in first and second year can count only a 0.5 EL credit and would then complete the other 0.5 credit in third or fourth year.

Students can count experiences in the summer, fall, or winter, and the work term does not have to coincide with an academic terms’ start and end dates. Students must, however, contact SASAH’s EL Specialist before or, at least, at the very beginning of a work experience to have it counted.

What types of EL opportunities can be counted toward SASAH's EL requirement?

The kind of work we count for the EL credit must . . .

  • be mentored in an ongoing way by a professional in the field.
  • give a realistic preview of a career.
  • offer meaningful work related to a student's field of study or career interest.
  • allow for career exploration and development.
  • encourage the development of new hard and soft/transferable skills.

We will consider counting opportunities in almost any area, from the arts/culture and non-profit to the tech and corporate sectors. These can include:

  • Communications and social media
  • Editing & writing (e.g., journalism, grant writing, and copywriting)
  • Educational programming
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Event coordination
  • Fundraising
  • Gallery and museum curation
  • Marketing
  • Office administration
  • Program administration
  • Project management
  • Public relations
  • Research & analysis
  • Social-service delivery
  • Technical writing
  • Video production
  • Web design

What organizations do you partner with?

SASAH works with local, national, and global organizations to count internships and other work experiences and CEL opportunities for academic credit for its students.

We work on an ongoing basis with several organizations and programs within Western to develop internships and CELs specifically for SASAH students. Students are also welcome to find opportunities on their own. If the opportunity is deemed eligible and the organization is willing to help us do so, we will work with the student’s supervisor to count the experience for credit.

For a list of past and current partners, see our SASAH Partners page.

How do I find an EL opportunity?

Students have several options:

  • they can apply for internships and CELs offered through our partners (as with any job application, acceptance is not guaranteed),
  • they can apply to be assigned to a fall and/or winter CEL through the Student Success Centre (4th-year students only),
  • they can find their own summer-, fall-, or winter-term internship or CEL through their network or job-search sites, such as Western Connect, Glassdoor, LinkedIn, and Monster, and request that it be counted for credit.
If a great EL opportunity presents itself, the student should contact SASAH’s EL Specialist ASAP. In most cases, the student will need to complete a proposal and submit it to the EL Coordinator for consideration.

Can I count a paid internship for my EL credit?

Students can count paid and unpaid opportunities in the non-profit, public, and for-profit sectors.

Why are there assignments attached to an EL opportunity?

The EL curriculum emphasizes the need for students to reflect on and teach others about their projects or placements.

The assignments are designed to encourage students to . . .

  • analyze and evaluate their experiences,
  • learn about themselves and about types of careers that may be open to them,
  • think about their skills, abilities, and strengths and how they have applied them,
  • consider if they would want to pursue what they did in their work experience as a career.
  • further develop soft skills—like critical analysis, communication, and public speaking—that are highly desirable in the workplace.

Whom do I contact with questions I may have about SASAH’s Experiential Learning requirement?

Contact SASAH's EL Specialist, Dr. Barbara Bruce, at