DePaul University College of LAS > Academics > Women's and Gender Studies > Student Resources > Service Learning and Internships

Service Learning and Internships

The Department of Women's and Gender Studies offers students a unique educational experience that seeks to blend theory with praxis, combining the rigorous academic scholarship of the classroom with practical experience in the community.

Women's & Gender Studies Service Learning and Internship Program

One of the central features of our program is the WGS Service Learning and Internship Program (SLIP), founded in 2013 to support community-based internships and to build stronger connections for our students in the community as they consider long-term career possibilities. Students who participate in an internship for course credit, whether in the course or as independent study, will be required to be on site at least 8-10 hours per week for the duration of the quarter.

One of the ways students can engage in an internship experience is by registering for WGS 352/452: Gender, Community and Activism: Community Based Learning in WGS, which is an experiential/service learning internship course designed to provide students with an experience that integrates the feminist-informed theoretical work of the classroom with practical application in the community; students earn course credit while interning with a community organization that aligns with their scholarship, activism and interests. WGS 352/452 offers students a space for reading and reflection, as well as a professional workshop series that focuses on skill development.

Alternatively, students can secure an independent internship and still earn course credit. For those that select this option, they will work on an individual basis with a sponsoring faculty member and can enroll in WGS 392 (undergraduate) or WGS 499 (graduate) for course credit. Planning is required in advance of the quarter during which the internship is conducted; in order to receive university credit, students should work with a Women's and Gender Studies professor prior to the internship to develop a plan for research, reflection, and writing which will supplement their work in the field.

In addition to earning class credit for internships through WGS 352/452 or independent study, students may also find a variety of internship and community-based service learning opportunities through our internship board.

Students may receive credit interning at organizations in a variety of areas within the interdisciplinary field of Women's and Gender Studies such as child and youth services, health and welfare agencies, social justice organizations, legal advocacy organizations, and media institutions among others. Students in WGS have interned at some of the following organizations:
  • Vida/SIDA
  • Lambda Legal
  • Center on Halsted
  • Chicago Women's Health Center
  • Rape Victim Advocates
  • Howard Brown
  • Northwest Side Housing Authority
  • RefugeeOne
Take Back the Halls: Ending Violence in Relationships and Schools

Through the Department of Women's and Gender Studies and the Beck Research Initiative, we offer exciting opportunities for students to engage in faculty-led projects and programs; this includes one of our central programs, Take Back the Halls: Ending Violence in Relationships and Schools (TBTH), which is a teen-dating violence prevention and community activism program that has been operating in Chicago Public Schools since 2002.  The TBTH internship allows students from DePaul University, along with trained staff, to facilitate weekly anti-violence workshops in area high schools. Although Take Back the Halls is a year-long internship, running from October through May, the corresponding class - WGS 387: Teen Violence Prevention - is offered during the winter quarter.

Women's Legislative Leadership Program

The Women's Legislative Leadership Project (WLLP) is an intensive policy training program that equips women, their allies, and their organizations with the capacity to advocate successfully for sound policies that ensure economic stability, equity, and justice for women in Illinois, with a focus on benefiting older women of color and their communities.  The program accepts 1-2 DePaul University WGS students each year and students can receive course credit by enrolling in WGS 392 (undergraduate) or WGS 499 (graduate) . Please contact Anna Assenmacher, Assistant Director of the Beck Research Initiative for Women, Gender and Community, to learn more.

DePaul University

Beyond the WGS Department, DePaul University offers students a broad range of programs to support internship and service learning experiences during the course of their studies.