Internship Descriptions

These descriptions are intended to provide general information about potential internships for the Western Michigan University interdisciplinary health services program. They do not necessarily cover all details about a position, nor is there any guarantee that a particular internship will be available. Needs change within organizations, and so internship opportunities and the duties they encompass may change accordingly. Also, many sites accept only one intern per semester, and the members of the internship placement team do their best to send the student for whom the internship seems to be the best fit.

If you are interested in a particular internship represented here, please identify that internship description on your application. If you have already submitted your application materials and find an internship listed here that you would like to pursue, please email Kathy Lewis Ginebaugh at kathy.lewis@wmich.edu with the internship description and the information will be added to your application file.

Kalamazoo and surrounding areas

  • Alzheimer's/dementia care facility
  • Blindness and low vision
  • Business/financial office
  • Child development center
  • Clinic
  • Community medical services
  • Community organization
  • Crisis intervention agency*
  • Educational institution or affiliate
  • Fund- or awareness-raising organization
  • Home-care agency
  • Medical center
  • Nursing home/long-term care facility
  • Psychological testing center
  • Rehabilitation facility
  • Senior center
  • Veteran's administration: VA-WMU Service Learning Collaboration

Grand Rapids and surrounding area

  • Alzheimer's/dementia care facility
  • Business/financial office
  • Child development center
  • Clinic
  • Community medical services
  • Community organization
  • Educational institution or affiliate
  • Fund- or awareness-raising organization
  • Home-care agency
  • Nursing home/long-term care facility
  • Psychological testing center
  • Rehabilitation facility
  • Senior center

Other locations

  • Alzheimer's/dementia care facility
  • Business/financial office
  • Child development center
  • Clinic
  • Community medical services
  • Community organization
  • Educational institution or affiliate
  • Fund- or awareness-raising organization
  • Home-care agency
  • Nursing home/long-term care facility
  • Psychological testing center
  • Rehabilitation facility
  • Senior center

Concentrations

Administrative
A minor in management or marketing will enhance your opportunities for administrative internships and employment. Consider taking the interdisciplinary health services electives Principles of Health Finance, Administrative Functions in Health Care and Planning in Health Care.

Pre-occupational therapy 
All pre-OT placements in Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids must be made through the IHS office; do not contact sites directly. Many placements are reserved for WMU's OT students. If you already have a contact for an organization you would like to consider, and it is not among the descriptions listed here, please email the contact's name, organizational affiliation, phone number and email address to Kathy Lewis-Ginebaugh at kathy.lewis@wmich.edu. Include in your message what your connection is with the organization.

Pre-physician assistant 
To qualify for admission to a physician's assistant program, you must have had 1,000 hour of patient contact. In WMU's PA program, it is preferable that this patient contact occurs in a paid position, so consider applying for paying jobs that would provide you with this experience.

Pre-nursing 
An internship with patient-care hours would be ideal for this concentration. If you already have or can obtain your CNA, it may be easier for you to find a placement with patient contact.

Minors/certificates

Community heath education 
If you are completing or have completed a community health education minor, you may qualify for special internships.

Education

Integrative holistic health and wellness 
If you are and integrative holistic health and wellness minor, you may use your Bachelor of Science in interdisciplinary health services internship for credit as an independent study. Contact Gay Walker at gay.walker@wmich.edu for further details.

Management/marketing 
If you are completing or have completed a management or marketing minor, you may qualify for special internships.

Nonprofit leadership 
If you are completing or have completed a nonprofit leadership minor, you may qualify for special internships.

Social work

Specialty program in alcohol and drug abuse
The internship you complete for the interdisciplinary health services program may qualify for your specialty program in alcohol and drug abuse certification at the undergraduate level as long as you are completing the undergraduate minor in the program. Students with a specialty program in alcohol and drug abuse minor are responsible for obtaining an internship through the program.

Pre-physician assistant students

WMU's physician assistant program weighs paid patient-care employment higher than volunteer services in their application process. The program is extremely competitive and you need at least 1,000 hours of (preferably paid) direct patient care. You may start on these hours (at least 200 of them) in your interdisciplinary health services internship. You must apply for paid employment. Once you get a job, we can usually work with your employer to count it as an internship. (Apply for any job except those with a ** designation.)

  • Fountains Assisted Care Living:
  • MRM/Acclaim
    • Home health care for a range of ages, disabilities and needs.
    • Acclaim focuses more on brain and spinal-cord injuries.
      • They would prefer students who want to work more than two days a week and/or four months for the Acclaim option.
    • Both are paid positions.
    • Go to 3408 Miller Road to complete an application. At the top of the app, write that you are an IHS student at WMU, Attn: Teresa and Charlie. (Teresa and Charlie own both MRM and Acclaim.)
  • Friendship Village
  • Heritage Community
  • Tender care
  • Borgess Medical Center
  • Bronson Methodist Hospital
  • Hospice Care of Southwest Michigan
  • Sherman Lake (YMCA) Camp
    • Summer only

Also search BroncoJobs, the Kalamazoo Gazette and Kalamazoo Valley Community College's job listings. Look for direct-care positions in assisted living; home health care; and mental health, foster care and group homes.

The following organization uses only volunteers, but it is a good option:

  • Oasis of Hope (Grand Rapids)**
    • Christian organization
    • Not paid, but held in high esteem by PA program, as this organization is run by PA program alumni
    • Open for limited hours (see website)
    • Oasis of Hope website

If you have already worked a significant number of hours in paid employment and you need some diversity for your PA application, talk with Kathy Lewis-Ginebaugh at kathy.lewis@wmich.edu about additional opportunities.

 

* Requires advanced planning. If interested, contact Kathy Lewis Ginebaugh at kathy.lewis@wmich.edu

** Unpaid position—may not be suitable for students wishing to enter WMU's physician assistant program.