Internship Courses for Credit (Master's Students)


Viterbi manages several internship courses for credit options for Master Students, providing a great opportunity for students to gain practical, hands-on work experience while earning course credit. Students will need to review this page, identify eligibility, requirements, and application process to enroll in an internship course and obtain d-clearance.

Student Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible to enroll in  ENGR 596, 597, and 598 please review below:


  • In the Fall/Spring semester, the internship must be a minimum of 10 hours but can not exceed 20 hours
  • In the Summer, the internship can be 40 hours per week 

Internship Length
To ensure a rewarding internship experience and earn academic credit for your internship course, internships must be 

  • At least 12 weeks during Fall and Spring semesters
  • At least 10 weeks during the Summer semester

International Students

  • Time at USC
    • Maintained full-time F-1 student status for at least one academic year (fall and spring).
    • If you attended undergraduate or Master's programs at a U.S. institution, you may be eligible for CPT earlier.
    • Please see a VASE advisor in OHE-106 and OIS CPT Website for more information.
  • GPA
    • Fall/Spring CPT: 3.0 +
    • Summer CPT: 2.75+

    Domestic Students

    • Time at USC - no requirement
    • GPA
      • Fall/Spring CPT: 3.0 +
      • Summer CPT: 2.75+
      • If a student has a GPA of 0.00, VGAS will process if the student is meeting satisfactory academic progress.  Meet with a VGAS advisor if you have questions.

      Course Options

      Master Students can enroll in ENGR 596, 597 or 598,  there are some eligibility requirements for some courses.  Here is a breakdown of each course

      • ENGR 596 (1 unit)
        • Needs faculty approval on Myviterbi
        • Supervised by faculty member in their department
        • AME, ASTE, BME, CE, ISE, SAE students who are interested in taking ENGR596 course for credit must consult their department advisor to confirm that the course fits into your course plan and must find a supervising faculty member
          • If you cannot find a faculty supervisor and don’t want to take the course for credit, please take ENGR 597
        • Can be repeated
      • ENGR 597 (.5 unit)
        • Pre-requisite for 598
        • Does not count toward degree requirements
        • All Viterbi Master's students can enroll
        •  International Students in Computer Science and Electrical & Computer Engineering should take ENGR 597 for their first internship. You will concurrently gain practical work experience in an internship and participate in class to develop your communication skills.
        • Computer Science and Electrical & Computer Engineering Master’s students must successfully complete the Professional Writing and Communication for Internships course.
        • Cannot be repeated
      • ENGR 598 (0 Units)
        • This is only available to International Master's and Ph.D. students who have successfully completed ENGR 597
        • Does not count toward degree requirements
        • Can be repeated

      Still Not Sure What to choose???

      The follow videos will explain which options you have based on your major.

      CS/DS, ECE, and Mork Students

      AME, ASTE, BME, CE, ISE, SAE Students

      Application Process


      Step #1 Obtain Offer Letter (Sample Offer Letter)
      Obtain an offer letter that includes all of the following (If you are unable to obtain all of the information in one document, please combine all documents or communication from your employer in one pdf document):

      • The offer letter must feature the company’s letterhead
      • Student’s full legal name (a nickname or alias will not be accepted
      • Physical location of where the student will be working
      • Job Description of what you are doing in this job, and it must align with your major
      • How many hours will you work per week, it must include precisely a number, or a range, such as 20 hours or 30-40 hours (it can not simply state part-time or full-time)
      • Start and End dates that align with course registration dates

      Step #2 Student Determines Correct Course:
      It is the student's responsibility to check in with their academic advisor and discuss how each course will or will not impact academic progress, including credits needed for graduation.

      Step #3 Identify Faculty (For ENGR 596 ONLY):
      The student is responsible for seeking out a faculty within their academic department that agrees to grade their report. Please make sure you know which faculty has agreed to grade your report prior to submitting your application.  If the faculty member you choose denies your request in the system you will need to start all over and submit a new application.

      Step #4 Submit Internship Course Request (ICR) Application on
      Students must complete their ICR application within the university registration deadline in myviterbi.

      Step #5 Register for Course
      Once you obtain d-clearance, register for ENGR 596, 597 or 598 immediately. You will not be able to download the pdf for Trojan International without first enrolling in the course you are approved for.  Please login into and review notes left by staff to see which Section # to register for.

      Additional Step for International Students:

      Step #6 Complete the Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Form: International students must submit a CPT I-20 Request Form to the Office of International Services' (OIS) Trojan International System. Students must be enrolled in the internship course before submitting the request to OIS.

      Dates & Deadlines

      Fall 2023

      Spring 2024

      Summer 2024

      Application Start Date

      July 18, 2023

      November 27, 2023

      April 10, 2024

      Application Deadline

      Oct 16

      March 5th

      June 25, 2024

      Internship duration: (If it is your final semester)

      Aug 21 – Dec 13

      Jan 8 – May 10

      May 13-Aug 6, 2024

      Internship duration: (If it is NOT your final semester)

      Aug 21 – Jan 5

      Jan 8 – May 10

      May 13-Aug 23

      Deadline to submit final report

      Check with
      Faculty Supervisor

      Check with
      Faculty Supervisor

      Check with
      Faculty Supervisor

      CPT & International Student Information

      • International students must register for an internship course during the semester if they wish to do an internship and obtain CPT.
      • Follow the internship course syllabus and contact the Graduate Academic Services and Programs (GASP) Office or Viterbi Career Connections (VCC) for your questions regarding the internship course.
      • If you cannot continue the internship, please contact GASP Office as soon as possible.
      • Remove your application from any pending recruiting processes after you accept one offer.

      NOTE: As part of your agreement for CPT, you agree not to accept additional job offers after submitting a CPT application for the semester. Internship offers from new employers will not be approved. If you have received an additional internship offer after submitting for CPT, the VCC staff will do their best to assist you with negotiating and retaining both internships. We also encourage you to visit the Job & Internship Tool Kit for Evaluating & Negotiating Offers or schedule an appointment with a career advisor on Gateway for tips on negotiating a start date for next semester with the second employer. Successful completion of the course is required to be considered for future CPT authorizations. If a student receives a No Credit (NC), they will be ineligible for future CPT.

      Hours and Location

      If it's your final semester, you can work full-time if your course enrollment is no more than 4 credits (not including CPT credit). 10-20 hours per week is considered part-time and 21-40 per week is considered full-time.

      • Full-time CPT (1 class and 1 internship class)
      • Part-time CPT

      If it's NOT your final semester, you can only work part-time with full-time course enrollment

      • Full-time CPT
      • Part-time CPT (full-time class enrollment)

      **Students cannot take academic difficulty RCL with CPT simultaneously.

      All International Students must adhere to In-Person Learning Requirements

      Please review the In-Person Learning Requirements for Viterbi Students Participating in CPT. Viterbi will only approve fall or spring CPT applications for out-of-area internship opportunities after students agree to the following conditions identified in the memo.  If your internship opportunity allows you to agree to the conditions identified in the memo, then you should have no problem getting course approval.

      Still Have Questions?

      Check Out Where Viterbi Students Interned Over Summer…

      Published on April 9th, 2024

      Last updated on May 20th, 2024