November 03, 2011

Extern Program application deadline is Nov. 18

by Kathy Dillard

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- Juniors and seniors at Southern Illinois University Carbondale can apply now to participate in the University’s award-winning Extern Program.  The application deadline is Nov. 18 at 4 p.m.

The SIU Alumni Association and Student Alumni Council, in conjunction with SIU Carbondale’s undergraduate colleges, administer the Extern Program during the University’s spring break March 12-16.

Established in 1984 by the SIU Alumni Association, the Extern Program matches juniors and seniors with alumni and friends in professional work environments throughout the country to learn more about their chosen career fields.

Throughout spring break, externs are given the opportunity to apply skills learned in the classroom to a professional setting.  Externs participate in meetings, attend employee training sessions, and complete projects.  Sponsors offer career advice to students and guidance on how to obtain jobs within the industry. 

Tuesday Ashner, director of student, college and constituent relations for the Alumni Association says, “We cannot thank sponsors enough for giving their time and expertise to offer this life-changing experience to our students.”

Nearly 190 SIU Carbondale students were placed in externships in 2011.  Extern presents students with the opportunity to make valuable career contacts, and approximately 45 percent of the participants are offered future opportunities with their sponsoring companies or organizations. 

Participating students must meet a minimum GPA requirement, be an undergraduate with at least 56 credit hours or have a second-year associate degree, and be enrolled at the University for both fall and spring semesters.  They are also required to complete an application process, be interviewed, contact the sponsor prior to the externship, and attend a JobBound seminar and a recognition ceremony. 

In the past year, the Extern Program has placed students in a variety of businesses and institutions, including Abacus Financial, Shedd Aquarium, Boeing, Chicago Blackhawks, Cook County States Attorney Office, NBC, Country Music Television, and Mitsubishi Motors North America.

Students may apply online by visiting the SIU Alumni Association website at For more information, please call 618-453-2408.