August 13, 2015

Extern Program applications now available

CARBONDALE, Ill. – The SIU Alumni Association is again accepting applications for Southern Illinois University Carbondale students to participate in its award-winning extern program. The application deadline is Oct. 9. 

Juniors and seniors are invited to apply to participate in the program, which is during the university’s spring break, March 14 to 18. Application forms, along with information on the program’s policies and application instructions, are available on the SIU Alumni Association’s website at

For 32 years, the initiative has helped nearly 4,000 students gain professional experience in their chosen career fields over spring break. The SIU Alumni Association is also taking applications from business owners and companies to host externs during that week. Those applications are also due by Oct. 9. 

Established in 1984 by the SIU Alumni Association, the Extern Program each year helps about 100 students complete externships in workplaces across the United States. Students prepare for the experience during the year and are matched with SIU Carbondale alumni and friends in career fields in which they have expressed interest. 

The SIU Alumni Association Board of Directors awards travel assistance to help externs with the expense of traveling to the students’ extern location. Last year, 31 students received travel expense assistance. 

Alumni business owners are asked to consider hosting one or more externs during the week. Businesses incur no required expenses for hosting a student, and all liability and health insurance is provided. Hosts, however, typically offer students meals, accommodations, or stipends. Students and their hosts are matched by the beginning of February, and hosts are asked to plan an itinerary for their students. 

The Extern Program has a history of helping students launch their careers and many externs are eventually offered internships or even jobs at the hosting companies. 

More information is also available by calling 618/453-2408, or by email at