Humanitarian Action Internships

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"I have truly enjoyed my internship with Simply Smiles this semester and I can honestly say that I have learned so much. It was an honor to work with such amazing people and to be inspired by their selflessness each week... I think that I can firmly say that it is the field I wish to work in in the future."

— Fall 2016 HA 298 Intern

The Humanitarian Action internship program is designed to foster students’ professional development by working with relevant international organizations, non-profit, media and business organizations, as well as national, state and local government entities dealing with issues of importance to humanitarian crises and disaster response. Through the internship, students will have opportunities to acquire and hone skills and insights; relate theory to practice and practice to theory; and reflect on the meaning and ethics of humanitarian action for their own life, career goals and commitments.

Typically, an internship is a one-semester course and requires 10 to 15 hours per week on site (or 120-150 hours per semester). Other requirements include an e-portfolio containing weekly reflections linked to internship experiences and readings and a final reflection paper. An on-site supervisor and the Humanitarian Action internship coordinator will evaluate the student.

You can also choose to take an internship for credit as part of the requirements toward a Humanitarian Action Minor. HUAC 3980 is a three-credit elective course toward meeting the 18-credit requirement of Humanitarian Action minor. Humanitarian students have interned with locally headquartered agencies including: Save the Children, Simply Smiles, Americares, the International Institute of Connecticut (IICONN) and the Friendship Ambassador Foundation. Stop by Canisius 200 to find out more about HUAC 3980 or email Julie Mughal,


  • Acquire practical experience to complement your academic training in Humanitarian Action.
  • Employ learned concepts, knowledge and skills in an applied setting.
  • Improve skills in applying thinking, problem solving, decision-making, coordination, facilitation and teamwork, including for data gathering and analysis, policy and advocacy.
  • Develop transferable skills, competencies and knowledge through field experience.
  • Ascertain and refine career objectives through reflection of professional experience.
  • Engage with non-profit, government, business, media or international organizations or agencies as a representative of the Humanitarian Action minor and Fairfield University.
  • Explore the ethical responsibilities associated with specific careers relating to Humanitarian Action.


Junior or Senior standing as a minor in the Humanitarian Action Program; have at least a 30. GPA; complete and return Internship Agreement to Julie Mughal in Canisius 200 Talk to your faculty advisor and start planning now for potential internships. Think about "trying out" a career, gaining work experience, marketable skills, potential mentors and a competitive edge. Look for potential matches between an internship with your career.

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