Help develop the next generation of geoscientists
while gaining visibility for your organization.

What is an externship?

An unpaid career exploration opportunity for undergraduate students. Externs spend a day shadowing and learning at a host organization during an academic break. Hosts connect with Jackson School students and share knowledge, while students get an inside look at potential careers without the time commitment of an internship or job.

Forbes article: Externships: What They Are And Why They’re Important

Locations and dates

Externships are arranged in Houston, Dallas, San Antonio and Austin during academic breaks. Students are responsible for their own transportation and lodging. Most students will choose externships in their hometown, resulting in minimal cost to the student. Hosts choose the date and time of the externship.

Winter Break: January 11-14, 2016

Spring Break: March 14-18, 2016

Value to the host

Hosting an externship is a low-commitment (time and cost) opportunity with big benefits:

  • Gain visibility for your company and build your brand at the Jackson School
  • Educate students on the steps to take now in order to be competitive candidates in the future
  • Connect to prospective future interns, employees, and colleagues
  • Share your career path and the lessons you’ve learned along the way

Suggested activities

As a host, you can create an itinerary that fits your organization. Students can spend the day with one person, or visit with a number of employees or teams. Suggested activities for student externs include:

  • Tour of workplace
  • Shadow typical work activities
  • Attend meetings
  • Demonstration of software or other important tools/programs
  • Company presentation
  • Panel of recent hires or employees
  • Q&A with employees
  • Lunch with alumni and/or employees from various departments

Host expectations

  • Complete the Host Interest Form
  • Communicate with the Geosciences Career Center (GCC) to provide logistical information in advance of the externship
  • Coordinate schedule for student extern(s)
  • If possible, provide lunch for extern(s)
  • Submit an evaluation form after the externship

Student expectations

  • Attend an orientation session hosted by the GCC
  • Submit questions for the host in advance of the externship
  • Exhibit professionalism by arriving on time, dressing appropriately, etc.
  • Arrange transportation to and from the host site
  • Complete an evaluation form after the externship

Student Impact

By participating in an externship, students have the chance to:

  • Experience real life applications of their coursework
  • Begin building a professional network
  • Observe a typical work environment in their field of interest
  • Hear career advice directly from professionals

Student comments from a spring break externship at Peregrine Petroleum:

“Before this externship the only geologists I had ever met were professors, so it was nice to see others applying their degrees outside of academia.”

“Now I have a better understanding of what geologists do in this industry and what employers look for when hiring someone.”

Sign-up to be a host!

We are currently recruiting hosts for both winter and spring break externships (2016).

To get started, please fill out the Host Interest form.

Additional Information



Chelsea Ochoa

Career Services Program Coordinator

Jackson School of Geosciences | 512-232-0893