Student Practicum Policy

The purpose of the practicum/internship experience is to provide students with an opportunity to apply the concepts, strategies, and tools acquired through the course of their study.  All MPH, MSPH, MHA and DrPH students are required to complete a practice experience at a site relevant to their discipline.  The practicum is a field experience which bridges professional academic preparation and advanced public health practice.  Advanced knowledge and skills, based on the competencies and learned in the relevant degree-specific program courses, are applied in an agency setting under the direction and guidance of an experienced supervisor/preceptor.  If a student is employed in a health setting, the practicum must be beyond or something other than regular work duties, allowing for the application of advanced knowledge and skills acquired in the academic program.  The practicum for DrPH students must incorporate higher level skills compared to the MPH internship experiences.  These higher level skills are expected to reinforce the competencies attained in pursuing the DrPH degree.

Practicum arrangements are ultimately the responsibility of the student and subject to departmental approval.  On occasion, the host site Preceptor will require an agreement with the School.

Procedures:

    1. If a practicum agreement with the school is required, the practicum host site will inform the SPH practicum coordinator.  The practicum coordinator will introduce the host site contact to the SPH Office of Business Affairs to negotiate the agreement.

    2. A template of the SPH practicum agreement will be used unless the host site or agency has other specific agreement requirements.

    3. The SPH Business Office will perform the initial draft of the agreement and send it to the TAMHSC Contract Office for review.

    4. Once both parties agree to the terms of the agreement, a final version of the agreement will be routed through the SPH Practicum Coordinator.  A routing cover sheet will be attached to the agreement for sign-off to acknowledge the review.

    5. The final agreement will be signed by the TAMHSC V.P. for Academic Affairs on behalf of the school.