Experiential learning is a key component of St. Edward’s undergraduate General Education. This type of learning engages students outside of the classroom to broaden and deepen their awareness of societal problems and participate in community-based activities that address these issues.

Types of Experiential Learning

  • Introductory Experiential Learning exposes students to foundational experiential learning opportunities beyond the classroom.
  • Advanced Experiential Learning provides more robust and meaningful experiential learning opportunities with additional engagement required of the student in both time and effort.

Through the Experiential Learning for Social Justice (EL4SJ) mission marker course in the General Education requirement, all undergraduate students will complete at least one introductory experiential learning opportunity. Students may have additional curricular and co-curricular introductory experiential learning opportunities during their time at St. Edward’s.

As articulated in Strategic Plan 2027, 100% of undergraduate students will complete at least one
advanced experiential learning opportunity before graduation. To support this goal over five years, constructing definitions of experiential learning areas and establishing clear criteria for advanced experiential learning across the university is key to overall success.

As a result, St. Edward's has developed five definitions for advanced experiential learning:

1. Internships and Field Experience

2. Research and Creative Works with Faculty

3. Immersive Domestic and International Travel Experiences

4. Service-Learning and Volunteering

5. Student Employment/Leadership On and Off Campus

Advanced Experiential Learning Criteria

To achieve rigor through time and effort, an Advanced Experiential Learning opportunity must meet all of the following criteria:

1. Quantitative: 60 clock hours within a semester. Equal to 1 credit or 4 hrs/week for 16 weeks.

2. Intentional: The experience should be purposeful, planned in advance with explicit goals and intended outcomes.

3. Beneficial: Support students’ interests, career readiness, and aspirations.

4. Supervised: The experience should be supervised, including ongoing faculty, staff, supervisor and/or community involvement in all phases.

Optional Enhancements

Advanced Experiential Learning opportunities can be enhanced or further enriched by meeting one or more additional criteria:

  • Offer credit hours or financial payment.
  • Provide opportunities for reflection.
  • Occur in or simulate a "real-world" context as much as possible.
  • Present a meaningful challenge to the student.
  • Incorporate active learning, with the student an active participant in all stages of the experience from planning to evaluation.
  • Enriched, with access to materials, resources, and support systems.
  • Opportunity to learn, with adequate time and quality of opportunities.
  • Involve the application of concepts/knowledge learned in the student's regular course work.

Advanced Experiential Learning Programs

Austin Impact Internship Program

The Austin Impact Internship Program connects St. Edward's University students to internships with Austin-area employers as part of the Austin Impact initiative in the Strategic Plan 2027. The goal of this program is to offer students the opportunity to participate in advanced experiential learning and strengthen the community through these local partnerships.

Program Benefits

Participating in this program will allow students to:

  • fulfill your Advanced Experiential Learning degree requirement
  • gain valuable life skills and experiences to add to your resumé
  • exercise career readiness competencies
  • support the Austin area

Application Process

Students must apply on Handshake to be considered for the program. A formal hiring process will follow. The Career and Professional Development office will host resumé and interview workshops prior to final interviews.

Important dates:

  • February 13, 2023 — Resumé workshop
  • February 15, 2023 — Resumé workshop
  • March 7, 2023 — Interviewing workshop
  • March 8, 2023 — Interviewing workshop
  • March 24, 2023 — Final interview I
  • March 31, 2023 — Final interview II

Summer 2023 Internships

Internships are available in the following industries:

  • Hospitality
  • Event planning
  • Public Program Support
  • Horticulture
  • Broadcast News
  • Government
  • Business Management
  • Healthcare

Specific employers and positions will be shared with applicant

Blue & Gold Scholars Program

Become a Blue & Gold Scholar

The Blue & Gold Scholar program is dedicated to recognizing St. Edward's University undergraduate student participation in advanced experiential learning opportunities. Fill out the designated survey below and become a Blue & Gold Scholar!*

Undergraduate students graduating in Spring 2023: take this survey
All other undergraduate students: take this survey

*All submissions will be reviewed by a committee of advanced experiential learning supervisors. Students will be recognized as a Blue & Gold Scholar upon approval of their submission(s). 

Types of Scholars

  • Blue Scholars have completed 1 advanced experiential learning opportunity
  • Gold Scholars have completed 2 advanced experiential learning opportunities 
  • Blue and Gold Scholars have completed 3 or more advanced experiential learning opportunities

Requirements and FAQs

How many advanced experiential learning opportunities can I submit? There is no limit — please submit as many opportunities as you have participated in.

Do the advanced experiential learning opportunities need to be completed in the past or can I submit experiences I’m currently completing? Both! You can submit experiences completed in the past or current opportunities. 

Can advanced experiential learning opportunities before 2018 be submitted? No, all submissions must be from January 2018 moving forward. 

Is there a deadline for submitting my survey? All submissions must be sent in by March 31 for students graduating in Spring 2023.

When will I get my cord? Students graduating in Spring 2023 will receive their cord prior to graduation. The Career & Professional Development office will send out information when the cords are available for pick up. 

How much do the cords cost? The cords are FREE!

If you completed an advanced experiential learning opportunity as a result of taking an academic course, there is no further action required to become a Scholar.

Scholar Recognition

Scholars will receive a gold cord to wear at graduation symbolizing their hard work and achievements.