SEP for Interns
Welcome to the Summer Enrichment Program.
Below, you will find all of the information you will need to know about the Institute for Diversity's Summer Enrichment Program. Information on the Upcoming Schedule, how to register and what to expect, when you are at your host site.
If you have a question that isn't answered here, please skip to the bottom of the page for contact information for our Education Specialist.
Registration for the 2014 Season is OPEN.
To be eligible for the Summer Enrichment Program, you must:
- Be a U.S. Citizen (Work-Study Visas or Permanent Residents are not eligible for this program.)
- Be currently enrolled or recently graduated from a U.S. graduate school in a Masters in Health Administration program or a comparable degree. (We currently cannot place undergraduates.)
- Maintain a 3.0 GPA
Applying for the program.
Application is a very simple process. It can be broken down into these seven (7) simple steps.
1.) Visit our Online Database by clicking here. (Bookmark this page for later reference.)
2.) In the field, "Enter your Organization:" enter IFDSEP.
3.) Enter your contact information into the blank applicant profile. (Note: Do not fill out the grey "Host Site Section". Do skip down and complete the blue "Student Section".) Do not skip any fields. You must fill out the profile completely to register. (The registry will not save your progress. If you close the window or leave before you are done, your work will be lost.)
4.) Once you complete the profile, you will receive a confirmation email with your Profile Id. Save that. You will need that info to login and update your profile or upload documentation to your "App Packet" page.
5.) Assemble your Application Package Documents. They include:
- Your Letter of Introduction
- A Current Academic Resume
- Current College Transcripts (You may upload an unofficial copy from your college website.)
- Proof of US citizenship (i.e.. Birth Certificate, US passport or US Passport Card only. Driver's license, social security card or green card will not suffice. )
- Two (2) Letters of Recommendation (preferably from a Dean of current graduate program or current professor)
- One current, professional digital photograph of yourself uploaded to your profile page.
Note: Please spell-check all of your documentation before upload. You will not be seriously considered for placement, if your documents contain errors.
6.) Login to your profile in the SEP Registry and upload these documents to your "App Packet" page. Note: Students who do not complete the profile and upload all documents will not be eligible for placement at a host site.
7.) Download and read the SEP Intern Manual. The manual is full of helpful information. It will give you a thorough understanding of the SEP process and what you can expect throughout the entire program. Note: Do not ignore this step. The manual is a critical part of your preparation for the program.
Once you've uploaded all documents, you are now registered for the SEP program.
2014 SEP Schedule
For the 2014 season, we will be matching students based upon when you registered for the program. Students who complete their application profile by Jan. 10, 2014 will be placed in the first cohort. These students will be matched with host sites first.
Students who complete their applications by Feb. 14, 2014 will be placed in the second cohort. These students will be matched with late registering host sites.
If at all possible, you will want to be in the first cohort.
|PLACEMENT||FIRST COHORT (Registered students get primary placement.)|
|Oct. 01, 2013||Registration for 2014 SEP opens.|
|Jan. 10, 2014||First cohort registration closes.|
|Jan. 10, 2014||(12pm CST) First cohort orientation.|
|Jan. 13 - 24, 2014||First cohort phone interviews with Institute staff.|
|Jan. 27, 2014||First cohort matching with Host Sites begins.|
|PLACEMENT||SECOND COHORT (Registered students get secondary placement.)|
|Feb. 14, 2014||Second cohort registration closes.|
|Feb. 14, 2013||(12pm CST) Second cohort orientation.|
|Feb. 17 - 28, 2014||Second cohort phone interviews with Institute staff.|
|March 3, 2013||Matching with Host Sites begins.|
|April 30, 2014||Matching for Host Sites ends (approximately).|
|June 2, 2014||SEP 10 week internships begin.|
|Aug. 8, 2014||SEP internships end / graduation webinar.|
|August, 2014||Exit interviews & resolution of the 2014 SEP.|
|Oct. 01, 2014||Registration for 2015 SEP opens.|
*Due to variable scheduling in host sites and academic universities, dates for the beginning and end of internships may vary slightly.
Frequently Asked Questions
This section is intended to answer some of the questions that former Summer Enrichment Program (SEP) interns have had about the program. Please take a moment to read this, before registering for the program. If you don't find the answer to your question, you can skip to the bottom and find contact information for our Education Specialist.
You may use these links to skip ahead to one of our FAQs.
The SEP Internship
The Institute's Education Team will vet your profile to make sure:
a.) you are a US citizen.
b.) Your cumulative GPA is 3.0 or higher and that your transcripts are accurate
c.) Your profile is complete and that all of your documents are error-free and ready for consideration.
Once your profile has been vetted, a representative from the Institute will contact you to set up a telephone interview with our Education Specialist. That interview will better allow the Education Specialist to recommend you to the hospital that is the best fit for your personality and goals. This interview will last approximately 30 minutes.
When the matching process begins, the Education Specialist will promote you to the best possible host site for your skillset and location. (Note: Not all interns will be matched initially.)
The hospital representative (or preceptor) will then login to the SEP database and examine your completed profile. If the preceptor wants to consider you for placement, they will contact you for a second phone interview. If that interview goes well, then the hospital may offer you a summer internship.
You may take 24 hours to discuss the internship with your family, before you decide to accept or reject the internship. (If you already know your answer, you can accept or decline the internship, immediately.)
Whether you accept or not, it is very important that you contact Education Specialist, Chris Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org to update him on your progress. If you accept the internship, you will then need to begin planning your travel and housing.
Travel and Housing?
In most cases, acceptance of an SEP internship means moving to another town or city for the summer. It is very rare that you will be placed for an internship close to your current school or residence.
You will know, in advance, where the internship is located, before you interview for it with the host site. That will give you time to poll your resources and see if a move for the summer is workable for you.
Note: If you are absolutely unable to move for the summer, you will significantly decrease your chances for placement. Please keep that in mind, before you apply for the SEP.
In most cases, the SEP does not reimburse for travel or for housing. You will be expected to cover those costs for yourself.
You will also be expected to locate your own housing near the host site. Your preceptor and the Education Specialist will not do that for you. Please keep housing in mind, when you are considering accepting a summer internship.
Past students have successfully located housing by using some of these strategies:
Host Site: Occasionally, the host sites, themselves will have housing available, in either a dormitory or guest housing. When you interview with your host site, be sure to ask if any housing is available. If not, they might still be able to suggest other options for you, near the host site.
Friends & Family: Staying in the home of guest room of a local friend or family member. (Often, this is the most cost effective option.) You might ask for local contacts through your church or social groups, as well.
Hostel: Often found in larger cities, hostels are affordable, communal living arrangements for visitors and temporary lodgers. You can find out more information about hostels and look for one near your host site, by visiting this site.
Local College Dorms: During the summer months, colleges often rent out dorm rooms to students who are in town for summer internships. Do a Google search for colleges near your host site and contact their Housing Office to explore your possibilities. This is often a cheaper alternative to sub-letting an apt for the summer.
The Local Newspaper: Find out what the local newspaper is called and search the "For Rent" section in the back of the paper. You can do this same search online from your home.
Craigslist: Visit www.craigslist.com and locate the city closest to your host site, go to the "Sublets/ Temporary Housing" page of your town and see if there are any sublets available.
The Education Specialist can only advise you about selecting housing for yourself. He will not actually research or locate housing for you. Please be pro-active about this and use your available resources to secure your summer housing. No one else can do it for you.
The Letter of Introduction is an important tool that will assist the Institute in identifying the best experience for you. It will also help potential employers understand more about your skills and qualifications. This is your opportunity to sell yourself and explain why you’re a good match for the SEP program and our host sites.
The Letter of Introduction should be no longer than one page (single spaced) and it should focus on your interest and passion for becoming a leader in healthcare, your professional skills and qualifications, as well as short term and long-term career goals. Be thoughtful about what you want the reader to learn about you. You do not have to focus on information that is already included on your resume. Keep in mind that many of the reviewers reading your Letter of Introduction are CEO, COO and members of the senior management team who may have limited time to review your application.
Note: Be sure to use a professional letter layout complete with your contact information and a letter header. You may address it to "To Whom It May Concern". Be sure to spell-check the letter before you upload it.
Do you want my current transcripts or will undergraduate transcripts suffice?
We would prefer a copy of your most recent transcripts for graduate school. We want to see what you're currently pursuing educationally and how well that is going. We will accept a scanned copy of your Unofficial Transcripts from your college website.
In a pinch, if your graduate transcripts are not available, you make submit your recent undergraduate transcripts. Just be sure to mention that in your Letter of Introduction as a note.
In most cases, you can notify your Office of Admissions, and have them email a copy of the transcripts to you, which can then be uploaded to your profile.
How do I get my Letter of Recommendation from my college professor?
In some cases, your professor may be willing to give you a copy of the Letter of Recommendation, directly. This is the preferred method. You can scan a copy of them (retain a copy for your own records) and upload it to your profile.
In some cases, a professor would prefer not to give a copy of the Letter of Recommendation to you. In that case, they may send them to the Institute's Education Specialist, via the following methods:
Via email to email@example.com
Via postal mail to:
Mr. Chris O. Biddle
The Institute for Diversity in Health Management
155 N. Wacker Ave. Ste.400
Chicago, IL 60640
Mr. Biddle will scan a copy of your Letters of Recommendation and email a copy to you, to upload to your profile. Your professors should know that at that point, the Letters of Recommendation will be visible to you too.
Can I scan a copy of my Drivers License as my proof of US Citizenship?
No, the only forms of identification that we accept are scanned copies of your US passport, passport card or birth certificate.
Here is an article about obtaining a copy of your birth certificate.
The SEP internship
How long does the internship last?
Approximately 10 weeks. Sometimes more, sometimes less. That's dependent entirely upon when you are matched up with your hospital and when you have to return to school. Traditionally, internships begin in June and conclude in August.
The on-site training/internship is a critical part of the SEP experience. All participants and host sites are required to commit to a minimum of 10 weeks to ensure that interns have a sufficient time to complete a significant project and that mentors have the opportunity to develop a formal relationship with each student. Start and end dates are negotiated between the student and the host site or mentor. (The host site may opt to abbreviate your internship, at their discretion.)
Because we are adding host sites to the roster each year (and losing some of them for timing or budgetary reasons), we can't give you a definitive list of which sites are participating, this year.
We prefer that you allow the host sites to make contact with you, instead. By superseding that process, you could potentially be submitting yourself for internships that you are not qualified for, thereby alienating the host site preceptor.
Please wait for the host sites to contact you. If you have questions about the process or worries that you are not being considered, contact the Education Specialist, Chris Biddle to ask him for feedback.
Every SEP intern is expected to complete a Special Project at their host site, before the internship is complete. In most cases, the host site will have a project in mind for you, when you get there. You may also suggest alternative or additional projects, if you have a skill set suited for an additional or alternative project.
The Special Project is intended to have a lasting effect on the host site, after you leave. This is also a good opportunity for you to demonstrate to your host site that you are professional and have a good work ethic. In short, that you would make an excellent full-time employee.
For examples of other recent Special Projects, see your Student Manual.
The selection process begins in February and will last until all available positions are filled. The Education Specialist will send you periodic updates, letting you know how many positions are still available and offering helpful suggestions for getting placed. When the last position is filled, he will notify all remaining candidates and close the placement process of the SEP.
If you are not immediately placed or placed for an internship within the first 3 - 4 weeks, do not be discouraged. Placement for SEP students will go as late as June or July. Sometimes placement is a lengthy process. Please be patient.
strong>Is this a paid internship?
Yes. This is a paid internship. Each individual host site will make arrangements for their individual pay schedule. Traditionally, the internships are $500 a week, or $12.50 an hour.
Yes. That is possible.
In some cases, host sites were so impressed with their SEP intern, that permanent, full-time employment was offered before the internship was complete. In some cases, the host sites offered a position, dependent upon the student completing their graduate work and returning to the host site. Approximately, one quarter of SEP students are hired for full-time employment, each summer.
Note: We discourage SEP students from broaching the topic of permanent placements with their preceptor. This is a discussion that they should initiate with you. Be ready to have that conversation, but do not expect it or pursue it until they approach you. If it does not happen, please continue to serve the remainder of your internship with a good, professional attitude.
Each host site determines the number of internship positions available at their organization. Most choose between 1-2 positions per host site.
How many students will be applying for positions? How many positions are available?
Each summer, approximately 100 students enroll in the program. Those 100 students are pared down to 60 students, who are eventually placed in 1 of 40 possible internships. (We have to have more students than positions, because of the geographic limitations of students. Not everyone can move to accept an internship.)
The Summer Enrichment Program matching process is competitive. Applicants initially indicate a preference for a position at a particular site or geographic region. Host sites/ preceptors will then review the applications and contact those applicants with whom they would like to interview. Most organizations complete one round of phone interviews and/or on-site interviews before making a final offer.
In accordance with the mission of the Institute, all student programs and services require proof of US citizenship and are intended to benefit the U.S. hospital system. We do not currently offer any programming for non US citizens.
Students do not need to be enrolled in a health care management program but must demonstrate a commitment to becoming a leader in health care (ie. hospital administration, public health administration). Medical students and dual degree students who have an interest in exploring the field of hospital administration are also welcome. Other comparable programs include: MBA, MPH, MHA, MPA, or MSN.
SEP program elements are not well suited for students whose career goals are focused elsewhere, including, teaching, nursing, pharmacy, or other allied medical fields, etc.
No, you do not have to be a member of the American College of Healthcare Executives to participate in the Summer Enrichment Program. We do recommend that you consider joining the ACHE to participate in their programming and enjoy all of the benefits of membership in their organization. For more info about ACHE, please click here.
Note: ACHE offers their very own Diversity internship, which filters through the SEP (getting the same educational materials and experience). You can learn more about that internship, here.
Yes. Many of the past and current SEP students apply for either one or all of the Institute scholarships. Participating in SEP can only help to further demonstrate your commitment to advancing your skills and establishing yourself as a leader in healthcare.
Yes. Please note in your application packet that you have previously been a member of the SEP program, with details on when and where you participated.
Preceptors are your supervisors. However, one of the goals of the on-site enrichment experience to provide students with the opportunity to develop mentors that are practicing within the health care profession. SEP will provide tools and materials to help interns progress in their relationships with their preceptors so that SEP preceptors become SEP mentors.
Many students also take advantage of the opportunity to develop mentoring relationships with other leaders throughout the organization who may also become long-term mentors.
Some organizations have formal mentorship programs and others do not. Even for those organizations that do assign a formal mentor, interns may find that there are other leaders in the organization that they would like to develop a formal relationship with. Many of these informal leaders/mentors are identified at organizations meetings or through project work. Introduce yourself to your potential mentor. Explain that you are an intern and ask if it is okay to schedule a meeting sometime in the next 1-2 weeks to learn more about their area of the hospital and to meet members of their team. Depending on your comfort level you can also ask to attend one of their team meetings. The key is that once you ask for time you will need to make certain that you follow-up.
The Institute's SEP program is intended for first, second year or recently graduated graduate students. Click here for more information about health care internship opportunities for undergraduates with Health Career Connection (HCC).
Currently, we do not offer Spring, Winter or Fall internships. We focus entirely on Summer internships. We hope to expand the program and offer non-summer internships in the future. But they are currently not available.
The week before your internship ends, you will receive an SEP Evaluation form from the Education Specialist. You will be asked to fill it out, to give feedback about the host site and your experience. Your feedback is helpful for planning the next year's SEP.
You will also likely have an Exit Interview with your preceptor, before you leave your host site.
Once your internship is resolved, you will receive your Certificate of Completion in the mail. This document is intended to show that you did complete the SEP course for your summer and ended it in favorable standing with your host site.
You will also be required to take a short feedback survey to share your experiences with the SEP. We will not mail the Certificate of Completion until we receive your survey results.
If you have additional questions, please contact Membership & Education Specialist, Chris O. Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (312)-422-2658.
Updated: Oct. 01, 2013