Information for County Departments


The primary purpose of the Student Internship Program is to attract the best and brightest of today’s university students so they will become interested in the County of Riverside for full-time employment. Students are encouraged to apply for internship positions which are related to their areas of study in school, and are in the fields where they would work if employed as regular County employees.   

Below is a summary of the the program guidelines. Please see the Student Internship Guidelines for complete program details.

Student Intern Positions

The County offers a mixture of paid and unpaid internships depending on the position and budgetary constraints of each sponsoring department. All appointments are part-time hourly, and work in an at-will status at the discretion of the appointing authority. Student Interns only receive benefits offered to TAP employees as outlined in the TAP Handbook.

Student Interns may not be substituted for candidates who have qualified for a County position through examination and are awaiting appointment from an employment list.


To participate in the Student Internship Program, students and recent graduates must meet the eligibility criteria. Students and recent graduates failing to meet the criteria become ineligible and must be removed from the program.  Any exceptions to the eligibility criteria must be approved by the Educational Support Program. All participating students will be required to provide proof of eligibility by submitting current transcripts upon completion of each term. Students can email their transcripts to

 Student Intern Qualifications:

1.  Unpaid Student Interns must be high school students or currently enrolled as part-time or full-time students at an accredited college or training program. Paid Student Interns must be high school students or recently graduated (within 3 months) or currently enrolled in a Bachelor's, Master's, or Doctoral program at an accredited college or university in a program relevant to the specific internship. Some positions may require current enrollment in an accredited graduate school program. Recent undergraduate or graduate students are eligible to intern for up to one year from their graduation date.  Recent undergraduate or graduate students must be removed from the program once their one-year graduation anniversary comes to pass regardless of when they began the internship.  


2.  Students must have and maintain a 2.5 minimum GPA to be eligible to be employed as a Student Intern.  Higher GPAs may be required by the hiring department.


3.  Students must be legal permanent residents, U.S. Citizens, or Green Card Holders (permit to work). International students are eligible as long as the department understands that the County does not sponsor international candidates for permanent employment and if an exception has been approved by the Human Resources Director in advance.

4.  In addition to the minimum qualifications above, students must meet additional required and desired qualifications depending on the nature of the internship assignment and needs of the assignment department.


Exceptions to the above student status requirements, and/or qualification requirements must be reviewed and approved by the Educational Support Program in advance.


The County’s primary interest is to ensure that the student’s education is a coequal priority. Work performed in the student’s internship should not negatively impact the student’s academic progress and academic qualifications by the assigned work hours. Student Interns may work a maximum of 20 hours per week during “regular academic sessions” (see definitions). Student Interns may work up to a maximum of 40 hours per week during school holidays if work is available and the Department approves the temporary work schedule.

Recent graduates may work up to a maximum of 40 hours per week.

Supervision and Program Monitoring

Departments are to provide adequate supervision at all times.  In addition, program monitoring can be accomplished with regular evaluations of the student’s performance and progress towards the goals of the internship. Assessment is an ongoing process and an essential part of supervision. It is helpful for supervisors to reflect on "how is the intern doing?" while observing day-to-day work. This not only provides a sense of progress the intern is making, but provides specific incidents for discussion. Depending upon the nature of the incident and its importance to the intern's overall development, these discussions may take place during the regular meetings between the supervisor and the intern. They may also be used to document growth and/or areas for continued improvement in the final evaluation conference.

Supervisors are encouraged to download the “Supervisor/Mentor Guidefor detailed information on how to supervise and evaluate student interns. 

Recruitment and Selection

The following procedures are to be used by departments for the recruitment and selection of Interns. Departments may participate in outreach events and/or refer a particular candidate(s) to the Educational Support Program for verification that they meet the internship qualifications, or they may request that the Educational Support Program advertise, recruit, and provide initial screening for all applicants.

A.      Departments Referring a Particular Candidate(s):

1.   If the department has already identified the candidate(s) they would like to hire, they are responsible for submitting the resume(s) of the selected candidate(s) along with a signed Internship Job Order Form to the Educational Support Program for processing. Forms can be emailed to

2.   ESP will then contact the candidate(s) for any required documentation (i.e., resume, unofficial transcripts, enrollment verification, diploma, etc.) to verify eligibility.

3.   Once the documents have been received and eligibility has been established, ESP will contact the candidate(s) to begin the on-boarding procedures (described below). 

B.      Departments Requesting an Internship Recruitment:

1.   To request an intern recruitment, complete and forward a signed Internship Job Order Form to

2.   ESP will review the form and conduct an intern position evaluation with the department for additional information.

3.  ESP will market the position utilizing advertising methods, including college electronic job boards and the County of Riverside Human Resources job announcement webpages.  In addition, an email marketing campaign will be distributed to ESP’s established university program contacts.  Postings are generally open for two weeks to allow students time to apply.

4.   Once the posting has closed, ESP will review the resumes and identify top candidates depending on how many students the department would like to interview.  The resume review process can take 3-5 business days.

5.   Resumes will then be forwarded to the hiring department to schedule interviews and make a selection. If requested by the hiring department, ESP will interview the candidates and make a selection.

6.   ESP will contact the selected candidate(s) for any required documentation (i.e., resume, unofficial transcripts, enrollment verification, diploma, etc.) to verify eligibility.


Once the documents have been received and eligibility has been established, ESP will contact the candidate(s) to begin the on-boarding procedures (described below).  

Onboarding Procedures

The candidate will be contacted by ESP to complete the following steps:

1.   Schedule a meeting to conduct a Live Scan background check (fingerprinting) and complete hiring paperwork. Live Scan results from the Department of Justice and FBI are typically received in 48 hours but occasional delays can take up to 30 days.   

2.   Upon clearance of the background check, the candidate will be given instructions on how to schedule a physical examination with the Occupational Health Office.  The physical requirement can be waived for unpaid interns in a strictly clerical/administrative internship. Clearance for the physical exam can take anywhere from 1 day to 1-2 weeks depending on the student’s availability. 

3.   Upon clearance from the background check and physical exam (if required), ESP will contact the department and student to determine a start date.

Note: All offers of employment for a student internship are contingent upon the results of the background check, which will include, at a minimum, a criminal records check through the California Department of Justice and the FBI.  In addition, where required, the offer is contingent upon a satisfactory drug and alcohol screening test and physical examination to determine physical ability to perform the duties of the position offered.  The background check and physical exam must be completed prior to employment commencing.  Applicants who fail the drug test component of the physical examination, where required, will be ineligible for employment with the County of Riverside for one year, in accordance with Board Policy.  

This is a summary of the the program guidelines. Please see the Student Internship Guidelines for complete program details.