The Albany Semester Program (ASP) places undergraduate students for a semester or summer in New York State agencies and State government-related organizations. Students work full-time in a responsible position under the careful guidance of an on-site supervisor provided by the agency. Students also complete an academic component consisting of a seminar, assigned readings and a research paper. The ASP provides general supervision to the interns and resource persons to enrich the interns' overall experience.
The Albany Semester Program is administered by the Capital District Center (CDC) of SUNY's Empire State College (ESC) for a consortium of SUNY institutions, including the Colleges at Brockport, Buffalo, Cortland, Fredonia, Geneseo, Oneonta, Oswego, Plattsburgh, and the Cornell University Colleges of Agriculture/Life Sciences and Human Ecology. Since the Program's inception in 1978, over 650 students have served as Albany Semester Program interns. An advisory board consisting of one member from each of the campuses oversees the Program. ESC/CDC promotes the Program, solicits placements, screens applications, assigns interns to placements, provides qualified persons to direct an academic component and supplies general assistance to the interns and campus sponsors.
Most ASP interns receive the equivalent of a full semester's credit (4-8 credit hours in the summer) for the combination of placement duties and the seminar provided by ESC/CDC. Normally, each student in the Program earns 8-12 credits (2-6 credits in the summer) for the internship from his/her campus through intern, field experience, independent study units or some combination thereof under the supervision of one or more faculty sponsors and 4 credits for the seminar. During the fall and spring components, full-time SUNY students can cross-register for the seminar rather than pay additional tuition. Summer participants must pay appropriate tuition charges to both Empire Sate and their campus. For students, the Albany Semester Program provides an invaluable opportunity to apply knowledge, observe and interpret State government activities, test potential career choices, develop or improve interpersonal abilities, utilize writing and communication skills, perfect analytical capabilities as well as to experience important personal growth. ASP encourages campuses to recruit highly motivated, serious students with an interest in State government and a desire to learn independently. A student coming to ASP is not likely to be disappointed. Many participants have concluded that the semester in Albany was the best semester of their undergraduate experience. In some cases, the ASP internship has led to jobs after graduation.