The purpose of the industry internship is to expand classroom learning to include “hands-on” experience in health IT, in the context of a particular industry sector (this may include providers, payers, or even research organizations such as a CRO or a clinical studies research center). Students with backgrounds in IT or IS should work with an industry mentor with clinical experience. Similarly, students with a clinical background should work with a mentor with expertise in IT or IS. A CHIP faculty member will supervise the internship and ensure a proper pairing with an appropriate industry mentor.

The internship typically lasts four months but may overlap between two semesters and therefore may cover a longer period of time (six/seven months).

How to Apply

Select an appropriate mentor and project with the help of your CHIP adviser. Write a brief proposal (1-2 pages) describing the scope of the work. The proposal must be approved by the faculty member (academic adviser) leading the internship, and a copy should be shared with the CHIP Program Coordinator.

Print and complete the Internship Plan and submit to the Program Coordinator along with the brief proposal.

What is Expected?

The internship should engage the student in both theoretical and practical work which involves investigating a clinical informatics challenge and developing solutions to address the challenges. Students are expected to meet with the industry mentor and their faculty mentor three times during the internship:

1. The first meeting should have all three involved parties in attendance: the industry mentor, the faculty mentor, and the student. At this first meeting the Internship Plan (with the attached “brief proposal”) should be discussed/filled out and the parameters of the project stated clearly.

2. The second meeting is a “mid-semester review” meeting in which the industry mentor will review the student’s progress, decide whether they are progressing towards stated goals, and offer feedback to the student. This is a good chance to complete any revisions to the project goals, if appropriate. The faculty mentor will also have a mid-semester review with the student, but this does not have to be the same meeting as the mid-semester review with the industry mentor; in fact, typically they happen as separate events.

3. The third “meeting” will be for the Internship Presentation where the student will present to the faculty mentor, industry mentor, as well as other interested attendees. The faculty and industry mentors will have a chance to ask final questions and offer feedback following the presentation.

Deliverables: a presentation to be held on a set date agreed upon with the lead faculty and industry mentor (the third meeting); and a poster summarizing the key problems addressed, data collection methods, and major findings.


The final grade for the internship will be assigned by the lead faculty.


If you have questions or need more information regarding applying for an industry internship, please contact us at chipinfo@unc.edu.

Internship Plan