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Work-Based Learning & Internships

Academy Requirements:

Students in the Arts & Entertainment Academy must complete the following Work-Based Learning Activities over their four years of high school, in order to receive their Academy cord at graduation: 

Internship:  Frequently Asked Questions

To complete their Academy requirements, all students must take a Capstone course, which requires both classroom learning and internship experience. We define internship as work-place experience, and it can be completed as a full-trimester Capstone project, a paid internship off campus, or participation in a series of on or off campus arts events. These options are explained to students by each Capstone course teacher.  Ongoing opportunities are also made available to students through school-wide announcements. Internships can be cumulative experiences over a larger span of time, rather than within the Capstone course alone. Examples for all types of activities are given in the FAQ below.

Students must complete a minimum of 60 internship hours to fulfill the Academy internship requirement. Students may also earn NAF Certification by completing two 60-hour or one 120-hour paid internships. Documentation of the internship hours must be turned in to the Academy Lead by the end of May in the Senior year.

What 'On-Campus' Activities Count As Internship Hours?

You may complete your internship hours on campus through a series of unpaid activities where you are under the direction of either your Capstone teacher or a professional in the Arts & Entertainment industry. These hours will be documented on the Internship Hours Timesheet.

Performing Arts Examples:

  • Completing a full-trimester Capstone project that is client-based or serves a public audience. Students work with the client on an ongoing basis through the project. 
  • Working in the Sound and Lighting booth under the direction of a contracted technician
  • Participating in school musicals, plays, or dance performances 
  • Participating as a crew member for school performances and events
  • Mentorship from an arts professional as preparation for a professional performance or showcase (i.e. Rancho Gala)

Visual Arts Examples:

  • Completing a full-trimester Capstone project that is client-based or serves a public audience. Students work with the client on an ongoing basis through the project. 
  • Shooting and editing video for school events
  • Working in the Sound and Lighting booth under the direction of a contracted technician
  • Doing layout design for a music design program under the direction of a teacher or graphic designer
  • Hanging artwork for school showcases
  • Creating visual marketing materials under the direction of an art or design teacher
  • Painting sets with an art teacher or designer 
  • Mentorship from an arts professional for the completion of an art portfolio

What 'Off-Campus' Activities Count as Internship Hours?

You may complete your internship hours through one or more off campus opportunities where you are under the direction of a business professional in the Arts & Entertainment industry. These may be paid or unpaid. You are responsible for collecting a time sheet from your supervisor, or requesting their signature on the Academy Internship Hours Timesheet

Performing Arts Examples:

  • Singing or performing with a professional company on one or more performances
  • Working as a tech for a production company
  • Assisting an instructor in a performing art studio

Visual Arts Examples:

  • Assisting a professional photographer or videographer in a studio or on a project location
  • Working with a graphic designer on graphic productions
  • Working as a Gallery Assistant for a local art gallery
  • Assisting an instructor in a visual art studio

Where Can I Find an Off Campus Internship?

We have several off-campus partners who work with our Rancho students to provide internship hours, both paid and unpaid. Most internships start as unpaid, and then students may apply for paid positions.

The following local organizations have ongoing opportunities for Arts & Entertainment Academy Students:

  • RC Makes
  • Studio Channel Islands (Art Gallery / Studio)
  • Rock City Studios (Music Production)
  • Pleasant Valley Parks and Recreation

Students may also find their own internship opportunity. Please contact your Academy Lead to verify that this activity will count as an internship within the Arts Industry sector.

How Do I Keep Track of My Internship Hours?

Completing and keeping track of internship hours is the responsibility of the student, as part of the Academy program in the Junior and Senior Year.

For one-time events and short-term projects, students must keep track on an Internship Hours Timesheet. which is available from your Academy teacher, or your Academy Lead. Most job-sites that offer part-time paid internships will use a timecard for repeated events. Students are responsible for receiving documentation from the internship supervisor, and turning these in to the Academy Lead.