Responsibilities/Expectations of Mentors

How to Create a UMaine Cooperative Extension Internship Experience

  1. Identify a project and/or need of your department/program/county that would work well for an Intern.
  2. Identify a person within your department/program/county who would be willing to be a Mentor and you feel would be up for the task.
  3. Identify funding for the Internship (department/program/county funding may be needed).
  4. Fill out the Form for Internship Template. (See Sample Internship Design Forms.)
  5. When an emailed copy of the form is sent to you, be sure to save it. You will need a copy of it later. 
  6. Wait for approval from your supervisor and one of the Internship Coordinators. Internship Coordinator: Lisa Phelps will work with you and your supervisor to adapt your internship project if it is not approved.
  7. Fill out the “Request to be Added to Extension’s Career Link Page” Google Form.
  8. Gather and/or develop interview questions for the potential interns. (Feel free to adapt or use the sample questions.)
  9. Interview your potential interns. See Internship Mentor Interview Protocols for information about setting up and conducting interviews.
  10. Hire your Intern.
  11. Fill out and submit the necessary paperwork, so your Intern becomes a student employee (for help with this process, reach out to Intern Coordinator Caitlin Ramsay at
  12. If your Intern is seeking academic credit, please fill out a Learning Contract and/or any additional documentation needed for the Intern’s Internship Class. (Feel free to use the Sample Internship Learning Contract (Word)). Both the Intern FAQ and the Mentor FAQ have more information regarding this. (This should be done with the Intern).
  13. Set up a work and check-in plan for your Intern. (This should be done with the Intern).
  14. Identify any additional training(s) your Intern may need for your Internship project and/or for working at your location. (These training(s) will need to be included in the Onboarding Process for your Intern). (See the Intern Orientation page for a list of required Student Worker Trainings)
  15. Create an onboarding plan for your Intern. (This may be the same one you already use for new staff and/or volunteers.) (See the Intern Orientation page for more information)
  16. If your Intern is seeking academic credit, please create an evaluation form for the Intern (Non-Academic-Credit-Seeking Interns may still want a formal evaluation done, in order to give them real-life experience with the process. Please discuss this during the onboarding process to see what your Intern might prefer.) (Feel free to adapt or use the sample questions (Word).)
  17. Gather and/or develop Exit Interview Questions to be used at the completion of the Internship. An Exit Interview is required for both Academic-Credit-Seeking and Non-Academic-Credit-Seeking Interns. (Feel free to adapt or use the Sample Internship Wrap Up/Exit Interview Questions.)
  18. Have a successful Internship Experience.
  19. At the completion of the Internship, set aside time to go over: Learning Contract and/or any other materials needed for academic credit (if applicable); Formal Evaluation (if applicable), and Exit Interview. Please provide copies of necessary documentation to required individuals. If Intern is seeking academic credit, please keep documentation on file until the credit is awarded (if student qualifies). Copies of documentation may need to be provided to Internship Coordinators and/or The Internship Committee for reporting purposes. 
  20. Please fill out the Mentor’s Post-Cooperative Extension Internship Experience Survey. The survey will help us to create a better internship experience and to help generate promotional material.
  21. Mentors may be asked to report on the overall success and effectiveness of their internship project to The Internship Committee and/or The Internship Leadership Team.

Mentor Expectations

Visit Mentor Expectations for information about expectations for internship creation, management and support, goal setting, skill development, feedback, and more.