Internship Academy

The Center for Homicide Research offers one of the finest internship programs in the United States. Several internship and service-learning opportunities are available. Qualifying students come from undergraduate, graduate and law schools.  This is a multi-disciplinary opportunity, though majors typically include sociology, criminology, psychology, social psychology, forensic psychology, GIS (geographic information systems), statistics, or law. All internships are unpaid, however the we offer an interactive learning environment with real-world learning.

Research is underway to identify, categorize and document homicide in the United States.  Research is done primarily using Internet-based databases and archives, but additional research is often conducted at locations around the Country.  Homicide incident records are also being retrieved from law enforcement and court systems, both online and in-person. Interns conduct research on identified homicide cases to gather additional information, and conduct research to identify patterns and trends.

Because of the complexity of the research data, researchers and interns must have an attention for detail.  A working knowledge of sociological research is helpful, though not required.

Interns must also have an inquisitive spirit. Many cases are not easily identified from the available sources and must be researched in great detail. Because these cases are often difficult to identify, multiple research strategies are encouraged under the supervision of the principal researcher.

The first day involves a three-hour orientation session.  Interns will be acclimated to the Center’s goals and objectives, given an overview of the project, and oriented to various homicide databases.  Interns and researchers work closely with the principal researcher, so there are ample opportunities for questions and training is continuous.

The Center also encourages interns to attend conferences and seminars to broaden their understanding of sociology and research.  Under some circumstances and with prior approval, the Center pays for a student intern’s conference attendance, especially if they present their completed research.

The Center is flexible in developing a schedule for all student interns, though most hours are Monday through Friday, 9-5.

Interns and researchers must have the ability to work with diverse cultures, communities and lifestyles. This includes people of color, people with mental illnesses, and the homeless to name a few. An understanding of the LGBT community is helpful, but is not required. Students must also be willing to confront stigmatized topics of death, murder, and sex. Homicide routinely involves diverse forms of sexual behavior and this topic is frequently discussed, though in a clinical manner.

Applicants may also qualify for grant funding through their university or college. Check with financial aid offices or academic advisers for possible funding for community internships. Internships, as well, may qualify as service-learning commitments. Check with your university or college’s service-learning office.

A background check is required and is conducted by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension. This is not part of the initial application process. Qualified applicants will be interviewed and must agree to submit to, and pass, a criminal background check with no felony or violent convictions.

Internship Dates:

January to May
June & July – Summer Internship Institute
September to December

Additional, customized internship sessions may be available based upon interest and skills level of applicants, and projects of the Center.

Placement for the Summer Internship Institute typically fill up by mid-April.  Preference will be given to full-time interns. Be sure to get your application in early.


*Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual and Transgender