Experiential learning is an active and transformative way to practice and apply your coursework to real world activities, problems, and organizations, then reflect upon the connections to your own understanding, skills, and growth.
Employers and professional schools are eager for candidates who bring a strong academic background as well as a range of skills that may be developed through experiential learning.
Gaining experience, coupled with academic success, leads to more opportunities after graduation.
Gain Experience Your Way
Depending on your strengths and interests, your academic program, and your plans for after graduation, certain kinds of experience may be more valuable than others. CAS students commonly participate in more than one kind of experiential learning, especially:
Hands-on experience with an employer that allows you to build skills while trying out a particular role, industry, or organization.
There are many ways to engage in your own research or participate in the research of world-class faculty.
Develop a global perspective, build independence, and strengthen language skills while earning credit in another country.
Engage with the UNL or external community on important issues by volunteering, advocating, providing service to others, or lending a hand on a project.
Influence, organize, and grow through student organizations or as a mentor or campus employee, and build your network along the way.
Beginning in Fall 2022, all incoming UNL students will be expected to participate in a significant experiential learning activity connecting their classroom learning to a real-world setting. This will be documented on your transcript and may yield credit hours applicable to your degree or recognized by a 0-credit course.
Planning and Reflecting
You will have help to plan your experiential learning up front, then reflect upon it as you complete it, specifically how it relates to your degree, and how it might relate to your future plans.
The CAS Career Coaches
Career coaches can help you determine the kinds of experience that will advance you toward your goals for life after graduation, whether those goals include employment or graduate/professional school. They will also help you identify specific opportunities using a variety of resources, then provide feedback on application materials and interview skills.
Understand what opportunities for experiential learning are built into the curriculum for your major or able to meet degree requirements. Your academic advisor can also help you identify the best time relative to your degree plan to engage.