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PACE internship programme

13 September 2023

UC's Professional and Community Engagement (PACE) programme offers unique Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) courses so students can apply what they're learning in the real world as they study. This means you can work on a project with a business while you earn academic course credits. Learn more about UC's PACE internship programme.


The PACE Programme offers unique Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) courses which allow students to apply what they are learning during their degree to the real world. By completing a PACE course at UC, students work on a project with a local, national or international business or organisation while also earning academic course credits.

A PACE Internship is an ideal complement to a students core subject and will help them not only develop workplace skills, but also confidence in the applicability of their existing skills and attributes. Classroom work sitting alongside the internship gives students the opportunity to reflect upon their career development objectives.

Benefits of the PACE Internship Programme

  • Improves employability
  • Put degree work into practice
  • Builds networks
  • Develops industry and business knowledge
  • Develops personal and professional skills


Who can apply for PACE

Students from all disciplines can complete a PACE Internship, often as one of the elective courses for your degree or additional course. It is dependent on being able to fit it into your degree plan and your schedule. We recommend you speak with your Faculty Student Advisor to make sure PACE fits in with your study goals.

While internships are not guaranteed, the PACE Office works closely with students to understand their goals and motivations to find the best internship opportunity.

Students who have completed an internship have come from diverse degree backgrounds, including (but not limited to):

  • Media and Communications
  • Computer Science
  • Education
  • Geography
  • Sociology
  • Art History
  • Marketing
  • Psychology
  • Languages
  • History
  • Fine Arts
  • Criminal Justice
  • Human Services
  • Philosophy
  • Classics
  • Education
  • Finance
  • Data science

Types of internships available

The following are examples of different types of internship roles students have had:

  • Environmental impact projects
  • Research and report writing
  • Marketing strategies
  • Data analysis
  • Policy analysis and writing
  • Social media platform creation
  • Project management
  • Creative Arts administration
  • Event management
  • Content creation eg websites, social media
  • Exhibition curation
  • Translation
  • Coding
  • Community engagement initiatives
  • Urban planning
  • GIS mapping
  • Creative writing

PACE Courses

PACE Internships are available semester 1, semester 2 and during summer school each year and are offered at different levels:







Project based

15 points

Based on campus

Semester 1 only


Internship based

15 points

70 hours

Semester 2 and Summer School


Study tour

30 points

Trip to Wellington

Summer school only


Abroad Internship

30 points

140 hours

Summer School


Internship based

30 points

140 hours

Semester 1, Semester 2 and Summer School


Internship based

30 points

140 hours

Semester 1 and Semester 2

 Each internship-based course contains three components

  • Internship with a partner organisation or business
  • Workshops with a focus on personal development
  • Assignments

Personal Development covers a variety of topics such as communication skills, teamwork, reflection, uncertainty, goal setting, skills assessment and more. These skills are important in any workplace and offer a chance for students to put these into practice during their internship.

These courses provide opportunities for students to work as an intern on a bespoke project with a business or other organisation further enhancing their learning through classroom based workshops, related academic assignments and reflective exercises.

This combination often leads to increased confidence and understanding of the students own abilities as well as a clearer sense of their career development learning objectives.

For students who would like to develop their skills in a safe, on campus project based environment, PACE225 could be for you. PACE225: Workplace Skills and Corporate Social Responsibility is a campus-based course being offered in Semester 1 which provides an opportunity for students to work with a corporation to advance its community engagement objectives. Students work together in small groups to develop workplace skills while also making a difference to a particular community.

“This course just gives you so much in so little time. I felt like I have taken almost every single subject offered at UC in just one class! There is undoubtedly going to be a topic of interest for everyone… You get a bite of everything needed to succeed in a professional environment and helping a business be more community-minded. We had an abundance of amazing guest speakers from lecturers in their fields, business professionals like Sharesies, to local community heroes. I assure you that you will definitely get something out of it, probably the most of any course and that’s a big statement.” – Andrew Moneda

"PACE225 helped me gain a deeper and better understanding of the importance of employability skills. I have developed many transferrable skills such as planning, effective communication, leadership, and self-management."
- Lupepe Saofai

Have an interest in the EU? This unique course, PACE335, offers an introduction to the EU and its place on the global stage and its relationship with New Zealand, contemporary challenges and more. This course includes a study tour to Wellington with the opportunity to meet with European Embassies and NZ Government officials which sets the scene for a public diplomacy analysis and personal reflection.

The Professional and Community Engagement (PACE) international internship course provides an opportunity for practical application of disciplinary theory, skills, and knowledge prior to and during your international internship experience. This course is open to students who have already secured their internship placement and to students who are seeking an international placement through Ako ā-Mahi, when available. Availability of placements, associated costs of travel and accommodation, and student support whilst on international work placement will vary according to the internship programme in which the students are enrolled.

Half of this course will take place in the classroom where you have the opportunity to develop your professionalism and broaden the application of your academic discipline to an international context, and half the course takes place in the international workplace where you can put that knowledge to use.

PACE is an ideal complement to any major or minor. Training in this area will help you to develop key skills in preparation for the modern workplace. Working jointly on projects with businesses or community organisations, PACE students learn to provide productive outcomes, develop strategies, and enhance your employability skills.

Internships can be transformational for both students and partner organisations alike.

Three times a year we celebrate internship success, awarding prizes to those who have recently completed an internship. At the same celebration event, we welcome in the new students and organisations.

PACE courses have been running at UC for over 7 years now. There are many stories of PACE Alumni having gone on to meaningful and interesting careers.

Application and Enrolment Process

If you are interested in the PACE Internship Programme:

  1. Speak with a Student Advisor to see if PACE can fit into your degree structure - remember, PACE is a UC course
  2. Apply: we recommend applying at least one month prior to the start of each intake. Applications after this date are considered on a case-by-case basis.
  3. The PACE Office will contact you to arrange an informal interview with you
  4. If a suitable internship is found, you will meet with the partner organisation
  5. Enrol in PACE course in myUC

The PACE Internship Programme has three intakes each year and follows the semester dates.

Application deadlines

Semester 115 January
Semester 230 May
Summer15 October

Please note:

  • Entry into the PACE Internship Programme requires an additional application
  • PACE Internship courses remain subject at all times to the availability of suitable placements and is subject to the final decision of the PACE Office.
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