The practicum course allows MSCS graduate students to gain practical experience and earn a competitive wage in industry while earning credit towards their degree. Both students and employers find this to be an extremely valuable experience.
MSCS graduate students, including most international students, are eligible for the practicum option after they have completed one academic year (or 16 units). For full-time students that started in the Fall semester, the first term of eligibility is the summer semester.
Most software development internships qualify. There is an unmet need for software developers in the Bay Area, and most internships pay a competitive wage. Students may work part-time during the school year and full-time during the summer. Many students are hired by their practicum company after graduating.
"The practicum experience for me was immensely useful. Since I had no prior industry experience, the opportunity provided by the school to go out there and work to build production software and gain some exposure to the industry standards was very useful. The school being strategically located in the Bay Area gives us students, international and local, a chance to work at a firm of our choice."
Prithviraj, Class of 2014
"The most important and best reward from practicum experience, for my perspective, is that I became much more confident about my future!"
Xiaoou, Class of 2014
International students on a F1 visa must apply for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) to receive authorization to work in the United States. International students on a J1 visa may also be eligible to apply for work authorization through Academic Training.