University of Connecticut University of UC Title Fallback Connecticut


UConn Urban Semester Program, Hartford, Connecticut (Faculty-led)

The Program

The Urban Semester Program offers students a tremendous opportunity for service learning and public service in Hartford, Connecticut. Nowhere are American urban challenges any greater than in Hartford, a city full of contrasts that embody need and potential, struggle and hope, and wealth and poverty. It is a city rich with diversity and urban cultures, home to people from all over the world. For 50 years, UConn students have participated in this unique semester-long program that combines classroom study, service learning through an internship, and urban living in the state’s capital.

As a participant in the program, you are offered the opportunity to work in the heart of the city’s community and non-profit organizations and government agencies. Depending on your area of interest and major, your internship can address issues facing the city, ranging from education to homelessness and youth issues, the criminal justice system, and economic development, to name just a few. Previous internships have been in school-related programs, shelters, advocacy organizations, political offices, state and local government and many other settings.

Urban Semester placements include the following areas: Health and Human Services, Federal, State and Local Government, Community Organizing, Social Work, Advocacy and Research, Peace and Justice, Civil Rights, Environmental Rights, Community Media, Urban Problems, The Justice System, Welfare Rights, Women’s issues, and Youth Development.

The Academics

You are required to participate in two 3 credit seminars that meet weekly in addition to your 9 credit internship.  The seminars are designed to help you put theory into practice and to increase your knowledge and understanding of urban issues and how Hartford’s social service organizations and political bodies respond. Classes are held at the UConn West Hartford campus. Student should be second semester sophomores to participate in the program.

INTD 3590: Urban Field Studies (9 credits): Supervised Field Work (9 credits) Students choose to work in a Hartford organization that meet their interests. The Program Director assists each student in understanding the activities of internship and deciding what placement best meets his/her needs. Students have full choice in selecting the internship. You spend 3 1/2 days a week in the field are supervised by agency staff. The Program Director in consultation with the agency staff evaluates students’ performance. Students are required to analyze their experiences in written journals. With departmental permission, students may elect to count 3 credits toward HDFS 3080, POLS 3991, PSYC 3880, SOCI 3990/3991 or other department internship credit.

INTD 3594: Urban Semester Field Work Seminar (3 credits)
Open only to students in the program. Must be taken concurrently with INTD 3590 and INTD 3584. Students make analytic presentations of their field experiences, relating these to the pertinent available literature. Particular urban problems are discussed with invited experts and guest speakers from outside the university. May be taken for W credit.

INTD 3584: Seminar in Urban Problems (3 credits)  Open only to students in the program.  Discussions are based on assigned readings and led by invited speakers from within the university.

The Experience

You will share an apartment in Hartford with other students in the program.  Arrangements are made for students to enter a short-term lease with an apartment complex in downtown Hartford. The location allows students to make the most of their urban semester.  Your location in downtown Hartford will enable you to easily reach your internship site, as well as museums, theater, concerts, movies, and other local cultural events.

For information about the program, contact the Urban Semester Program Director, Edith Barrett, Urban and Community Studies and Public Policy: or


Elizabeth C. Hanson Scholarship
The Elizabeth C. Hanson Scholarship provides up to $1,500 to support students who are pursuing an internship in an international setting or in an organization deeply engaged in international matters. Undergraduates interested in international relations, international political economy, critical global issues, and international culture and institutions are eligible to apply. Click here for more information.Please note that this program charges program fees and not tuition. This affects the types of financial aid that can be applied to defray the cost. Click the link below for this program’s budget sheet and contact the UConn Office of Financial Aid Services for information regarding your individual financial aid package.

You may apply the following types of financial aid to the cost of this program: CT Aid for Public College Students Grant, Federal Title IV Funds including Pell Grant, SEOG, Stafford Loans, Perkins Loans, Parent Loans, and private scholarships.

You may not apply the following types of financial aid to the cost of this program: Federal Work Study, Tuition Remission Grant, University Grant, Tuition Waiver, and academic scholarships (such as Day of Pride, Nutmeg, Presidential, Leadership and Academic Excellence Scholarship).

Budget Sheets: Fall, Spring
The Details

  • Location: Hartford, Connecticut, United States
  • Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Homepage:

Dates / Deadlines:

Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2018 11/07/2017 11/07/2017 01/16/2018 05/05/2018
Fall 2018 03/08/2018 03/15/2018 TBD TBD
Spring 2019 10/01/2018 10/08/2018 TBD TBD

Fact Sheet:

Class status: 2nd Year, 3rd Year, 4th+ Year Academic area: Social Sciences, Humanities
Language of instruction: English Prior language study required: None
Open to non-UConn students: Yes Required GPA: