Frequently Asked Questions

Transcript for 2015 Lynk-UAF Orientation

When can I start? 

The Lynk-UAF application opens in ISIS on the day of the LEAP Symposium each year.

Can I get funding to pay for a program that will find me an internship?

Any internship that meets the Lynk-UAF qualifications will be funded, including those obtained through a fee-based third-party program.  It is the internship itself, that qualifies or doesn’t, not the program.   To qualify for funding, you must have a specific internship and supervisor (employed by the internship site, not an outside program) by the Lynk-UAF deadline.  Internship Tip: Most internship opportunities can be secured without the support of a fee-based third party program.

Can I get funding to pay for a summer course that has a practical experience component, like a writing seminar?  

Not exactly. You may receive funding to pursue an internship or experiential project embedded in an academic program, but only for the internship or project itself.   This is possible when the experiential component alone meets all of the criteria for Lynk UAF (240 hours, substantive, relevant and well-supervised by an on-site, professional supervisor).   Any academic coursework or other supportive scaffolding may not be counted toward the 240 hours, and the supervisor must be employed by the internship organization, not by the academic institution. In order for the internship to be vetted within the Lynk UAF program, the specific internship must be secured by the final Lynk UAF deadline.

What if I don’t have a qualified internship by the final deadline (May 4, 2015)? 

If you have not secured a qualified internship by the deadline, then you unfortunately will not be eligible to receive Lynk-UAF this year.   Your internship advisor will be available to brainstorm alternate ways of reaching many of your summer goals without Lynk-UAF funding.

Can I get an exception to the housing policy? Dates?

Requests for housing outside of the standard dates and eligibility will be considered.  Exception requests are approved when it is feasible to do so, but approval is NOT guaranteed.

How soon after finalizing my application will I get my check?

About 2 weeks.  You will receive an email confirming the amount and timing of your check about 1 week after completing your application (including supervisor confirmation and academic advisor approval), and you should receive the check itself about 1 week after that.  If you are away from campus, add a few days to your timeline for mail forwarding.

I’ve received funding from the college for work during the academic year – can I still apply?

Yes.  Academic year funding is different from Lynk-UAF funding.

I received grant funding to work with a faculty member last year – can I still get UAF funding?

Yes.  Faculty secured grant funding is the one exception to the “funded-once” rule.  Students who have received summer faculty grant funding are still eligible for their one non-grant Lynk-UAF award, and vice versa.  This supports sustained mentoring in the lab that is beneficial for both the student and the professor

I completed one of the online trainings last year – can I just use that certificate?

If it is the exact same training, and you still have the certificate, then yes.  If the training was not exactly the same, please email the training details to for assessment.

Are taxes taken out of my Lynk-UAF check? 

The College does not deduct taxes from the Lynk-UAF awards of U.S. citizens, or of non-U.S. citizens working abroad.   It is required, however, to deduct taxes from the awards of non-U.S. citizens who will be working in the U.S.  This tax deduction varies depending on country of citizenship, but may be as much as 14% of the total stipend.  If your award is reduced by this tax, you should be able to file for reimbursement within the upcoming tax cycle. 

Do I have to declare my Lynk-UAF award on my taxes?

Typically, Lynk-UAF awards should be counted as income for tax purposes. We recommend that you refer to the IRS website for further information.  The college is not required to report Lynk-UAF grants to the IRS and does not do so, so you will not receive any tax documentation from MHC. We recommend that you file your check stub or direct deposit notice with your tax documents for future reference.

If I apply this year, but decline my award, can I apply again next year?

Yes, as long as you will otherwise be eligible.

Can I apply if I am on academic or other probation?

No.  Students on academic, social or any other form of probation may not apply for or receive a Lynk-UAF fellowship.

I am going abroad next semester/year.  Can I still apply?  If so, how do I fulfill my sustained reflection and presentation requirements?

Yes, you may still apply.   You must complete the online reflection form in the September following your Lynk-UAF experience, but you may complete the sustained reflection and presentation within 1 academic year of returning to MHC.

Do I have to keep my receipts, timesheets, or any other records over the summer?

No, but it will be very helpful for you to keep a journal of your experiences, that you can refer to when it is time to reflect.

I am not conducting research.  Do I have to take the research ethics and human subjects portions of the training?

Yes. Mount Holyoke College places a very high value on ethics. Human subjects and research ethics questions can arise unexpectedly even at internship sites that do not initially appear to include any research components.  The College is committed to ensuring that you have the knowledge required to make sound ethical decisions while working under MHC sponsorship, and to helping you effectively recognize and respond to ethics questions when they emerge unexpectedly in any workplace.


What do faculty have to do?

There are 3 roles that a faculty member can hold in the Lynk-UAF process:

  1. Internship Advisor – A student may ask that you serve as her internship advisor.  You will have a 30 minute advising session with that student (preferably early on in her search process), and confirm that appointment in ISIS.
  2. Academic Advisor – Once a student has secured a project, her Academic Advisor will be asked to review the project and approve it as a qualified Lynk-UAF opportunity.
  3. Supervisor/Mentor – If you are supervising a student researcher, you will also be acting as her project supervisor/mentor.  All supervisors are asked to review the project-specific information that the student provided, and to confirm its accuracy.

As a faculty member, you may not interact with the Lynk-UAF system at all, or you may play all 3 roles for one student. (ie. One of your academic advisees asks you to be her Internship Advisor, and then ultimately decides to work in your lab over the summer).

How can faculty and others provide detailed feedback on how the process works for them?

Email to share your feedback with the Lynk-UAF Committees.

How do I, as a faculty member, sponsor an internship and ensure a quality experience for the student and internship provider?

Step 1: Contact Eleanor Townsley ( and the Career Development Center (Jenny Watermill, to discuss your intention to sponsor an internship. 

Step 2: To advertise the position and review applications, post the job in LyonNet, MHC’s online internship, research and job database.   Career Development Center staff will add you as a LyonNet contact for the MHC Lynk Internship Program and assist you in the posting and application process.