How to Get Involved in the iConsult Collaborative at Syracuse University
Active Syracuse University Student: You must be matriculated into a Syracuse University degree program with active status in order to become a part of an iConsult Collaborative Project Team.
Time Commitment: We expect a minimum of 5-10 hours per week from iConsult project team members. This means, on average, one or two hours per day. Students are expected to fulfill this commitment, though you can concentrate hours during a particular part of the week to avoid conflict with your class work. Project team members must attend meetings of the team, as well as meetings with the project Client when team members are expected. We expect project team members to prioritize project work as second only to class work.
Compensation: Project team members are unpaid, but you will gain valuable experience working on real projects that can be listed as real work experience on your resume. Project team members are considered to be part-time employees of the iConsult Collaborative at Syracuse University, and the iConsult office will verify this employment for future employer background checks.
Application Process: You may either apply for a specific project team opening (see Job Board below), or you may register in general to be considered for an iConsult Collaborative opening as it comes available (select the “Register with the iConsult Collaborative” button).
Rolling Application Timeline: We accept student applications year-round because we always have active projects. Some time periods require more students than others, but there is no deadline for application. We hold all applications for review when any project team opening occurs. Students who have previously applied are always considered first when a new team member is needed for a project.
Selection for a Project Team: Our teams are staffed on an as-needed basis. Therefore, we may not have an opening on a team at the time you apply. However, all applications are reviewed, and students are placed on project teams based upon their interests and qualifications. Some project team roles will require experience in certain areas. Other roles can be more general, or they can be for students with little or no experience in a particular area. We try to mix students with more or less experience in order to establish a peer learning environment. Students are interviewed for positions on project teams.
Evidence of Active Participation – Digital Badges: Project team members who honor their commitments to their projects, demonstrating both quality work and professional attitude, will earn an official SU/iConsult digital badge confirming their role. Four digital badge levels may be earned:
- Consultant – Confirms active participation on a project team for three months or one project completion.
- Lead Consultant – Confirms outstanding performance on a project team
- Project Lead – Confirms active role as a team leader for a specific project
- Program Manager – Confirms active role as a Program Manager, a paid member of the Project Management Office (PMO) for the iConsult Collaborative Program.
iConsult Job Board
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I earn internship credit for my work with iConsult?
If a credit-bearing internship in the topic area of a project that we have is either an optional, or required, part of your degree program at SU, then it is likely that an iConsult project will be able to count as an internship. If you have any concerns about whether it can count, please contact your school advisor for details about possible internships and how to obtain any necessary permission from the school. If needed, we can work directly with your school to arrange such permissions.
Students in the Applied Data Science Master’s program in the School of Information Studies must first obtain permission from the degree Program Director to count any work in iConsult for degree program credit.
Internships are not subject to the late-add deadlines and can be started at any time. However, we use 50-hours of work per 1 credit of internship as a measure of effort in all iConsult internships. Therefore, before enrolling in an internship, we must ensure that at the rate a student is working on a project that they can still contribute the required quantity of hours to their project in the term in which they file internship credit.
Internship credits may not be earned for work completed in prior terms – only for work in the present term of the internship credit filing.
To get started with filing internship credits for iConsult project work, contact the Program Director, Dr. Art Thomas at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can future employers contact iConsult for employment verification?
Yes, but iConsult projects are not listed through Syracuse University Human Resources as employment positions with the University. Please list ONLY that you worked for the iConsult Collaborative at Syracuse University, and give the contact as the Program Director, Dr. Art Thomas at email@example.com, 315-443-5962. It may take a day to respond to a verification request.
DO NOT MAKE UP A TITLE FOR YOURSELF on your resume or LinkedIn profile for your work on an iConsult project. Your assigned Program Manager will provide your official title. Remember, it is fraudulent to pretend that your role on a project was something other than what it actually was. If you give inaccurate information about your work in iConsult, the Program Director will NOT verify your work experience, and any earned digital badges may be revoked.
Why are project team members not paid?
We are not allowed to charge any fees to external clients for our services, so we must keep costs to a minimum. If we paid student team members, and then charged our clients for the costs, we would first rule out many opportunities for students to gain practical experience in areas of their interest – not all organizations would be willing or able to pay for services. In addition, if the University charged a fee for iConsult services to clients, this would make each project a Sponsored Project, which is a special category of official university projects that have objectives which are very different from the purpose of the iConsult Collaborative.
The focus of the Collaborative is on student experiential learning only, not fee-based services, so we offer opportunities for students to voluntarily earn the experience they can later use to enhance their resume and obtain future employment.
Can I choose the project I work on?
For those projects that are listed in the iConsult Job Board, you may submit an application to that particular team and position. Sometimes, however, similar openings are available on multiple teams. You will always be interviewed before being assigned to a team.
The most successful iConsult team members are those who recognize ways to learn from any experience. It isn’t always about building specific job skills in order to get a specific job later. Much of interviewing for a future job involves your ability to discuss how you can successfully navigate organization culture and politics, changing requirements, direct client interaction, stakeholder engagement, and interaction with people. These skills can be learned in every project in iConsult, so we encourage students to broaden their overall ability to function successfully in a project environment even if you don’t always focus on something specific.
When do students start work on projects?
The iConsult Collaborative at Syracuse University works year-round, so we can theoretically begin a project at any time.
Your assigned Program Manager will work out scheduling details with each team member.
Does iConsult work count toward the 20 hours maximum work per week for international students?
The work in iConsult is unpaid and it is an on-campus experiential learning program. Therefore, it is not reportable as on-campus employment for international students and does not interfere with the 20-hours of paid employment to which international students are limited. It is not required for international students to file CPT credit to work unpaid in an iConsult project team.
Do I need experience in order to serve on an iConsult project team?
Some students will be more experienced than others, but the point of the program is to provide an opportunity for professional growth for all who are involved. Students gain practical application of their knowledge, while the organization gains the opportunity to make progress toward their project-related goals.
We select students for skills and/or interest related to a project, for attitude and ownership of responsibility, and for your willingness to volunteer your time while building your resume.
Can I serve on multiple projects at the same time?
Sometimes if a student has a skillset that is hard to find, we may allow the opportunity to serve on more than one project team.
However, our philosophy is to foster growth through experience, so we generally limit participation to one project so that more students can benefit from the iConsult Collaborative opportunity.
Can I continue working on future iConsult projects if our team has completed a project?
Yes – as long as you have demonstrated active participation and ownership of responsibility with your previous project, we allow you to continue to serve on another project team if it is a good match.
Hear from our consultants
“My biggest takeaway from working with iConsult so far has been the growth I have had when it comes to finding solutions to complex issues while working on any project. Furthermore, meeting with clients and new people helped me get in touch with their creative perspectives to engage with their ideas and help them find solutions which in turn helped develop an inclination towards problem-solving and project management.”
“iConsult provided me an opportunity to learn and as well as apply newly acquired skills to solve problems arising in the real world. I am having a good time from attending meetings to solving tasks assigned. It is a great platform that allows us to make friends and network with peers.”
– Akansha Achukola
“I gained real-world experience as a consultant, had the opportunity to apply my talents to a project, learned new things along the road, and had the opportunity to network.”
– Karan Someshwar