Sociology ProgramDepartment of Sociology and Anthropology
Sociology Program

Mike Nelson

FBI Volunteer Research Internship

My internship experience was very unique when compared to most. Being a student at St. Cloud State University has enabled me to expand my horizons, especially while enrolled in a major that prepares me for real life experiences. When I first came to SCSU I had set a goal for myself. That goal was to be accepted to the Applied Sociology Major and to some day work at the Behavioral Science Unit at the FBI Academy in Quantico, Virginia. After spending the last three months doing just that, I have successfully finished my internship and am now preparing for graduation.

Over the course of my internship at the FBI’s Behavioral Science Unit I was able to accomplish a wide variety of work, opportunities, and experiences as an intern. I gained valuable work experience over the course of my internship at the BSU, including conducting research on school shootings, death investigations, and student teacher sexual abuse cases. This involved researching case information related to each research project and analyzing current data available on the subject. I worked with special agents and professional staff in each of these projects.

Michael Nelson FBI Building

Other opportunities to supplement our internship included attending conferences from international guest speakers on mental disorders, the touring of a forensic medical center, the holocaust memorial museum, and a juvenile sexual offender treatment facility.I was also given a chance to participate in new agent training activities and the chance to watch a new agent graduation ceremony. I also assisted Hostage and Rescue Team members (HRT) with training exercises by role playing as a potential terrorist, observed forensic sketch artists at work, lifted fingerprints at a latent fingerprint laboratory, and enjoyed many personal adventures taken outside the bureau into Washington D.C. to observe our nations capital.

During my internship I was also briefly able to attend class at SCSU. I was invited to participate in a video conference with John H. Campbell from the SCSU Criminal Justice department. This took place at SCSU while an FBI agent and I participated in an interview at Quantico. The video conference lasted about an hour, while I briefly discussed my internship, and my agent informed students about the FBI, the BSU, application requirements, and future careers within the FBI.

This internship has helped to specialize my career goals, professional interests, and has given me new directions. When I first applied to my major, I wrote an essay that described my future plans to work at the FBI, and specifically, the BSU. I have now taken one substantial step towards reaching that goal. This internship is an experience that I will never forget and a perfect culmination towards graduating at the end of this semester.

Michael Nelson FBI