Students

ALVA (Alliances for Learning and Vision for Underrepresented Americans)

ALVA students in lab coats MSEP ALVA is a college internship experience for first-year Engineering Undeclared students and second-year STARS students. Such students are encouraged to connect with MSEP during their initial year at the UW. Students can connect with MSEP by meeting with an MSEP Adviser, attending an MSEP ALVA presentation, enrolling in Academic Workshops, or contacting MSEP.

For other ALVA programs, consider the UW GenOM ALVA Program or the Foster School of Business.

About ALVA

Open to all students, the ALVA intern program targets students who have connected with MSEP during their first year and are pursuing studies in engineering. ALVA is a partnership between industry and the Minority Scholars Engineering Program that seeks to significantly increase the retention-to-graduation rate in engineering for students from underrepresented minority communities.

During the intern portion, ALVA students work with professionals so they can better visualize themselves as future engineers. Most recent ALVA students have worked for companies such as The Boeing Company and Blue Origin. Students gain valuable professional mentors who can support them throughout their engineering schooling and career. The intern portion of ALVA begins mid to late June and concludes in September (up to 12 weeks).

In addition to the hands-on engineering experience, ALVA students will be engaged with the College of Engineering and other ALVA students to develop their academic and interpersonal skills prior to and during the internship. Students selected for ALVA will enroll in ENGR 202 in the spring quarter before the summer internship. ENGR 202 will provide professional development as recommended by host sites and allow students to build their ALVA cohort. About every third week during the summer, students will come together to maintain and strengthen their cohort via MSEP ALVA sponsored weekend events. At the conclusion of the internship, students will do a presentation at the host site on their overall MSEP ALVA experience. Students who complete ALVA are better-prepared, more motivated and come out with a strong peer and professional network. All of these combine to increase their chances of completing a four-year degree in engineering.

ALVA application process

Applicants to the MSEP ALVA program must satisfy the following for the current academic year:

  • Have matriculated to the UW as a first-year engineering undeclared student or a second-year STARS student.
  • Maintain their status as an engineering undeclared or STARS student, or receive placement in an engineering major.
  • Persist in engineering curriculum throughout the year.

Apply to MSEP ALVA beginning early November (UWNetID login required) or email MSEP to request an application.

Application deadline: TBD for the 2019-20 academic year.

What MSEP ALVA participants have said...

"The University of Washington offers many great programs to help gain engineering experience but there is none better than ALVA."

"There are not too many college freshmen who can say they worked their first summer at a prestigious company in the engineering field and earned a salary too!"

"The internship was an amazing experience and a great opportunity; I strongly encourage all interested and eligible freshmen to apply."

"ALVA is SO much more than 'work'.  Meeting the Blue Angels and having ALVA weekends, I've made some of my greatest friends this summer..."

"The friends and coworkers you'll make will provide excellent support both in and out of the classroom."

"Due to the skills I acquired during my summer at The Boeing Company,I will be returning to intern next summer."