HOW DO P.A.I.N.T. internshipS WORK?

Arts Integration Menomonie (A.I.M.) partners with local schools and organizations as part of its P.A.I.N.T. (Program for Arts Integration for New Teachers) internship program. In P.A.I.N.T., university students work in paid internships to teach arts-based classes in the Menomonie community.

The PAINT program employs a tiered structure for internships, using a “step system” approach as interns progress toward independent teaching.

p.a.i.n.t. TIERS



Intern is placed at a local school to observe a teacher and assist with classroom activities.

(20 hours at $10/hour = $200)

  • observE and assisT a classroom teacher at a local school

As the first “tier” of the P.A.I.N.T. internship framework, the “Pre-P.A.I.N.T.” experience is designed to ease the university student intern into the role of a teacher.

the university student observes and assists a mentor teacher in their classroom, sharing teaching responsibilities when appropriate.

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Partner Teaching

Intern is partnered with another
university student intern or mentor teacher to share teaching responsibilities of a community art class.

(40 hours at $12.00/hour = $480)

  • teach with a partner or mentor at a community/school organization

Tier two is an “official” 40-hour P.A.I.N.T. internship.

the university student intern teaches a community art class with another intern or a teaching mentor.

Pre-requisite: Tier One internship or UW-Stout course practicum experience.

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Solo Teaching

Intern assumes all responsibility for planning & teaching a community art class.

tier three internship
(40 hours at $14.00/hour = $560)

  • SOLO teaching at a community/school organization

Tier three is an “official” 40-hour P.A.I.N.T. internship.

the university student intern teaches a community art class independently, assuming all responsibility for planning, instruction, communicating with families, etc.

Pre-requisite: Tier Two internship.

“PRE-P.A.I.N.T.” INTERNSHIPs (tier one)

The first tier, called a pre-PAINT internship, promotes easy entry into internship teaching, inviting university students as early as their freshman year to participate. The pre-PAINT internship involves observing/assisting a classroom teacher in a 20-hour “pre” internship. Pre-PAINT internships are very flexible in that the university student can coordinate their hours in the classroom around their college schedule. There is no expectation for the pre-PAINT intern to plan or teach any lessons at this point, but rather, they are welcomed into the classroom as a guest “helper”, observing and assisting the classroom teacher with students however the intern feels comfortable. If, for whatever reason, the intern no longer wishes to participate, the internship is canceled with no penalty to the intern. They are paid for the number of hours they completed.


Interested university students in a pre-PAINT internship complete the brief application form on the AIM website, indicating how many pre-internships they desire for a given semester. Hired pre-PAINT interns then complete the necessary paperwork and attend a group orientation for the P.A.I.N.T. program. The PAINT Coordinator works with the local school district or regional alumni districts to pair the university student with a mentor teacher, after which the coordinator begins the initial communication between the intern and mentor teacher. The internship commences in an initial visit to the school site by the intern, which is coordinated via email between the intern and mentor teacher. At this initial meeting, the intern and mentor teacher make their introductions in person and soon after, they determine the interns’ schedule of observations. From this point on, the pre-PAINT intern works under the direction of the mentor teacher and with support of the P.A.I.N.T. Coordinator, until the observation hours are completed. Interns are paid bi-weekly at an hourly pay rate based upon internship tier. Upon completion of a 20-hour pre-P.A.I.N.T. internship, the intern will have earned approximately $200.

Kaydence Ruff,  Pre-PAINT intern, Early Childhood Education program at UW-Stout

Kaydence Ruff, Pre-PAINT intern, Early Childhood Education program at UW-Stout


“I had the wonderful experience of working with Mrs. Bossany, a kindergarten teacher at River Heights Elementary school. She was incredible to observe. The first thing I learned from her is to always make everyone feel comfortable. The first time I was there, she planned a whole morning message about me so that all the children felt comfortable with me in the classroom. She later informed me that she always does this with guests because it is beneficial for the guest to learn about the class along with the students to feel comfortable with the guest. The majority of my time was spent in the classroom on Monday mornings. I observed the children’s morning meeting, reading, math, and phonics activities… I have had a couple experiences in classrooms with teachers, but this experience was my favorite. Mrs. Bossany truly made me feel a part of the classroom, and I will miss going there. She has been an excellent guide for me to ask questions about teaching. I thank the PAINT program for allowing me this awesome experience!”

“official” P.A.I.N.T. INTERNSHIPs (tiers two and three)

For “official” PAINT internships (Tiers 2 or 3), the P.A.I.N.T. Coordinator works with partner organizations to host weekly art classes to be taught by pre-service teachers via paid internships, totaling approximately 40 hours over the course of a semester. The types of classes offered depend upon the organization’s attendees, as well as the skill sets, interests, and schedules of the college student(s) who will potentially teach the class(es). The coordinator determines the logistics (schedule, facilities, supplies, enrollment, etc.) for the class(es), and offers them as paid internships for university students in teacher education programs to apply via the AIM website. Hired interns then complete the necessary paperwork at a group orientation meeting for the P.A.I.N.T. program. The internship begins shortly after the orientation date, and in accordance with the planned schedule for class meetings. The intern works under the direction of the site mentor/supervisor; in collaboration with a partner intern (if applicable) and with support of the P.A.I.N.T. Coordinator and/or site supervisor to plan and teach the class. Interns are paid bi-weekly at an hourly pay rate based upon internship tier. Upon completion of each 40-hour P.A.I.N.T. internship, the intern will have earned approximately $500-600.

Olivia Revolinski , PAINT intern, Art Education program at UW-Stout

Olivia Revolinski, PAINT intern, Art Education program at UW-Stout


“The experience of P.A.I.N.T. internships has been very valuable over the course of my time at UW-Stout. Coming into this program as a transfer sophomore, I was not sure how far my experience with coaching for my local swim team would get me in an art classroom. Through P.A.I.N.T. internships, I learned how to translate art as a subject into art as an avenue for students to learn about themselves. The greatest thing that I have taken from these lessons (I am primarily working with students at the elementary level) is to be flexible in lessons, especially if that allows the student to enhance their self expression. I provide opportunities for these students to experiment and make projects that push their creative minds! Also, these internships allow me to know the students that live in Menomonie. I feel that sometimes as college students we are disconnected within the actual community that we live in. These internships allowed me to develop relationships with the youth of Menomonie, who could possibly be my students in my student teaching in a couple years. Finally, P.A.I.N.T. has shown me how much joy I receive from teaching. Through the experience of these internships, I have found a love for inspiring others. Providing techniques and materials for their passions to be displayed through art is an honor. I plan on continuing with these internships, as every new internship provides a new opportunity for me to learn how I can make myself a better educator.” OLIVIA REVOLINSKI, Art Education

Intern Elizabeth Rosendahl teaches stepping stone projects as part of her Arts and Crafts internship at Jumpstart Afterschool Program for grades K-5.