Department of Consumer Protection Internship Programs
We are committed to providing an opportunity for students to learn and gain practical work experience by working with one of our distinct divisions, or the Commissioner’s office. Our internship program is designed to expose students to the broad scope of the agency’s work, at the same time assigning projects and tasks that are within one of DCP’s divisions.
We work to assure that all intern projects contribute to the agency’s overall mission, and that they understand how their work contributes to that mission. Interns are included in all relevant meetings, in and outside the agency; interns are also exposed to day-day-operations, which may include communications, community outreach, legislative strategy, enforcement, investigations, and information technology. DCP will offer student interns opportunities to work in ongoing programs as well as specific projects designed for the student.
We prefer to work with students in the traditional semester model, but are willing to work around any individual’s scheduling needs within standard work hours.
Our intention is to provide an opportunity for students to use and build upon existing skills, learn new skills, expand their experience, and be exposed to policy and practice in state government.
An applicant should be able to work with diverse team members in an environment that frequently requires adjustment to changing needs. In addition, an applicant must have good research skills and excellent writing skills.
This is an unpaid internship, and we encourage students to apply for credit from their college or university.
Below is a list of DCP's divisions that may accept interns. Not all divisions may be accepting interns at the time of your application.
- Education and Outreach is part of the Commissioner’s office and is responsible for developing programs, initiatives, public education campaigns and materials to identify and reach underserved communities, and to assure that all of the Department’s public-facing material is available in plain language. Through research and civic engagement, we attempt to identify barriers and challenges to reaching people who are marginalized by ethnicity, race, language, class, education, culture, citizenship status and physical and cognitive disabilities.
- Communications is also part of the Commissioner’s office and is responsible for all external communications. The Director of Communications works with all divisions to determine the best response to press inquiries, writes all press releases, designs external publications, manages our social media channels and is responsible for developing the agency’s public communications strategy. The Director also works closely with the Legislative Director on public facing legislative efforts as well as the Education and Outreach Director on the concept, writing, and production of consumer-facing publications, and other projects that address consumer education.
- Legislative and Policy, also part of the Commissioner’s Office, develops and manages legislative strategy for the Department of Consumer Protection. The Legislative Director also works with the directors within the Department, the Office of the Governor and the Office of Policy and Management to craft legislative agenda addressing issues affecting consumer protection, drug control, liquor regulation and medical marijuana. Additionally, the Director collaborates with other state agencies with similar areas of regulatory oversight and serves as point of contact among the Department, professional and trade associations, and their lobbyists.
Divisions that Work Across, and Support the Whole Agency:
- The Legal Division is responsible for compliance, enforcement and legislative implementation for all divisions of Consumer Protection. This division conducts investigations, prosecutes administrative enforcement actions, oversees compliance audits, and drafts legislation. In addition to oversight of legal issues affecting the divisions, Legal investigates and enforces the Connecticut Unfair Trade Practices Act (CUTPA). The Legal Division also oversees the State’s Lemon Law Program and manages the Home Improvement Guaranty Fund and the New Home Construction Guaranty Fund.
More information about legal internships can be found at: Legal Division Internships
- Operations supports the work of the agency by providing technical assistance to staff, both in addressing existing technology challenges through its Helpdesk, as well as leading process improvement efforts to help the agency become more efficient and customer-oriented. In addition, Operations manages the Complaint Center, which fields issues and inquiries from consumers and businesses. Where possible, the Complaint Center seeks to mediate or provide direct information, or may refer the issue to the appropriate internal or external resource. The Complaint Center also tracks trends in complaints in an attempt to identify existing and potential areas of concern for consumers, enabling other divisions within the agency to educate the public and/or begin a legal case against a particular business that has repeatedly broken the law.
Department of Consumer Protection Divisions:
- The Drug Control Division works to protect the health and safety of Connecticut residents by regulating the distribution of all legal drugs, medical devices and cosmetics in Connecticut. It also oversees Connecticut licensing for pharmacies, pharmacists, controlled substance providers and laboratories, pharmacy technicians, and drug manufacturers and wholesalers. The division also manages and regulates the Medical Marijuana Program and the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP).
- The Food and Standards Division regulates all persons and businesses that manufacture or sell food products in the state, and ensures that weighing and measuring devices in Connecticut are accurate. Staff also test motor fuel octane, investigate complaints about gasoline stations and heating fuel, and inspect restaurants, bakeries and grocery stores for cleanliness and safety.
- The Investigations Division protects the public from unfair or deceptive business practices, fraud, and scams that affect the Connecticut marketplace, including those sometimes associated with home improvement and new home construction. The Division enforces CUTPA and helps to mediate disputes between buyers and sellers. This division is responsible for all legal action the agency is authorized to take.
- The Gaming Division works to ensure the highest degree of integrity in the conduct of all forms of legalized gaming within the State of Connecticut and the federally recognized Tribal Nations within the State, by licensing or permitting all individuals and entities that are involved with legalized gaming and by monitoring and educating to ensure compliance with the gaming laws and the Tribal-State agreements.
- The License Services Division processes more than 208,000 licenses each year. Staff also responds to questions about renewals, payments, and other processing issues related to licenses, permits and registrations.
- The Liquor Control Division safeguards the health and safety of Connecticut citizens by regulating all persons and firms involved in distributing, selling, and dispensing alcoholic liquor in order to prevent sales to minors and intoxicated persons, maintain product integrity, and ensure that licensed premises are safe and sanitary.
- The Occupational & Professional Licensing Division protects the public health, safety, and welfare of Connecticut citizens by assuring that only qualified, competent persons are licensed in the occupational trades and in several professional licensing categories. This division also administers eighteen professional Boards, Councils and Commissions to review, establish and maintain educational training and examination standards and in several cases, to help implement and administer statutory and regulatory provisions.