students collaborating on a laptop with swatches and papers on the table in front of them

The Real World Seeks Out Champlain

The Centers of Experience are where you can go to test out your classroom theories on real-world projects. They are hubs of innovation that connect Champlain talent to the greater Burlington community, and sometimes, to the world.

While each center has its own identity and provides unique services, they all share the same mission: to bridge your classroom learning with professional experience.

You’ll build specialized skills in your industry and a robust resume of projects that will impress employers.

An office scene with two different cubicles, one with two people collaborating on a project and one with an individual doing work alone. There are a lot of posters on the wall behind them.

Experience That Counts

Get Credit

Dozens of internship positions are available through the Centers of Experience each semester that could satisfy academic requirements for an internship, if applicable to your major.

Get Paid

Pick up a career-relevant part-time job or paid internship at one of our Centers of Experience and enjoy the feeling of getting paid to do what you love.

Build Your Portfolio

Because you’ll work on real projects, you’ll have real talking points and work samples that you can show to future employers.

Work with Clients

This one’s a biggie, but trust us. You’ll have to work with others, think critically, and consider goals and expectations your entire career. Get ahead and start now.


Centers of Experience, all conveniently located right here on campus.


Collective value of the centers’ contracts and projects for clients including the U.S. Secret Service, the United Nations, the Ford Foundation, and Vermont Teddy Bear.


Number of internships and part-time job postings at the Centers of Experience available to students in AY 2022-23.

Leahy Center for Digital Forensics & Cybersecurity

The Leahy Center is a world-class laboratory that provides information assurance, digital forensic investigation, and cybersecurity services to corporate clients in Burlington and beyond.

On any given day, you might see the Leahy Center testing out smart refrigerators or robot vacuums for risk assessment, or quietly safeguarding personal data and fighting off malware.

Learn More About the Leahy Center
a window into the Leahy Center shows students at work

From law enforcement agencies in the federal government to small businesses and nonprofits here in Vermont, the Leahy Center is a trusted resource for digital investigation, end-user support, vulnerability assessments, and consulting.

Supervised by professionals, students like you receive exceptional hands-on experience while the Leahy Center delivers cost-effective services to its clients. It’s a win-win for everyone.

a large monitor in a professional environment featuring lots of visual data

Being at the leading edge of tech requires a deep understanding of existing technologies and access to emerging trends, tools, and products. The Leahy Center has it all and invites you to dig into hands-on research with their equipment and even pursue your capstone projects with them.

Our students have rebuilt back-up networks and developed policies for the center, presented new and easier ways of looking a computer’s history to law enforcement, developed travel apps, and more.

students and professor consider information on large screens

The Leahy Center is a recognized leader in cybersecurity education and training.

National Security Agency (NSA)
The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Champlain College as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (NCAE-C).

Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center (DC3)
Champlain was the first school in the Northeast designated as a National Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence (CDFAE) by the Department of Defense Cyber Crime Center.


National Security Agency logo and National Center of Academic Excellence logo
Working at The Leahy Center gave me an opportunity to take what I learned in classes and apply it, hands-on, with the added experience of communicating with others to fully understand the problems that I solve day to day.
Zari Daniels ’25, Computer & Digital Forensics

Center for Community & Social Justice

students marching through burlington rallying for climate change with signs

Housed in the School of Social Innovation, the Center for Community & Social Justice is a think tank and incubator of long-term societal solutions. It integrates Champlain’s expertise in criminal justice, social work, and other disciplines across the college for projects that help develop the next practice models of community engagement, social safety networks, and policing that support whole community health and safety.

Learn More About the Center for Community & Social Justice
students uses a bullhorn; reads from notes

Each year, the center supports multiple research fellowships—open to the entire Champlain community—for projects that bridge disciplines across campus and align with the center’s mission and interests. Past projects have explored the role of school resource officers in Vermont schools; policing methods in Eugene, Oregon; and have even taken the form of a podcast dedicated to addressing diversity.

Systemic racism is a public health issue, and one that should be addressed at every level. To do this, we must learn to be actively antiracist and to bring antiracist practices into our lives and workplaces.
Dr. Patti Aldridge, Dean, School of Social Innovation

Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship

The Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship (CIE) supports entrepreneurship and innovation within the Champlain community and surrounding Burlington area.

Between flight funding and cash prizes for professional competitions, the center grants students thousands of dollars each year to build their businesses. With office space in Vermont’s top co-working campus, the center provides consultative services to small businesses and those looking to get off the ground.

Learn More About the Center for Innovation & Entrepreneurship
female students meet in the sarah ramsey lab

Whether you own a business already or have a great idea for one, the CIE is ready to help you realize your goals. If you can articulate your idea, you’re an excellent candidate to get involved with the CIE.

We can help you connect with a network of professionals and experts who can give you perspective on building your business, marketing your product, and realizing your dream. You’ll receive valuable insight into the strategic, financial, legal, technical, operational, and managerial matters you’ll need to know.

President Hernandez with area business leaders

The Sarah Ramsey Startup Flight Fund
This fund provides students with up to $2,000 in funding per year to support a wide range of work such as market testing, prototyping products, or building websites.

Elevator Pitch Competition
Modeled after a national competition, students learn and polish their networking skills by presenting a “big idea” as succinctly and convincingly as possible.

Launch Champlain
Present your business idea succinctly to a panel of judges for a chance to win up to $3,000 in flight funding, just as you would to raise capital and attract both talent and supporters in the real world.


a marketing student shaking hands with a professional individual
I’m developing a juice company, and the Elevator Pitch gave me the opportunity to present it. I explained my company in the best way I could in 90 seconds. That helped boost my self-esteem and gave me more confidence.
Prince Awhaitey
Prince Awhaitey, Finance Major

Emergent Media Center

cardboard stand to hold up tablet, hand using tablet

Our award-winning Emergent Media Center (EMC) welcomes creative media challenges from businesses and nonprofits, providing hands-on learning for our students while solving problems for clients. Think of it as a consultative agency and creative lab.

Through a collaborative, iterative design cycle, the EMC has worked on projects including training simulations, mobile apps, physical prototypes, video, virtual reality, and other technological experiences.

Learn More About the Emergent Media Center
a student uses a drawing tablet to perform digital design

Champlain College’s Emergent Media Center is an interactive media studio where you can conceptualize, prototype, and produce a wide range of media to solve challenges brought to us by community partners.

The team works on everything from mobile apps to wearable technology. Students focus on applied research and experimentation working with a variety of emerging technologies, immersive media, and human-centered design processes to design creative solutions to client challenges.

screen shot of medical training through virtual and augmented reality technology

Because design and technology touch every industry, you’ll have the chance to work for clients large and small, for-profit and not-for-profit.

From designing an educational video game for the United Nations to VR trainings and simulations for world-class surgeons, our clients bring us some pretty unique challenges. Are you ready to help us solve them?

The Vermont Symphony Orchestra reached out to Champlain College because we knew their students had unique insights and excellent training in creating visual displays. …. I wanted to see Emergent Media Center students interpret the music we play with the Vermont Youth Orchestra and augment our audience’s experience by creating something unique to watch.
Elise Brunelle, Executive Director, Vermont Symphony Orchestra

More Inside Career-Focused Academics