Getting an internship abroad is a great way to learn more about a different culture, practice your language skills, and gain work experience in your field. You can apply for one year or for the summer—both are great options.
Here are some things to consider when applying for an internship abroad:
1. Make sure you’re eligible!
If you’re under 18, check with your school to see if they have a partner university in the country you want to go to.
Do they accept fresh graduates or only graduate school students? If you’re a graduate student, make sure that your school has a relationship with the university in your desired country.
Many schools and universities have free information sessions for students about their programs, especially for international students.
Check out the website of the program you want to see if they offer information sessions or workshops.
They are also a great place to ask questions you may have about the academic program, or get more details on your specific country of choice.
2. What are your goals?
What do you want to get out of this experience? Are you looking for professional development? Or are you looking for an immersion experience? What do you hope to learn from this experience?
These questions will help narrow down the right program for you. For STEM field students, look for programs that are part of an organization with a proven track record in the field.
Many of the higher-level programs at UCSC have been around for decades and have trained thousands of students.
You can also look at job placement rates or past students’ evaluations to see how much they enjoyed their program.
Photo by Keira Burton on Pexels.
3. How much time will I need?
Do I need a student visa sponsorship or help with flights and accommodation? If so, how much time does that take? It’s important to plan!
Will you spend the public holiday there or can you get time to come back home? Some program sponsors are flexible with public holidays, but others are not.
4. Where will I live?
Is there housing provided? What is the living situation like? Are there roommates? Is it shared housing or a private room? Is it furnished or unfurnished?
If you have specific requirements, look for programs that will meet them. You may have to apply for financial aid.
If you are looking at a certain type of school, try to figure out the average cost for tuition and other expenses for the academic year. You may get a student loan or work-study job to help with the expenses.
5. Do I need a passport?
Do I need a passport, or can I get one in time for my departure date? Make sure you apply for your passport well before your departure date!
A student internship work visa (SWV) is a non-immigrant visa issued to international students who wish to take part in an internship at a company in their home country. The term “internship” does not have to be a paid position.
It may be paid and may also be unpaid training, or unpaid volunteering work. It is possible to get this type of visa for academic or research purposes, or for practical training such as teaching English or IT skills.
6. Are there any additional costs associated with the program?
You’ll want to consider these when you are planning your budget. If there are any additional costs, plan ahead and save up for them.
Before committing to the program, it’s important to be honest with yourself and determine if your qualifications are up to par with what is required for the program.
7. What does the application process look like?
What kind of supporting documents do I need? How about the deadlines? It’s important to know what is required of you in order to apply.
We recommend contacting the partner university directly and asking them about their application process. This will help give you an idea of what they are looking for in an applicant.
8. Is there a language requirement?
Some partner universities have language requirements for students who want to study abroad with them. However, it also depends on the field of study.
If you want to study at a partner university in Japan, it is better to check with the Japanese government and Japanese universities if they have a language requirement.
For example, some colleges in Kyoto that offer courses in English do not accept students who do not speak English well.
Therefore, it is important to check what the requirements are for your chosen university and field of study.
Photo by William Choquette on Pexels.
9. Can I apply directly or do I need to go through my school first?
Make sure you know how this works before applying! Internship opportunities are often advertised through schools or colleges, so you’ll want to find out how they will be funded.
Most internship programmes are fully funded by the organizations that provide them. Some internships are only partially funded and will require a small amount of funding from your school.
Some internship abroad is fully funded by the organization, but you’ll need to apply directly to them. In other cases, you may apply through your school and get a grant for the funding of your internship.
If you’re looking for an internship abroad, there are a lot of things to consider! You’ll want to think about what your goals are, what you want to get out of the experience, and how much time you have.
The best way to do this is by contacting the partner university directly and asking them about their program. They will answer questions you have about their program and the application process.
Our Cudy counselors will help you with your search, but remember that every university and program is different. They are all very different in the things they offer, so don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as you can.