One of the best ways to gain experience before setting out on the job-hunting trail is to obtain a study abroad internship. A study abroad internship looks wonderful on a resume, but it will also allow you to experience so much more. You can choose from summer internships or year-long internships as well.
- Choose a Program-Before you begin the process of finding a study abroad internship, you'll need to choose an internship program. Some programs, such as Global Learning, offer students a chance to continue studying at universities abroad but also offer educational travel experiences as well. Other programs, such as The Scholar Ship, offer interns the possibility of working and voyaging to several continents over the course of a semester. You can choose study abroad internships that are geared toward a particular area, such as the arts or sciences. You can also choose programs by city, country, language and subject as well.
- Internet-For a wide selection of study abroad programs, you might want to begin with the Internet. There are many different websites dedicated to helping students find the ideal internship. Most of these websites offer broad databases that can be searched by anyone interested in a study abroad internship.
- Career Services Department-Don't overlook your local university as you begin searching for study abroad internship programs. They typically have an abundance of information, and may be able to offer you guidance as to the program best suited to your needs.
- Professors-In some cases, your professor may already have contacts with other universities abroad, and she may be able to help you get an internship that is suited to your field of study.
- Alumni Associations-Search for any alumni associations from your home university that might have branches in the city or country in which you are interested in visiting. Contact that association and ask for help in obtaining a study abroad internship.
- Application-Whether you use an Internet-based company or you find an internship through some other means, you'll need to pay close attention to the application requirements, including any deadlines. Most of these applications require an initial application fee and many also require a photo. You'll also need to submit copies of your official transcripts, too.
- References-Many study abroad programs have specific requirements regarding the academic status of an applicant. In some cases, you may still be accepted into a program even if your GPA is less than stellar, but you'll need to include references from your university professors. The program to which you are applying will typically give detailed instructions on how many references are needed, and these references may be mandatory regardless of your academic standing.
- University or College Statement-You may also be required to submit a university or college statement. This statement should probably be completed by at least one of the people who provided you with a reference or by the dean of your field of study. The statement should also indicate that your current university or college has given you approval to study abroad for a specified period of time.
- Scholarships-Finally, keep in mind that there may also be scholarship opportunities associated with the study abroad internship program. Again, you'll need to pay special attention to any deadlines that are associated with these scholarships.