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Type of Internship

Via Educations : The Ultimate Guide to Internships Abroad

Internships are valuable opportunities to gain experience, professional insight, and practical skills for the workplace. Many students do not realize they can apply for internships abroad, but as long as you have the time to spare with your courses, there’s no reason not to!

What will you get from an international internship?

  • Practical, hands-on experience
  • Enhanced resume or CV
  • Networking opportunities
  • Experienced mentors in your field
  • University credit or stipend (in some cases)

Oftentimes, internships can also directly lead to employment opportunities that you may not have known existed before. If the internship provider doesn’t have an open position for you, they can usually point you in the right direction and provide you with a great recommendation. Otherwise, with an international internship on your resume, employers around the world impressed and eager to book you for an interview.

Aside from the professional opportunities, an internship abroad can provide valuable insight into the workplace culture and customs of the country in which you are living and studying. For example, there is a huge difference between a workplace in Sweden compared to the United States, and you’ll only be able to experience them firsthand if you join the workforce yourself! After your internship is complete, you will then have a much better sense of the values and work ethic expected of employees in your host country.

Are you excited to start an internship abroad yet? First, there’s still some things to consider! Read on to get a better understanding of all the internships available to you as an international student studying abroad and how they work.

Types of internships Abroad

There are many different types of internships available for you to choose from depending on your area of study or personal interests.


Universities and colleges work collaboratively with companies to offer students internships for academic credits. These credits provide you with hands-on experience while fulfilling your academic requirements. Internships for credits are a great way to accomplish two goals at once.

Academic internships can be arranged through your academic adviser and may last 1-2 semesters in duration. To receive credit, students may be asked to keep a journal, write an essay, or make a presentation about the experience.


Summer internship programs are normally shorter in duration and can last from a few weeks to an entire summer. These internships provide academic credits or experience in your field.

Most commonly, summer internships are arranged with your school, but independent internship opportunities can be found in fields such as tourism and hospitality.

There are many types of summer internships offered to students. You may choose from paid summer internship programs, high school summer internships, or internships based on location.


Non-profit internships are normally for organizations such as charities, schools, government agencies, religious organizations, or hospitals. The aim of non-profit internships is to provide a public service for the community. Internships at non-profit organizations are typically unpaid but look impressive on a resume or CV.


With this unique type of internship, you work for an organized community organization such as a library, a shelter, or a community center. Service learning programs are structured in a three-step process which require participants to:

  • Define the objectives and goals of the project
  • Perform the service work
  • Present their experiences in a presentation or a paper

Examples of service learning projects could be taking part in a reading assistance program at a library, working with veterinarians at an animal shelter, or designing a playground at a community center. Through service learning, you receive transferable skills while benefiting the community.


Job shadowing is also known as an “externship” and is similar to an internship but shorter, only lasting from a few days to several weeks. Job shadowing is used as an activity for high school or university students to explore different career options.

Students taking part in job shadowing will spend time observing their mentor while working together with other professionals. Job shadowing is a great way to gain insight and experience while helping you decide the direction of your career.

Whichever type of internship you choose, you’ll have the chance to transfer your academic knowledge to real life experience.

Paid vs. Unpaid Internships Abroad

Depending on the company or the organization, compensation may be offered. Internships without financial benefits still offer many rewards to candidates.


Paid internships provide you with the opportunity to gain experience while getting paid to work! Companies offering paid internships are usually in the private sector.

Paid internships are offered in specific fields such as engineering, law, or IT internships. Therefore, a great way to gain the practical experience you need to find a job in your industry after you graduate is to find an internship within your chosen field. That way you get the most out of your international internship!

For obvious reasons, paid internships are the most sought after and companies often use them to recruit new employees. Compensation paid during these internships is not comparable to a full-time salary but is similar to a stipend to cover basic living or traveling expenses. This also means that getting accepted for the internship is more competitive.

Therefore, it’s important to demonstrate to the company that you’re the best candidate for the position. Highlight the fact that you are studying abroad and carry with you valuable critical thinking, problem solving, and cross-cultural communication skills. In today’s globalized world, language skills are in a particularly high demand, so don’t forget to mention any language you speak as well!


Unpaid internships are a great way for students who do not have permission to work in their host country to still gain the work experience necessary to successfully find a job after graduation. Before moving abroad, students should consult with the government agency who approved their visa to see which work opportunities they can take part in while living and studying abroad.

Although you are not compensated financially for your time, you can reap many other benefits, such as the experience you can put on a resume. Experience aside, you can also expect to make a lot of friends and professional contacts that you will have long after your study abroad experience is over. This is especially important considering many students begin their studies knowing no one.

Although your time is unpaid, it also means your schedule is often more flexible. This is a great for students studying abroad because it gives you the flexibility to gain experience at their international internship, attend lectures, and still enjoy their new city with all of their new friends they’ve met.


Work placements are normally shorter than internships. These types of placements are offered to those still enrolled in school. Work placements are usually part of your program or can be completed in place of a course.

In comparison, internships normally are longer, typically lasting up to a year. Internships are not only completed by students but are also for recent graduates and those looking to change careers.

Overall, paid internship, unpaid internships, and work placements allow you to apply your academic knowledge in the workplace. This experience undoubtedly gives you an advantage when entering the job market and building your resume.

Applying for an Internship Abroad

Applying for internships requires some time and patience, but you can increase your chance of finding the right internship abroad faster if you know what to expect. Preparation is key, so make sure you have everything you need to make a great first impression. It starts with a professional CV or resume and a well-written cover letter. Then once you score the interview, it’s just up to you to impress employers with all the skills, knowledge, and experience you can bring to the internship.

Start with the following checklist to put yourself on track to finding your ideal international internship:

  • Perfect your resume. Make it clear and avoid errors in formatting, grammar, and typos.
  • Use your network–find internships by asking professors, friends, and family for professional contacts.
  • Gather documentation for internship applications, including transcripts and possibly letters of recommendation.
  • Ask your professional contacts if you can put them down as a reference. Or, ask professors for recommendations.
  • Have someone you trust go over all your documentation to check for mistakes and give feedback.

Don’t forget, the earlier you begin searching for internships, the better!


When applying for an internship, take time to clean up your resume or CV. Avoid lengthy resumes and try to make it easy to read. Ask a mentor or teacher to read over it for suggestions and to double check for errors.

You can start by making sure your resume is organized in clear, logical sections so that employers can quickly and easily see your education and experience. Don’t forget to make sure all the information is up-to-date as well. Be sure to include your most recent job experience and which program you are attending at university. It doesn’t hurt to quickly check to see that all your contact information is accurate too.

Since you’re studying abroad, it’s great to highlight the skills and knowledge that studying abroad teaches you to set yourself apart from the rest of the candidates. These are skills that can’t be taught in the classroom, only through first-hand experience, making them valuable to succeeding at your international internship. However, it’s easy for this particular type of experience to get looked over if it’s not done properly on the resume.

To increase your chance of scoring the interview to do an internship abroad, consider the following tips when putting study abroad on your resume:

  • Highlight any languages you have learned during your experience.
  • Include any international social organizations you joined or ran
  • Demonstrate the skills you learned in and outside the classroom while studying abroad

You can also put study abroad on a resume or CV for making your study experience speak for itself!


Cover letters for internships are a one page document which introduce yourself and highlights why you are the best candidate for the position. Just like a job application, internships require a cover letter attached with your application.

The 3 common types of cover letters are:

  • Standard cover letter
  • Referral cover letter
  • Letter of interest

A standard cover letter demonstrates your ability to effectively communicate why you are qualified for the position. You should mention the position you are applying for and how your skill set will benefit the company.

The second type of cover letter is known as a referral letter. This type of cover letter is used when someone has referred you to the position. When writing a referral letter, you should mention the person who referred you to the company right away. Referral letters are a great introduction to the company, and may help improve your chances of being noticed in the application process.

The third type of letter is called a letter of interest. This is written when there is not a specific position advertised but you write to express your interest in the company.

Keep in mind that cover letters are the first thing an employer will read, so invest time in crafting the best letter possible!


A transcript is a record of your academic grades and achievements and is one of the most common components of applications for internships. There are two types of transcripts: official and unofficial.

Official transcripts are issued directly from the university and are sealed and delivered directly to the recipient. Official transcripts may take anywhere from 4-8 weeks to arrive, so make sure to order them in advance so it has time to arrive. This type of transcript also usually requires a small fee for the copy.

Unofficial transcripts can usually be printed directly from your the university website. This type of transcript is not issued or sealed by the school and are not always accepted for applications.

Make sure you carefully read which type of transcripts are required for your application and plan enough time for delivery to meet the application deadline.


Recommendation letters are written by a third person and highlight your skills or academic merits. The letter should address your professional strengths as well as your strengths in character. The best people to ask for recommendation letters are teachers, employers, or organizations you have been involved with.

Letters of recommendation for internships are an important aspect of the application process so give the writer plenty of time to prepare. We recommend asking at least 3-4 months in advance.

In conclusion, internship applications can require many types of documents. You should make sure you read each application’s guidelines very carefully and that you allow yourself adequate time to gather everything you need to apply.

Via The Balance Careers : Types of Internships

Internships provide real-world experience to those looking to explore or gain the relevant knowledge and skills required to enter into a particular career field. Internships are relatively short-term in nature with the primary focus on getting some on the job training and taking what’s learned in the classroom and applying it to the real world.

01 Paid Internships

Paid internships exist primarily in the private sector or in large organizations that have the money to pay students to learn while they work. Given a choice of paid or unpaid internship, paid internships are definitely the internships of choice.

More and more organizations are recognizing the value of internship programs and the enormous benefit they play in the recruitment process. As these organizations work to train interns, they are also scrutinizing them on all fronts to evaluate their potential as potential future full-time employees. For this reason, companies that can afford to pay their interns will usually make a decision to go ahead and do so.

02 Internships for Credit

Internships for credit require that the experience is strongly related to an academic discipline to be deemed “credit-worthy”. The main question is determining the value of the internship experience in a higher education context. Internships that are primarily clerical or mechanical do not qualify for academic credit.

Students looking to do an internship for credit usually need to have an academic sponsor to oversee and set criteria for the internship. To meet the academic component of the internship, students may be required to complete a journal, essay, or presentation during or immediately after the internship to illustrate the knowledge and skills they learned over the course of the semester.

03 Nonprofit Internships

Doing an internship for a nonprofit organization is usually quite different than working in an organization for profit. In a nonprofit organization, there are no stockholders and no one shares in the annual profits or losses that are determined by the organization each year. Nonprofit organizations include charities, universities, government agencies, religious organizations, and some hospitals.

Since the purpose of these organizations is not to make money, instead they focus more on providing a service. Interns generally do not get paid when interning at a nonprofit. Completing an internship in a nonprofit organization provides some very useful skills required by employers when seeking to hire entry-level employees in this field.

04 Summer Internships

Summer internships are usually eight to twelve weeks long and can be full or part-time. More students do internships during the summer than during any other time of the year. These short-term experiences provide a real insight into what it’s actually like working in a particular job or career field. There’s ample time to get into a regular work routine and gain valuable knowledge and skills.

Summer internships can be completed for credit but they don’t have to be. Getting credit during the summer can be helpful since it can lighten a student’s course load during fall or spring semester, but the downside is that most colleges require tuition in order for students to receive credit.

05 Service Learning

Although there are different perspectives on what constitutes services learning, there are several specific criteria that must be met for an experience to be considered a service learning experience. Service learning requires a combination of meeting specific learning objectives by completing some type of community service work.

It is different from other forms of experiential education in that it requires that the recipient and the provider of the service both benefit in some way and are changed equally by the experience. These are very structured programs that require self-reflection and self-discovery along with gaining the specific values, skills, and knowledge required for success in the field.

06 Co-Operative Education

The main difference between an internship and a co-op experience is the length of time. While internships generally last anywhere’s from a few weeks to several months, co-op’s normally last one or more years. Usually, students will attend classes and work on their co-op simultaneously or they may do their co-op during winter and/or summer breaks.

Co-ops and internships are both excellent ways for students to gain valuable knowledge and skills in their field of interest, plus they offer an opportunity to network with professionals already working in the field.

07 Externship

Externships are very similar to internships but only of a much shorter duration. Another common name for externship is job shadowing. Although these opportunities may only consist of one day to several weeks, they tend to offer participants a bird’s eye view of what it’s actually like working in a particular career field as well as providing some professional contacts for future networking.

Via The Louisville Cardinal : Are unpaid internships worth the costs?

As junior and senior year rolls around, many students search for an internship. Whether it’s for school credit, trying to make job connections or to learn more about their field, internships are a popular option for upcoming graduates.

But are they worth it?

An unpaid internship is going to cost paychecks and valuable time. Working part-time at an unpaid internship is about 15-20 hours a week that could be devoted to a paid job. Consider everything needed keep an internship: gas to the office, parking fees and tuition for college credit for the internship.

Most people would like to be paid for their work, but many smaller companies can’t afford to pay interns. That leaves unpaid internships as a way to give students real-world experience. U of L Junior Austin Bryant said having a job during an unpaid internship is important.

“It’ll make your life so much more stressful if you’re constantly worrying about how to pay for lunch on your lunch break,” Bryant said. “Even if you only work a few hours a week for a paycheck, it can make a big difference.”

It is important to note internships do not always lead to jobs. They can be a helpful stepping stone if done properly, but many students accept an internship offer hoping to move into the company.

While you’re not guaranteed a job, an unpaid internship might make you even less appealing to other companies.

The National Association of Colleges and Employers surveyed more than 9,000 seniors in 2013 to see if they had received a job offer from their internship. They found 63 percent of students with a paid internship had received at least one job offer. Only 37 percent of students who were unpaid interns could say the same, yet 38.8 percent of students who never interned still received a job offer.

It’s important to understand that having an unpaid internship is a privilege. It’s a use of time and money that many students cannot afford. Remember, your time and integrity are important if you take an unpaid internship.

“Always remember that your time is valuable. Set boundaries early on in the internship and don’t let them take advantage of you,” senior Emily Baskett said. “If you state that you’ll be working 15 hours a week, you are under no obligation to work more than that. Stand up for yourself and the management will respect you in return.”

If you can dedicate your time to a non-paying gig, you can get a lot of experience from it. Just keep in mind the pros and cons of giving your time up for free.

Via Forbes : Upgrade Your Interns: Keys To Making An Internship Program Valuable

With summer in the rearview mirror, the noise level in the office has gone down a couple notches, and the kitchen shelves aren’t quite as bare. Without context, that might seem like a good thing, but we’re actually pretty torn up about it. Because it means our interns have left. Even though they were with us for mere months, they quickly became just as much a part of our culture as any full-time employee—and their energy and enthusiasm is something we’re having a tough time learning to live without.

Interns arrive bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, ready to tackle the world as they embark upon what is for many their first real job. Unfortunately, not all internships are created equal. While everyone jokes about how interns are for paper shredding and coffee runs, sometimes those jokes are far too close to the truth. Take a look at these intern horror stories:

Keyera interned with a startup in hopes of gaining experience in public relations. She ended up spending all her time calling and emailing organizations asking for donations and grant money. “It turned out the head of this startup was looking for free labor instead of the opportunity to mentor college students to gain experience.”

Adam accepted an internship at a local game development startup at the end of his undergraduate degree. “I was promoted to lead designer of the project at the end of the first week, and it was then that I realized that I knew more about game development than the person who was supposed to be mentoring me.”

Ron had an accounting internship that started out full of valuable experience. However, after the busy tax season, his manager ran out of work for him and assigned Ron to file scanning. Over the next four months, he scanned close to 20,000 pages. “Ever since that summer, every time I hear a machine scan a document, I run away.”

And finally Jesse, whose internship with a local hospital’s ophthalmology department sadly proved that sometimes stereotypes are 100% spot on. Jesse spent every single day shredding papers, never once interacting with the doctor or patients. “I would sit in the optometrist’s office and shred using a cheap shredder that could only take a couple of pages at a time. After about 15 minutes of use, it would heat up and stop shredding, so I would have to wait around for it to cool down.”

So obviously some internships are broken. Interns face unavailable managers, no formal training, busy work or a lack of work altogether, and no clear goals. They finish the summer with no useful skills, no relevant experience, no meaningful relationships, and deflated enthusiasm.

Six years ago, we hired our first intern at Lucid, and we knew we wanted our program to be different. Interns aren’t for coffee runs, and you can give them real-world learning experience while simultaneously creating value for your company. We want our interns to feel immersed in the culture, working on real projects that produce real impact. We want them to stay bright-eyed and bushy-tailed. Here’s how we try and do it.

Trust them with hard things.

When our VP of engineering Brian Pugh first meets with potential interns, he explains our internship philosophy. “An internship with most companies, even hot tech companies like Google and Microsoft, means working on a project that may never see the light of day. At Lucid, within 3-4 weeks, interns will have worked on code that is out in our production system being used by millions of users. There are bug fixes or new features in the product that interns can point to as something they personally worked on.”

We don’t dream up separate “intern projects” that are presented at the conclusion of the summer. Instead, we place our interns on a team and give them work that integrates directly with the overall team objectives. For example, engineering interns are placed on an existing scrum team and treated like any other team member, diving headfirst into the issues that team is responsible for and working on real features that become the next big things in our product. In fact, many employees find it difficult to distinguish between full-time hires and interns, only realizing when the interns disappear come September. Brian says, “I know it has been successful summer when a co-worker says to me at the end of the summer, ‘He/she is back in school? I didn’t realize he/she was an intern!'”

Last summer, our graphic design intern helped kick off Flowchart Fridays, a huge campaign that is still running today and that has received numerous local and national awards. During this intern’s first couple weeks at Lucid, she designed the very first flowcharts for the campaign. They have hundreds of thousands of page views to date and remain some of the most viewed in the campaign. This campaign has been crucial in allowing us to reach new audiences with our software.

Two of our marketing interns built hundreds of diagram templates that customers can actually use. Each template was published as an individual page, and they have helped us rank for dozens and dozens of valuable keywords.
The feedback we hear most often from our interns is how much they appreciate being given this real experience rather than fake projects that fade into oblivion once they leave. We truly value the work our interns do, and we make sure they are well aware of that. Frankly, we are baffled that so many companies waste interns’ time and talent on unimportant projects.

Give the interns a chance. See what they can do. It’s likely they will surprise you.

Treat them like the real thing.

How, you might ask, do I comfortably pass the reigns on a real project to an intern who barely looks 14? I realize that can be a bit disconcerting. But if you’ve hired the best of the best, they are ready to handle it.

Hiring the right interns might not seem as important as hiring for full-time positions. It’s just a summer, right? But you can’t treat internships like short-term relationships. In fact, we hold our interns to the same high bar as we do our regular hires. We are looking for the cream of the crop, and we put our intern candidates through the same rigorous interviewing process as we do our normal candidates. For example, engineering interns take the same programming test, are asked the same algorithm, language, modeling, and behavioral questions, and are held to the same high GPA standard as full-time hires.

So yes, the recruiting and the hiring can be a long process when you have such a high bar. But the process is a smart long-term investment. We’re building a pipeline of qualified candidates, and we hire our interns with the intention of offering full-time positions if the internship goes well. You can put them through the ringer now, or you can do it later.

In addition, internship programs are an easy way to build goodwill for your company and expand your footprint. Interns talk—they are going to tell others about their experience (and keep in mind that they’re going to do so whether it’s good or bad). Our interns have become Lucid ambassadors, representing the company at career fairs and generally raising awareness about our company among university students.

Pair them up.

Don’t send your interns on a wild goose chase. Set them up for success and make sure they have access to the people who will help them achieve that. In addition to the manager they report to, all interns are assigned a mentor from day one.

Mentorships offer a chance for more informal relationships that facilitate open communication. Mentors help interns feel comfortable and quickly get up to speed. In doing so, interns are able to start contributing to meaningful projects right away—the best way to learn is by getting their hands dirty. On our engineering team, mentors often pair program with interns, always review interns’ code changes, and help interns learn the intricacies of the system. We have a graphic design intern who started working with her mentor on a big summer campaign the day after she started.

Immerse them in the day-to-day.

Key to making an internship valuable is ensuring interns are immersed in the culture. And the best way to make sure that happens is to integrate them in existing teams from the get-go. That way, they are living the culture every day rather than listening to you talk about it.

We bring all of our interns on our company retreat at the beginning of the summer. That means our retreat count hit nearly 300 this year. But it’s worth it. The experience allows them to feel a part of the company and to meet people they don’t normally interact with. The informal setting fosters relationship building within and across teams and can put even the most nervous interns at ease.

Every summer, we also hold a Hackathon where employees are invited to come up with ideas for new product features, join a team and create something amazing in just a few days. Many hackathon projects become key features in the products. Interns are strongly encouraged to join (or form) a team and participate. Last year, an intern was on the winning team that came up with Feature Find, which was released to the production system and had a significant impact to our business. This year, an intern was part of a team that spent three days converting 600,000 lines of JavaScript to TypeScript, working off of very little sleep and averaging one file per minute for 48 hours straight. When asked why he joined such an ambitious project, the intern said, “We chose this project because we are absolutely crazy and we don’t know when to call it quits on a joke.”

We also want our interns to feel comfortable with one another and to have that network as another support system. In addition to the company-wide events, we have intern-only activities throughout the summer, such as baseball games, BBQs, and hikes.

So give your interns a shot. Find the golden ones and put them to work on things that really matter and produce value for themselves and your company. Let them think they can tackle the world—and please don’t squash their enthusiasm with coffee runs.

via BostonglobeAre you lost when it comes to finding an internship?

For those of you panicking about not having a summer internship yet, relax! You have time to find one. Finding an internship can be divided into these steps: figuring out what type of placement is best for you, the application process, and the interview process.

Create a quick list of things that are important to you. Do you need to get paid? Do you want to see a new city? Do you want to work in a group or on your own? How important is prestige to you? How much free time do you want to have? What skills do you want to learn, and want do you want your day-to-day work life to look like?

These questions are much more important than the ones you might first think of: What’s going to look good on my resume? What career do I want to have?

Here’s why. Down the road, most employers will care less about the specific internships you had than the fact that you worked steadily. Many creative or unusual internships in different fields are a positive. If you are a rising senior in college or a graduate student, you may have to worry much more about whether your internship might lead to a job, but for high schoolers and early college students, try something you might not be used to. Focusing on what skills you want to learn (research, writing, leadership, etc.) will be better for you in the long run than what job you learn them in.

Use your college’s resources and Google to find jobs that let you do those things. There are, in general, three types of internships: government (it might be a bit late for those), the private sector, and nonprofits. List companies that seem cool, even if they are out of your reach for an internship, and nonprofits in areas that interest you. Interested in journalism? Create a list of journalists you admire and the companies they work for. Want to work with kids in Africa? Google “paid internships in Africa.”

Think out of the box. Maybe you can’t work with Doctors Without Borders, but scoring an internship as a summer analyst at Goldman Sachs in the Middle East may give you free time to also travel and volunteer.

Reach out to people who have the jobs you want and ask them how they got there. This is why the previous step is so important: You have to know what you are talking about when you talk to them. Don’t be afraid to reach out to big shots; it’s remarkably easy to contact people who are successful in their fields. Before I became a columnist, I talked to big names in the news media, the editors of major newspapers, and public figures who wrote weekly columns. As long as you are asking for information and not a job, they’ll help you out.

Want to work at Apple? Look on LinkedIn for a manager at Apple and ask them for 15 minutes of their time. They’ll tell you what types of internships will help you get the skills you need to be a competitive applicant — and many will even connect you to friends looking for interns, if they can.

Start applying for jobs. Once you have a list of places to look at and have a few mentors who can advise you, apply. Clean up your resume, write personalized cover-letters to every job, and follow up. Don’t miss deadlines by including due dates and “E-mail [contact] at [company]” in your calendar.

If you are rejected, always thank them for their time and ask if they have advice on how to make yourself more competitive. Ninety percent of the time, you won’t get a response, but the few times you do, you will get great advice on how to improve your resume.

Prepare for the interviews. When interviewing and in your application, explain why this job is so important to you and will add value to your career goals and life plans. This is why the first step was so important. If done right, you will be very persuasive about the skills, contacts, and summer experience you hope to gain from this job in particular, and you will care about more than just the resume boost. Always show interest in the ethics, values, and goals of the institution.

Treat the interview more like meeting a mentor than an interview. Answer questions they have about you clearly and concisely. Figure out three things you want to share about yourself that are tied to what the company looks for and make sure you convey them. Take the time to ask about how they got their jobs, what internships they had, and advice they have for their career. If you feel up to it, end the interview by asking, “If there is anything I can clarify about my resume or my experiences that would make me a better candidate, what would they be?” It’s a risky question, but usually interviewers will be honest and you have one final opportunity to convince them you have the skills for the job.