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FAQ FOR APPLICANTS

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Beyond the obvious difference of studying in a classroom vs. showing up to work each day, an internship abroad can be much different than a study abroad experience. While most university programs host a group of students traveling abroad together, an international internship is a more independent experience. You will be responsible for showing up to work on time each day and navigating the challenges of living abroad. Of course, IAESTE U.S and the local IAESTE office are here to provide assistance and support throughout your time overseas. While the independence can be intimidating at first, many of our participants come away from the program amazed at how much they were able to grow, both personally and professionally. From establishing meaningful relationships with their co-workers to living abroad on their own, each person comes away from their internship with invaluable experiences and lifelong memories.
Interning abroad gives you the unique opportunity to explore a new culture, improve your language skills, and gain intercultural competence all while boosting your resume and gathering professional experience in your field. While many articles about the benefits of interning abroad can be found online, perhaps most important are the long-term effects on your career. Whether it’s standing out from the crowd while applying for your first entry-level position, or having the opportunity to transfer to another country mid-career because of your previous international experience, your IAESTE internship will only continue to pay off down the line.
Yes, but there are restrictions regarding which countries they can go to. Due to work permit eligibility and visa restrictions, recent graduates are only eligible for internships in certain countries. For a full list of countries where recent graduates are eligible, please contact the program team at iaeste@culturalvistas.org.
Only applicants at U.S. universities can apply for an international internship through IAESTE United States. For more information about IAESTE in your country, please visit iaeste.org/about-iaeste/member-countries
The online application can be accessed by clicking here. After you have provided some background information about yourself, we will email you a password granting access to our online application system. Upon submission of a completed application and all supporting documents, you will have access to the internship list and will be considered for nomination. The online application for summer and fall 2018 internship opportunities will open in September 2017. The application deadline will be in early December 2017. Please contact iaeste@culturalvistas.org if you are interested in a fall 2017 or spring 2018 internship opportunity.
The official language of the IAESTE program is English. Most positions do not require knowledge of an additional language. If knowledge of a second language is required, it will be listed in the position description.
The program fee includes a paid internship placement with an international host company or university, pre-departure orientation, work authorization and visa assistance, in-country support, re-entry webinar upon completion of the program, and access to the global alumni network. The participant is responsible for airfare and any costs associated with the visa process. Housing, meals, and transportation within the host country are generally covered by the stipend. Insurance can be purchased through Cultural Vistas (currently $55 per month).
Internships are available with all types of host employers: small startups, medium-sized companies, multinational corporations, universities, research institutions, and non-profit or government organizations. Here are a few examples of companies where we have had participants in the past: Hitachi, Ltd., Zurich University of Applied Sciences, Volvo, Flanders’ Mechatronics Technology Centre, RWTH Aachen, and Hong Kong Polytechnic University. This list is by no means comprehensive, but should give you a good idea of the types of companies IAESTE United States works with. To request a more complete list of previous host companies, please contact us at iaeste@culturalvistas.org. Please note that there is no guarantee that these companies will be hosting IAESTE interns this upcoming year.
Yes, all IAESTE internships are paid. Compensation generally covers at least the cost of living in the host city (housing, food, and transportation). Information will be listed on the internship description, along with estimates for cost of lodging and total cost of living per month in the host city.

The list of available internship opportunities will be published to all applicants in late January 2018, after the exchange has taken place at the IAESTE Annual Conference. Each applicant will have the opportunity to select up to five internship preferences. The IAESTE United States selection committee will review each applicant’s internship preferences and supporting documents. Phone interviews will be conducted with the top candidates for each position.

One nominee and one alternate will be selected for each position. Once a student has accepted his/her nomination, the application materials will be sent to the international host employer for a final review. Although each internship position has been reserved for a U.S. student (meaning that yours is the only application being considered), the final decision regarding acceptance belongs to the host employer. It generally takes between four to six weeks to receive a final response from the host employer.

Yes. All fees paid (other than the $75 non-refundable application fee) will be refunded if your application for an internship position is not accepted by the host employer. However, the IAESTE United States team does its best to find a suitable replacement position in such cases.
In many cases, yes. The visa process will vary by IAESTE host country, but is required in most countries. IAESTE United States and your IAESTE host country will assist with work authorizations and the visa application process. Ultimately, you will be responsible for obtaining the relevant paperwork, including an in-person visit to the host country’s embassy or consulate in the United States, in certain cases.
To ensure that all participants are covered throughout the duration of their internship, Cultural Vistas requires that all outbound IAESTE participants are covered by either a university administered policy or our HTH Worldwide insurance policy. Cultural Vistas’ HTH Worldwide policy costs $55 per month.
The duration of the internship is listed on the internship description. While many of our internships take place for 8-12 weeks during the summer, semester and year-long opportunities are also available.
The host IAESTE office will be responsible for assisting you with local accommodations unless otherwise specified in the internship description. In general, students live in either university housing or in a shared apartment with other international interns. You are, however, responsible for accurately communicating your arrival and departure dates with IAESTE United States and your host country. You will also be responsible for making payments for your housing from your stipend.
IAESTE United States encourages you to explore as much as possible during your time abroad. However, you should keep in mind that unlike a study abroad experience, you are an employee at a company. Therefore, you are expected to attend work according to the expectations of your employer.
Credit is given at the discretion of each respective college or university. Be sure to speak with a coordinator at your school before beginning the internship to ensure all steps are taken for you to receive credit. Cultural Vistas is able to provide a letter certifying participation in the program, should the university request.
Estimated tax deductions from your gross income are listed on each internship description, and vary by country. In many cases, participants may be eligible for a partial refund of taxes paid. Cultural Vistas suggests that you ask your employer’s human resources department for any documentation regarding income received prior to leaving your host country, as this information will be helpful when filing your U.S. taxes. Unfortunately, due to legal issues, Cultural Vistas cannot offer tax assistance to its participants.
International students studying in the U.S. are eligible for IAESTE, as long as they are enrolled at a U.S. university for the duration of their internship program.
In certain cases it is possible to extend your IAESTE internship if both you and the host company agree to the extension. The IAESTE national office in your host country should be contacted as soon as a decision regarding the extension is reached. While previous IAESTE interns have received full-time job offers from their host employer, this should not be an expectation. A number of factors including the host company’s needs, visa regulations, your performance, and others play a role in whether a full-time job might be an option.

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