Trying to go abroad? Want a great position as well as ability to travel to a foreign country? Look no more because currently there are many opportunities for undergraduates to go abroad and intern at a great firms. The only difficult part of the search is weeding through the scams to find a genuine opportunity. Take it from me, I’ve searched long and hard to find that great chance to go abroad and do something different and creative with my summer.
I started out with the typical Google search “intern abroad” and “summer 2010 abroad” and these searches elicited many sites but most of them weren’t ones that caught my attention. As a typical college student who is strapped for cash, I was looking for an internship that would not cost me a couple thousands of dollars. Many study abroad trips are in the thousands and my perspective is that if someone is going to be working for a company and dedicating their time to the company, then paying a couple thousand is futile. Regardless, if interested some great sites are Intern Abroad, Transitions Abroad, Education First, and AIESEC. Plenty more can be found if one is willing to pay.
When I couldn’t find any opportunities that cost me, I thought that I should just throw in the towel and start looking for internships closer to home. That was when I was searching the UCAN website and found paid positions listed for working in Germany. My interested was once more ignited. I had half-heartedly checked the UCAN website after one of the Toppel Advisors referred me to it. I clicked on the banner on the homepage of CaneZone and it directed me to a variety of internships compiled from several universities all over the country. Not only is it a great site for internships abroad but also for internships within the United States. Other great sites listing international jobs are University of Denver Career Center, Public Policy and International Affairs Program, and JET Programme (Japanese Exchange and Teaching Programme).
When I talked to the Graduate Assistants at Toppel they directed me to other opportunities specifically for undergraduate students. For instance, teaching English abroad is very sought after. Many from foreign countries would love to learn English by a Native English speaker so that they can develop the correct pronunciation, phrases, and idioms specific to a Native English speaker. Some programs require that one is certified, usually TEFL certification, but there are some that do not require experience or certification. A good place to start the search would be Teach Abroad but be careful to weed through the positions because some you have to pay for and others require a TEFL degree.
These ideas are simply a jump-off point to help you get started on your search but much more can be found with thorough research. At the end of the day the work you put into finding these internships will pay off because it is a once in a lifetime experience and many whom I have talked to about their experiences would never change a thing about the internship. Good luck on your search!