Doing an internship abroad

Often, students want to enrich their academic studies with practical work experiences. Internships are great opportunities to do this. For instance, some study programmes allow an internship overseas as a substitute for an international trimester with courses at a university abroad. In other study programmes, students can work as an intern as part of their MSc thesis research.  

There are many opportunities for doing internships, also in the Global South. 

Unfortunately, TGD does not have the capacity to facilitate internships. However, we have prepared a set of questions, which help you get started with setting up your internship. 

In general, please remember that there is no “one-size-fits-all” way for doing this. It all depends on your interest & engagement, your skills, your time & schedule, your specific study requirements, and of course the internship possibilities. 

Below you will find a set of questions, which we consider helpful when preparing and planning your internship.

1.) Aims and expectations

What do you want to learn during this internship? What do you expect from (doing) this internship? What do you want to get out of it?

2.) Study fit and timing

How does the internship fit into your study program? What content/theoretical linkages can you identify? Have you found out from your Study Advisor or Education Office what the official requirements are?

What time period do you envision and how does this match with the planning of your other academic activities?

3.) Preparatory work

What have you already done to explore possibilities for doing an internship abroad? What did you find online? There are many organizations that facilitate practical internships so if this is what you are after, explore their options! If you want to pursue an internship consisting of academic research, these organizations are less suitable.

4.) Type of organization

In what type of organization are you interested to do you internship? Think, for example of: NGOs, research institutes, social enterprises, companies…

5.) Funding

Do you need external funding? Please study the NUFFIC Beursopener.nl and the options listed at TU/e STU at educationguide.tue.nl/broadening/exchange-programs-for-studying-abroad/preparation/grants-funds-and-scholarships/tue-funds-exchange/

We advise all students who would like to do an internship to thoroughly work on and answer these questions and follow the suggestions given – for example by writing down answers on one “A4 page”, before approaching staff members for help. 

Students are encouraged to look within their respective departments for staff who might be willing to support and coach them.