The Office of Study Abroad (OSA) Young Professionals Internship Program
Michigan State University is one of the major players in the national study abroad success story. With more than 275 programs in over 60 countries and on all continents (including Antarctica), MSU has led the nation in study abroad participation among public universities in the United States for six years in a row. MSU's long-standing commitment to international education provides the foundation for its distinct study abroad program that includes a large catalog of discipline-specific as well as multi- and interdisciplinary options; an increasing number of internships; community engagement opportunities; and programs offering student research projects. In addition, our focus on high quality programs, expected learning outcomes, engagement in institutional research initiatives, and unusually high involvement by faculty across the spectrum of academic disciplines, makes study abroad at MSU a national leader.
Study abroad at MSU...
- is a key building block in MSU's long-standing commitment to international education
- is the expected norm. At MSU, it's not a question of IF students study abroad, but WHEN they do so.
- offers students a wide variety of program options in terms of major, academic term, foreign language skill, program duration, and class standing, including options for graduate students.
- features unique Freshman Seminars Abroad for admitted high school graduates.
- works with students prior to departure to enable them to gain the maximum benefit from their study abroad experience and collaborates with career services to help them articulate for employers the knowledge and skills gained on study abroad.
- offers numerous credit-bearing international internship and community engagement opportunities.
- works with participating colleges on fully integrating study abroad into academic curricula.
- collaborates with campus partners to make programs academically, financially, and physically accessible.
- has a risk management practices that serve as a national benchmark.
We are dedicated to providing all MSU students with high quality international academic opportunities that allow them to develop knowledge and skills needed to become productive and successful members of the global community. In partnership with MSU colleges, departments, support units, faculty, and staff, we seek to increase awareness of education abroad opportunities, to promote intercultural learning, and to advocate for diversity in participants and programs.
The OSA Internship Program provides structured opportunities for MSU undergraduate and graduate students (as well as non-MSU graduate students) to learn the field of study abroad hands-on from a cadre of dedicated professionals, many of whom serve as national leaders in their area of expertise. OSA internships provide exposure to all functions of a high-performing study abroad office while allowing interns to focus on one of (currently) three areas: risk management, communications, and research & scholarship. Internships typically are one semester in length (fall, spring, or summer), though in individual cases arrangements can be made for opportunities spanning more than one semester. Proposals submitted by graduate students for full-time internships will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
A professional internship can be a win-win arrangement for the intern and the sponsoring office. They add value to students' education, expose them to the realities, practices and ethos of a profession, and can make them more competitive in the labor market. According to Dr. Philip Gardner, Director of MSU's Collegiate Employment Research Institute, "internships are the new entry-level jobs. Today's employers expect a lot more now from first-time hires than they used to." The sponsoring office, in turn, benefits from sharing its expertise with young professionals and by adding their enthusiasm and fresh perspective to its team.
What OSA Expects of Interns
- Interns will conduct themselves professionally at all times and be mindful of representing OSA in their role.
- Interns will provide their semester schedule to their OSA supervisor before the start of each semester so work hours can be arranged. They will inform their supervisor ahead of time of any needed deviations from this schedule.
- Interns will not provide information to students, parents, and MSU faculty and staff unless they are one-hundred percent certain of the accuracy of such information.
- Interns will sign a confidentiality statement regarding access to privileged information.
- Interns will be willing to pitch in for a variety of office functions, as needed.
- Interns will be committed to their work and will be proactive in directing their own learning.
What Interns Can Expect of OSA
- Over the course of their internship,
- interns can become familiar with the core functions of an education abroad office.
- interns can gain in-depth knowledge about and training in one of the advertised function areas.
- Interns will have a structure of training that will involve a variety of OSA staff.
- The internship supervisor sets aside time for regular check-in meetings with the intern.
- Interns will have opportunity to participate in staff and other kinds of meetings, as appropriate.
- Interns will be considered part of the OSA team and be treated as professional colleagues.
- OSA staff understand that interns might interrupt them on occasion when the intern is uncertain of how to proceed.
- Interns wishing to attend NAFSA conferences may submit proposals outlining their objectives for attendance and, pending a review of their proposal and budget realities, may be funded as follows:
- Regional conference: conference registration, cost or one pre-conference workshop, plus per diem.
- National conference: conference registration.