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Berkeley Global Internships Policies

< Berkeley Global Internships

While some countries and locations may have limited options, BSA staff will work with you to find the best arrangement within the parameters of each location or to find a program location that will fit your needs

Eligibility Cost
Application Payment
Waitlist Financial Aid
Admission and Confirmation Dismissal from Program
Electronic Signature Withdrawal, Cancellation, and Refund
Program Dates and Components Appeals
Registration Program Cancellation
Course Credits Airline Tickets
Program Components Health Insurance
Placement Process Health and Wellness
Program Preparation Vaccinations
Academic and Other Accommodations Further Information




The Global Internships program is open to UC Berkeley students and students from other colleges and universities. To be eligible, you must have completed at least one year of college by the start of the program, have at least a 2.0 GPA (please note: though admission to the program only requires a 2.0 GPA, supervisors in certain internship sectors, such as STEM, may require higher GPA’s), and be at least 18 years old at the time of application. Applicants to the Global Internships program must either be currently enrolled in an undergraduate degree program or have graduated within the last 12 months. You may not be on academic probation or under censure for student misconduct at any point from application review to the end of your program. There may be additional requirements or prerequisites for the specific program you select; please check the location-specific page for details. You may only apply to one Global Internships or Summer Abroad program per summer.

International students are generally not eligible for the internship options located in the United States unless you have completed one year of full-time study at a college in the United States in the year immediately preceding your internship, are authorized for F-1 Curricular Practical Training or J-1 Academic Training under federal visa regulations and have a valid visa for the extent of the program.

Applications are reviewed by Berkeley Study Abroad to ensure compliance with University policies and individual program requirements. Berkeley Study Abroad reserves the right to void the admission of any student who is discovered not to meet the above requirements after being admitted.

Please note: High school students are not eligible to apply. Students enrolled in graduate, or professional programs are only eligible to apply to the San Francisco Bay Area program.




Step One: Meet with an adviser to discuss which program is an appropriate fit for you (this step is a mandatory prerequisite for applicants to Tokyo, Los Angeles, and San Francisco Bay Area program. Please read the corresponding application process for more information about these locations’ unique application process).

Step Two: Submit an online application.

The online Global Internships application requires:

1. A 200 - 500 statement of interest that focuses on a) What do you hope to gain through your internship experience and how does this program fit into your academic plans, future education and/or career goals? b) What type of internship you are looking for (Please do not request a specific employer, but rather indicate the kind of work and the type of skills you would like to gain).
2. A 250-word response to the following question: Studying abroad can be a challenging experience that pushes you outside of your comfort zone. What challenges do you foresee for yourself? How will you prepare for these challenges abroad?
3. A 250-word response to the following question: “What does being a cultural ambassador mean to you? How do you plan to represent yourself and Berkeley in your time abroad?”
4. A copy of your most recent college transcript (unofficial or official). Transcripts must have your name, the name of your college, courses in progress, and current GPA. A screenshot of your CalCentral account is acceptable.
5. A copy of your resume formatted to the specific location you are applying to. See resume instructions and templates for more information.
6. Signed Student Agreement
7. Signed Waiver of Liability
8. A $400 deposit. If accepted to the program, the $400 deposit is non-refundable and will be applied towards your program fee. If you are waitlisted or denied admission to the program, your deposit will be refunded. If you request to withdraw your application prior to an admission decision being issued or cancel your participation after being accepted to the program, the deposit remains non-refundable
Please note that for continuing UC Berkeley students, the deposit will be charged to your CalCentral account at the time you apply. Financial aid eligible students can wait until their summer aid is disbursed to pay the deposit but remain responsible for the full deposit if they withdraw their application before an application decision is issued, or withdraw their participation from the program after acceptance. Any payments made to CalCentral will be applied towards outstanding fees prior to being applied to the deposit.
  • *Please note, there may be additional requirements or prerequisites for the specific program you select; please check the location-specific web page for details.
  • *Spring 2020 Graduating UC Berkeley Students: If you are a UC Berkeley student who is currently scheduled to graduate at the end of Spring 2020, you must apply as a visiting student. According to University policy, you will no longer be considered a UC Berkeley student for the Summer term once you have graduated. Please do not attempt to apply as a UC Berkeley student, as this will have negative implications on access to your UC Berkeley accounts. As a visiting student, you will be charged with visiting student tuition and be ineligible for any UC Berkeley Financial Aid.

    If you would like to be considered a UC Berkeley student for Summer 2020,  please talk to your college advisor about switching your expected graduation date from Spring 2020 to  Summer before continuing with this application. If you are eligible for aid, please also speak to Financial Aid about the financial implications of this decision.

    UC Berkeley students: The $400 deposit will be charged to your CalCentral account at the time you apply. Financial aid eligible students can wait until their summer aid is disbursed to pay the deposit but remain responsible for the full deposit if they withdraw their application before an application decision is issued, or withdraw their participation from the program after acceptance. Any payments made to CalCentral will be applied towards outstanding fees prior to being applied to the deposit.

    Visiting Students Only (i.e., if you are a student at a University other than UC Berkeley): Within 24 hours of submitting your application, you will receive an email from UC Berkeley asking you to set up your university credentials; this email does NOT constitute admission to the program. Please follow the instructions in the email. Once you have completed the necessary steps, please go to CalCentral to pay your $400 deposit. If you fail to make the $400 deposit within 48 hours of application submission, your application will be canceled.

    Completed applications are due no later than February 17, 2020. All applications are reviewed by Berkeley Study Abroad in the order they are received. Applicants will be notified of their admission status by email no later than March 20, 2020.



    If a program becomes full, a waitlist of all eligible applicants will be created in the order in which applications are received. Berkeley Study Abroad reserves sole discretion to manage program waitlists. If placed on a waitlist, you will be notified via email and sent a link to the Waitlist Action Form accessible via your Berkeley Study Abroad portal. In this form you must indicate your intention for one of the following:

    • Remain on the waitlist – no further action required.
    • Switch to another open program – It is your responsibility to assure that you meet all eligibility requirements for the program that you would like to switch into. Please note: If you decide to switch to an open program, you will forfeit your spot on the waitlist.
    • Withdraw your application from the waitlist – If you withdraw from the waitlist, you will receive a refund of your $400 deposit.

    If an opening occurs on the program, the first student on the waitlist will be notified by email. If you receive an offer for a place in the program, you will have 24 hours to accept the offer. If you do not respond within 24 hours, you will be placed at the bottom of the waitlist, and the next student on the list will be offered a spot instead. By accepting this offer, you agree to abide by all program policies and deadlines, including those relating to the refund of fees. If you cancel after the cancellation deadline, you will not receive a refund of the program fee.


    Admission and Confirmation


    Admitted students will receive a welcome packet, including detailed program information no later than March 20, 2020. The packet will contain important documents that need to be signed and submitted online, including a medical information form, proof of enrollment in health insurance, and other supplemental forms.

    These forms must be signed and returned to program staff by 5 p.m. PST April 3, 2020. If you choose not to participate in the program, you must submit a Program Enrollment Change Form via your Berkeley Study Abroad application portal by 5 p.m. PST April 3, 2020. Please note that if you are accepted and then choose to withdraw, the $400 deposit is non-refundable if you cancel after April 3, 2020. Incomplete or missing confirmation forms do not qualify as an official cancellation from Global Internships.


    Electronic Signatures


    All Global Internships programs will not accept electronic signatures on any document that requires a handwritten, wet-signature. Signatures must be hand-written with a blue or black pen. Please note that digital signatures and signatures made with a touch-screen will not be accepted.

    Any questions regarding electronic signatures and document submission should be directed to program staff.


    Program Dates and Components


    All program dates are set in advance. Students are expected to participate in all program components for the entire length of the program. Requests for late arrival or early departure will only be considered under extenuating circumstances and must be approved by the Berkeley Study Abroad office in advance.

    All students who take part in a Global Internships program are required to participate in an internship and to complete the online internship course. Students interning in locations outside of the San Francisco Bay Area are also required to take a second course specific to that program location. San Francisco Bay Area students are encouraged to complete an additional Summer Sessions course, which complements your internship. Failure to fully partake in ALL aspects of the program, including orientation, the internship, coursework, and other program activities, will result in dismissal from the program.

    Please note: The Berkeley Global Internships program is a rigorous academic experience. As such, we strongly recommend against simultaneously taking additional online courses in addition to the required program coursework and internship placement.




    Program staff will enroll you in Global Internships courses when admitted to your program. You will not be able to enroll yourself in or make any changes to program courses, though you may check the status of your enrollment via CalCentral. If you would like to make changes to any program courses, you must submit the Program Enrollment Change Form via your Berkeley Study Abroad application portal. Informing Berkeley Study Abroad staff is not sufficient by itself to effect a change to your program course(s). You are responsible for making any changes to non-program related courses through CalCentral.

    Global Internships courses can be taken for a Passed/Not Passed grade instead of a Letter grade, but you will be enrolled on a Letter grade basis by default. If you wish to select the Passed/Not Passed option, you may make this change online through CalCentral by the deadline that corresponds to your program. Please check this deadline with program staff, as deadlines are different for each program. It is strongly advised that you consult with your academic adviser if you are unsure how the Passed/Not Passed option will impact major/minor or graduation requirements. Please note: Retroactive grade change requests will require college, department, and/or instructor approval. Regular Berkeley Summer Sessions' policies apply.


    Course Credits


    All program courses are taken for UC Berkeley credit and will automatically appear on your UC Berkeley transcripts. You are advised to consult with your academic adviser before applying for any program to confirm whether the course credits earned through participation will fulfill any major/minor or graduation requirements. For non-UC Berkeley students wishing to transfer their course credits, it is important to speak with an adviser at your home institution before applying to ensure that credit transfer is possible.


    Placement Process


    An internship placement coordinator will conduct an internship placement meeting with you to discuss your interests and qualifications. This meeting will occur prior to application for Tokyo Global Internship students (please click here for more information about this process) and after application for all other locations.

    After the placement meeting, you will receive an internship placement within one of the three areas of interest specified on your application based on your qualifications and interests, as well as the realities of the location you are interning in an internship providers’ needs and work cycles. These placements can be made at any time between acceptance and the start of the program. If you decide to reject an offer, you must outline why it is not a good fit based on the three areas of interest that were agreed upon. You will not be able to return to an offer once it has been rejected and will receive no more than three offers. You are expected to actively participate in the placement process and respond to emails promptly. Failure to do so may result in dismissal from the program.

    Internship assignments cannot be changed after the first week of interning at the placement site unless requested by the internship provider.


    Program Preparation


    You are required to attend the program orientation and may be asked to attend other preparatory workshops conducted by program staff. If you are unable to attend for any reason, it is your responsibility to notify the program staff to ensure that the information and materials covered during the orientation and workshops are received.

    A valid passport is required to travel to all program destinations, except for those located within the United States. When traveling overseas, your passport must be valid for the duration of the program and at least six months beyond your travel dates; otherwise, your passport should be renewed before the program starts. Passport renewal can be a lengthy process, so it is important to start the process as early as possible. UC Berkeley students may apply for a passport at the Recreational Sports Facility or downtown Berkeley post office.

    An entry visa may be required for travel to the program location, depending on your citizenship and length of stay. Visa requirements can be obtained from the embassy or consulate of that country. There may be different requirements for U.S. citizens and non-U.S. citizens. It is important to obtain information pertinent to your citizenship status and to begin this process as soon as possible to avoid delays. It is your responsibility to prepare any travel documents (i.e., passport, visa, etc.), pay any related fees, and complete the steps that are necessary to enter your program location(s). Berkeley Study Abroad is not responsible for ensuring that you have the appropriate visa or documentation. Inability to obtain the appropriate travel documentation to participate in the program may not be considered as a basis for a refund of program-related fees.

    Please note: You must abide by all regulations outlined by the terms of your travel documentation or risk deportation and/or other legal ramifications from your program destination(s). Also, you may also face dismissal from the program.

    All program participants will also be required to have a functioning local phone number where you can be reached 24 hours a day, seven days a week while on your program. This expense will be factored into the financial aid budget for students that qualify for aid. For those that do not, please keep this cost in mind when planning your budget.


    Academic and Other Accommodations


    You are encouraged to disclose any accommodations (physical, academic, etc.) you may need while abroad as early as possible. Berkeley Study Abroad will work with you through the interactive process to provide reasonable accommodations to the extent possible given the realities of the country to which you will be traveling and the time at which the accommodation request is made. It is recommended that you reach out to the program staff and the Disabled Students Program as accommodations are determined by an individual assessment of each student.




    You are required to use the program housing arranged by Berkeley Study Abroad for all locations outside of the U.S. You may not arrange your housing or choose independent housing unless you have extenuating circumstances and have secured written approval in advance from Berkeley Study Abroad. If you have extenuating circumstances and want to request a special exception to the Housing Policy, please contact the program staff. Providing Berkeley Study Abroad with advanced notice of your need for alternative accommodations increases the likelihood that arrangements can be made, but it is not guaranteed.

    Housing arrangements are made for all programs during official program dates. This does not, however, include housing accommodations for the portion of some programs that take place on the UC Berkeley campus. Please see the website for location-specific program information.

    If you intend to arrive earlier or stay later than the program dates, you must make your housing arrangements and be prepared to pay out-of-pocket for these additional nights. Neither Berkeley Study Abroad staff, nor the program director or local staff can make special arrangements regarding a student's early arrival or late departure. Berkeley Study Abroad does not provide any warranties or guarantees for arrangements made outside of official program dates.

    For those programs with shared accommodations, program participants will be assigned rooms and roommates randomly. Due to the complexity of program logistics, including different types of accommodations and our work with partner organizations, we are unable to accommodate roommate requests. Overnight guests are not allowed in program housing.

    You must follow all the housing rules and regulations. Failure to do so may result in dismissal from the program. Please note, every set of program housing will have its unique set of rules that will need to be followed. Please check with your program coordinator for details. Also, you will be responsible for paying for any damages, repairs, or replacements, if necessary, that occur in your unit.

    Students with Dependents: If you are a student with dependents, you may submit a petition to waive out of program housing. All petitions are subject to review, and decisions are final. We strongly suggest working with Berkeley Study Abroad staff as soon as possible. 

    Berkeley Study Abroad is committed to working with Gender Non-Conforming and Trans students to create housing spaces and arrangements that are as safe and welcoming as possible while studying abroad. If you are a GNC or Trans student and have questions or concerns about housing arrangements, please reach out to Berkeley Summer Abroad program staff as soon as possible. While some countries and locations may have limited options, BSA staff will work with you to find the best arrangement within the parameters of each location or to find a program location that will fit your needs.




    Non-enrolled family members and others accompanying participants, faculty, or staff of Global Internships programs cannot be accommodated in program lodging, courses, or activities held in conjunction with the program. Program classes, excursions, guest lectures, dinners, receptions, program-provided transportation, and all other program-related activities and events are open only to those officially enrolled in the program. Berkeley Study Abroad will not provide support services or assume any responsibility for those not enrolled in the program.




    For Global Internships programs, charges applied to your CalCentral account are as follows:

    • Tuition: Tuition is based on a per-unit cost. Each program has a specific number of units attached to the courses included. Per unit, cost is different based on your status: UC undergraduate student rate or Visiting student rate for all non-UC participants.
    • Program Fee: The program fee is specific to each program and can be found on the individual program pages.
    • Other campus fees may be applied based on your student status.

    The program fee varies from program to program. However, the following items are included in the program fees:

    • Student housing (not included for San Francisco Bay Area option)
    • On-site orientation program
    • Excursions (not included in the San Francisco Bay Area option)
    • 24/7 program support
    • Internship placement services
    • International travel and health insurance

    Please note that San Francisco Bay Area students must make their own housing arrangements. The fee for some programs may also include program-related meals, group transportation, guest lectures, etc.

    In addition to the fees (program fee and tuition) applied to your CalCentral account, you will be responsible for additional expenses such as airline tickets and other out-of-pocket personal costs not covered by the program. The following items are universally excluded from the program fee for all Global Internships programs:

    • International airfare
    • Local transportation
    • Personal expenses (souvenirs, individual daily transportation, emergency expenses, medical expenses, toiletries, etc.)
    • Course materials (textbooks and readers)
    • Additional meals outside of the provided meals (if applicable)
    • Travel documentation (i.e., visa) costs, if necessary

    For more information about what expenses are included in a specific program, contact program staff.




    Once you are registered in your program courses, the corresponding charges will appear on your CalCentral account. Visiting students will be assigned a SID (student identification number) to access their account. Payments may be submitted in several different ways, including:

    • E-check
    • Credit card - please note, a 2.75% non-refundable convenience fee applies to credit card payments
    • Check - please be sure to indicate your Berkeley student identification number and the name of the program you are participating on in the notes section of the check

    For more information, please go to


    Financial Aid


    For UC Berkeley students only:
    To determine your financial aid eligibility for a Global Internships program, review the financial aid information for Global Internships and consult with the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office. When the Financial Aid and Scholarships Office calculates the amount of aid offered for participation in a program, they consider not only the tuition and program fee charges but also any out-of-pocket expenses they anticipate students may incur during the program. The charges posted directly to your CalCentral account for the tuition and the program fee are different from the total expenses that may be incurred while abroad.

    If you require financial aid to cover program costs, it is your responsibility to confirm your aid package in advance of any program deadlines. Inability to pay the program fee or tuition is not a valid reason to receive a refund of the fees associated with your program.

    Financial aid eligibility during the summer is partially based on full-time course enrollment. Canceling from, or being dismissed from, a Global Internships program may have implications for your financial aid awards. Please check with Financial Aid Counselors to see how this may impact you.

    For UC Berkeley students:
    Dedicated Study Abroad Financial Aid drop-in advising is available during the Fall and Spring semester from 1-3 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday at 160 Stephens Hall.

    For non-UC Berkeley students:
    Visiting students should contact the financial aid office at their home institution for more information.


    Dismissal from Program


    Failure to uphold requirements set by the UC Berkeley Code of Conduct, Global Internships Student Agreement, program policies, and program staff may result in immediate dismissal from the program. If a student is dismissed, he/she will be removed from program courses and will be responsible for all program-related expenses as well as travel home. Program accommodations will need to be vacated within 24 hours of dismissal.

    Please note any violation of the Berkeley Code of Conduct occurring while participating in the Global Internships program may result in dismissal from the program, and will also be reported to the UC Berkeley Center for Student Conduct which may lead to further sanctions as deemed appropriate by the University.


    Withdrawal, Cancellation & Refund


    To withdraw from any Global Internships program, 1) speak to your program adviser and 2) complete and submit a Program Enrollment Change Form via your Berkeley Study Abroad application portal. Please note that only writing an email or talking to program staff without submitting this form is not considered an official request. Additionally, incomplete or missing confirmation forms do not qualify as an official cancellation from Global Internships.

    If you are a San Francisco Bay Area participant, are enrolled in additional Summer Sessions’ courses outside of the program, and decide that you will not be participating in the program and the additional courses, it is your responsibility to drop the additional courses via CalCentral when canceling out of the program.

    The refund policy is as follows:

    The $400 deposit is nonrefundable once you are accepted into the program. Please note that If you request to withdraw your application prior to an admission decision being issued, or cancel your participation after being accepted to the program, the deposit remains non-refundable. The $400 deposit will only be refunded under the following circumstances:

    • You are denied admission by Berkeley Study Abroad because the selection criteria were not met.
    • The program you applied to is canceled by Berkeley Study Abroad, and you choose not to switch to another open program.
    • The program you applied to is full, and you choose to withdraw from the waitlist instead of switching to another open program.

    Program Fee
    A refund of the program fee, minus the deposit, will be issued if you cancel by 5 p.m. PST April 3, 2020, by submitting the Program Enrollment Form via your Berkeley Study Abroad application portal. If the request is received after 5 p.m. on the deadline, you will not be eligible for a refund of the program fee. If payment has not yet been made, you will still owe the program fee.

    A refund of tuition will be issued if you cancel by the Friday of the first week of class. For information about tuition refund policies and deadlines, visit

    Please note: if you have any outstanding debts to the University (including Fall or Spring fees, printing fees, Course Material Fees, library fines, emergency loans, etc.), any program-related refunds will be applied first to overdue fees. Any remaining amount will be refunded.




    We understand that situations occur that may prevent you from attending or completing your Global Internships program or Summer Sessions courses. If you need to drop or withdraw from your program after April 3, 2020, request a refund, or have another request, there are procedures in place for requesting an appeal.

    Please note: Summer 2020 appeals will not be accepted after September 25, 2020.

    To appeal, send an email to with the subject line: “Global Internships 2020 Refund Appeal: [Student Name and Student SID].” You must attach to the email:

    • Signed letter of explanation: Attach a signed letter of explanation stating, as concisely and clearly as possible, the reason for your appeal. The appeal letter is limited to one page, and it must be written and signed by the student.
    • Supporting Documentation: Attach any supporting documentation that verifies the reason for your appeal.
      • For an appeal due to medical withdrawal: please have your medical provider email directly with a signed letter including the same subject line as above. Your medical provider must verify that your withdrawal was medically necessary, but need not go into details on the condition itself. Medical letters must be typed on official letterhead, and be received directly from the physician or another personal healthcare provider. Verification of Illness forms from the Tang Center at UC Berkeley qualifies as well.
      • For an appeal due to a death in the family: We require a copy of death certificate (or verification of death from the hospital or attending physician), and the deceased's relation to the student.

    NOTE: Please anticipate 4-6 weeks for the appeal review process. Once an appeal decision has been made, the decision is final. It is essential to disclose all information, reasons for the appeal, and all supporting documentation regarding your case in the initial appeal letter. Subsequent appeal letters providing new information, different reasons for the appeal, or new supporting documentation are not eligible for review.


    Program Cancellation


    Berkeley Study Abroad reserves the right to cancel a program for any reason. In the unlikely event that the program is canceled, you will be notified and have the option of switching to another open program. If you decide not to participate in another program, a full refund of all unit fee(s) and program fee, including the $400 deposit, will be issued upon confirmation of your withdrawal.

    Berkeley Study Abroad is not responsible for any costs incurred regarding air travel, housing or personal expenses.


    Airline Tickets


    It is your responsibility to make reservations and pay for all airline tickets if needed. It is strongly advised that you do not purchase airfare until your participation in the program is confirmed. It is also advised that you purchase trip cancellation insurance.


    Health Insurance


    When traveling out-of-state or to a foreign country to participate in off-campus activities sponsored and supervised by the University, registered students will be covered worldwide, 24 hours a day, for a wide variety of accidents and illnesses. This coverage is provided at no cost to students; however, you must register for the insurance to be covered. Program participants will receive registration instructions in your confirmation packet. This coverage includes:

    • Emergency Medical Evacuation
    • Security Extraction
    • Accident/Sickness/Medical
    • Other Travel Assistance Services (when student traveler is 100+ miles from campus)

    To view the complete Travel Benefits Summary, please visit:


    Health and Wellness


    Staying healthy while abroad enables you to make the most of your time there. Berkeley Study Abroad strongly encourages all students to speak with their primary care physician and mental health care providers about traveling to determine what you need to assure your physical and mental well-being while abroad.




    Some countries may require certain vaccination or health clearances for visa or entry purposes. Participation in the program is contingent upon your obtaining the required visa. Failure to obtain a visa based on a failure to obtain necessary vaccinations is not a basis for a refund of program-related fees. The Center for Disease Control details vaccination requirements and other traveler's health information. The Tang Center also offers an International Travel Clinic that includes a personal travel consultation and immunizations.


    Further Information


    Program and country information may not be provided by Berkeley Study Abroad. It is important that you actively research and ask appropriate questions to get the answers that you need. Essential information can be obtained from the following sources:

    • Pre-departure orientation
    • Welcome packet
    • Pre-departure packet
    • Berkeley Study Abroad staff
    • Books on your destination country (recommended: the Culture Shock! series)
    • U.S. Department of State, Centers for Disease Control, and Embassy websites