After repeatedly extending the deadline to apply for International Bulldogs programs this summer, Undergraduate Career Services has seen a rise in application numbers to those internships.
UCS initially reduced the number of International Bulldogs internships for which students could apply to two earlier this semester, but the career center decided last week to reinstate the three-application rule it has used in past years, UCS Director Allyson Moore said. Though the initial deadline for International Bulldogs programs was Feb. 13, UCS has since extended that date three times, and applications are now due this coming Monday. The number of applications to these programs has seen “modest growth,” Moore said, with 1,237 applications received as of Monday compared to 1,183 total applications last year — despite the fact that UCS internships are competing with an increased number of other employment options.
“Student interest in International Bulldogs still appears strong,” Moore said in an email Monday. “Interestingly, the greater challenge is the increased number of alternative intern options available to students. In other words, it seems as though our students are attracting good intern offers from multiple sources.”
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Moorse said UCS increased the number of applications students were allowed to submit after attracting several new positions from employers during the spring semester. UCS initially lowered the number of applications to encourage students to be “more selective” in their choices, she added.
UCS anticipates about 120 student participants in the International Bulldogs program this summer, Moore said, compared to 113 students last year. These figures only include “pure” International Bulldogs programs, and not the internships UCS offers with its partner organizations AIESEC, Unite for Sight and Cultural Vistas, which she said “will likely generate additional student placements.”
Seven students who participated in International Bulldogs internships last summer said they enjoyed their experience and that UCS was particularly helpful in setting them up with “in-country contacts,” who introduced them to their host cities. But two of those students said UCS could do more to smooth the transition into their summer jobs.
Erik Urosa ’13, who participated in the 2011 Buenos Aires International Bulldogs program and worked for TerraCycle — a marketing and recycling company headquartered in Trenton, N.J. — said he had a positive experience with the program and appreciated the guidance he received from two in-country contacts that UCS provided. Still, he said UCS could provide more opportunities geared towards students interested in science and engineering fields. The career center could also do a better job ensuring that internships offered through International Bulldogs are “productive and worthwhile,” he added.
“Although I feel that most of the people I was with felt good about their jobs, some often complained about the lack of interesting work or projects,” Urosa said.
Urosa said he applied to another International Bulldogs program this year but “mainly as a backup,” because the internship would be unpaid, as living abroad for a summer can be expensive.
Kerri Lu ’14, who participated in the Beijing International Bulldogs program and interned at the Palace Museum in the Forbidden City, said her experience was “fantastic” but added that some of the Yalies on her trip had difficulty finding convenient housing and had long commutes.
“My specific placement was a little disorganized, but I knew that coming in,” Lu said. “It would have been nice to have more facilitated communication between the internship placement and [International] Bulldogs, since I had some difficulty getting in touch with them prior to the summer.”
Students on financial aid who are placed for an internship through the International Bulldogs program may be eligible to receive an International Summer Award to help them cover the cost of their trip.