Funding for 2020 Unpaid Summer Internships

Applications are open for Summer 2020 Internship Funding! 

Funding application deadline: April 13, 2020.

Please read all information and FAQs below and plan to secure your internship no later than early April, so you have time to apply for funding

Middlebury students are eager to gain "real world" experience, and CCI is here to help.  We realize that sometimes a great summer internship may be unpaid or offer a very small stipend; CCI provides internship grants on a competitive basis to help students with expenses related to unpaid summer internships/experiences.

Competitive grants available for Summer 2020

  • Summer Internship Funding Grants: $3000
  • First-Year Explore Grants: $1000
  • Dance Festival Grants: $3000

Criteria for internship funding eligibility:

  • Connects the work of an organization to your career exploration, academic pursuits, and/or personal passions and interests, and your aspirations for the future.

  • Includes substantive responsibilities and mimimum time commitments as outlined below:

    • $3000 Summer Funding Grants require a minimum internship length of 8 weeks at 30 hours/week or a longer internship that totals at least 240 hours. Strongly encouraged: Appointment with a CCI advisor to discuss your plans.

    • $1000 First-Year Explore Grants require a minimum of 4 weeks with a total of at least 100 hours. Required: Appointment with a CCI advisor to discuss your plans. 

  • Requires resume approval by CCI Peer Career Advisor before submission of funding application.
  • Must have secured the internship, accepted it, AND committed to it in order to apply.
  • Must have at least one remaining semester at Middlebury after the summer in order to apply; must not be planning to transer or be on leave (unless it is Study Abroad) the semester prior to or after the summer internship unless approved by CCI. 
  • Must not have already received a $3000 competitive grant from CCI, nor be participating in another CCI-sponsored program/internship this summer.
  • May be a self-directed project, not necessarily affiliated with an organization (much more competitive - requires a letter of reference from your advisor or mentor for the project who cannot be a family member)
  • Dance grants support dance students who are attending performance-based trainings/intensives.
  • Use this Quick Guide: CCI Summer Funding for additional information about eligibility and how to apply.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How competitive is the process and what are the most compelling applications?

While we would like to fund everyone, we have limited funds, so awards will be made through a competitive process. You should make sure you have an alternative plan in the event that you don't receive funding. 

All applications will be reviewed after the April 13 deadline. Funding decisions will be sent via a Handshake email on May 1. 

All communications will be done through Handshake so pay attention to Handshake emails and notifications. You may need to look in the Spam, Junk, or Clutter folders to find them!

The funding is competitive but you have a good chance if you can clearly demonstrate that this is the right internship/experience for you at the right time; the experience should give you the opportunity to gain experience and skills and relate to planning for your future. All applicants must have their resume reviewed and approved by a Peer Career Advisor before they apply. Applicants who are on financial aid or demonstrate high financial need, have longer internships, are juniors or higher, write a compelling essay, and have demonstrated their seriousness by talking with a CCI advisor about their plans will be the stongest candidates.  Any combination of these will strengthen your chances. An internship should be one longer experience (e.g. 8 weeks or longer), not two shorter related experiences together in one application. Not receiving funding is not a reflection on the valule of your experience, but is the reality of the funding committee having to make hard choices with limited funds. Applications for self-directed projects and from students not on financial aid who have low expenses and are applying mainly to off-set lost summer wages are less competitive.  

What do I need to know about funding for international internships?

International internships require more planning time in planning, particularly in terms of investigating any visa issues associated with your internship. These internships can be an incredible part of a post-study abroad experience as well as an opportunity to explore work in international development or business, teaching, languages, and more. Please note that students must comply with international travel registration, waivers, and insurance coverage as described below in order to receive internship funding.

International registration, health, and insurance coverage process: If you receive internship funding and your internship experience is in a country other than the US, you must complete steps to register your travel plans online and ensure that you have medevac, repatriation, and health insurance. If you do not have such insurance coverage, you must enroll (there is a charge of approximately $75 per month). If you are an international student with an internship experience in your home country, you do not have to purchase the insurance but you still need to register your travel plans. Specific instructions will be included in your funding award notification. Students should consult the CDC, Parton Health Center and/or their health care provider on recommended vaccinations.  

Please see the 4 Simple Steps for Safer Travel

PLEASE NOTE:
Funding requests for travel to countries with State Department Travel Advisories of Levels 2, 3, or 4 will necessitate additional paperwork and may be denied by the College based on a risk assessment analysis. Check the State Department Travel Advisory page. Travel to a Level 2 advisory country where Middlebury has a school abroad does not require additional review.  Travel to countries with Level 2 where Middlebury does not have a school abroad, as well as countries with Level 3 and 4 travel advisories (including your home country), require submission of an International Activity Approval Form to the Global Operations Committee. Complete the form at the same time that you complete your funding application or earlier so the Committee has time to review your proposal.

What is a First-Year Explore Grant and who is eligible?

A First-Year Explore Grant gives students the opportunity to explore a career-related interest or field during the summer and be supported by a CCI $1000 grant. The experience must be at least 4 weeks long and 25 hours per week. Students may work with an organization or design a self-directed project. 

Eligible students are First-Year Febs, First-Years, and Sophomore Febs.  Sophomore Febs may choose either an Explore Grant or a $3000 grant. 

Students awarded a First-Year Explore grant are required to attend a pre-departure training on Sunday, May 3 from 7:30-8:45 pm in Coltrane Lounge. 
Alternatively, if your internship is an international community-based experience not in your own country or a domestic communityi-based social impact experience, you should attend a more in-depth Pre-Immersion Training for International and/or Social Impact Experiences on Sunday, May 3, 1:00-4:30 pm, Coltrane Lounge, ADK. RSVP to Cheryl Whitney Lower

What is a self-directed project?

A self-directed project means you have developed an idea to explore an interest or field but you are not working for or with an organization. You will not have a supervisor per se, but you do need an adult mentor or advisor (no direct relatives) who can help you determine goals and stay on track with those goals over the course of the summer. Self-directed projects require more independence and drive and thus will be judged on a MUCH MORE COMPETITIVE basis by the funding committee. We recommend that you meet with the CCI advisor that fits your project interest (e.g. arts, environment, etc). Only a handful of self-directed projects will be approved for funding. Applications for funding must be very thorough and include the name of a mentor/advisor, timelines, and achievable goals. You must be able to articulate why you need to spend 8 or more weeks at 30 hours a week (for $3000 grants) on this project as opposed to doing it in your spare time, and why you have not pursued working for an organization. Your advisor/mentor must write a letter of reference for you talking about his or her knowledge of the project, how they plan to advise you, and why they feel you have the drive and organizational ability to achieve your goals. (Upload this letter of reference in the attachments section of your Handshake Experience). Plans to do independent academic research do not qualify for a self-directed project.  Examples of past self-directed project ideas include creating a STEM camp for girls, conducting an environmental assessment for an abandoned coffee plantation, and developing a solar-powered lawn mower. 

What if I don't have my internship secured by the April 13 deadline?

CCI will not accept incomplete applications, and we will not accept changes in your application (except those related to length of the internship or a change in supervisor).  You must have been offered your internship, accepted it, and committed to it; you must be sure that the internship for which you are applying for funding is the one you want to do. You may not apply for funding for an internship and then ask to switch your funding application or grant to another internship.  CCI expects you to conduct yourself professionally in your internship search. If you have accepted an internship, you should withdraw your applications from all other employers/organizations.  If you do change your mind, you will not be able to make changes to your application for funding or submit a new funding application, and you will need to forfeit your funding.   

Students should apply to their internships early and explain to potential employers that they have an opportunity to apply for funding by the April 13 deadline. Often employers will hire on a rolling basis. Do not wait until the application deadline to apply for an internship. 

If you are not sure which internship you want to do or have not heard back from employers by the April 13 deadline, do not submit a funding application. Please work with a CCI advisor for alternatives to your summer plans or contact Cheryl Whitney Lower with questions. 

Students who have been offered their internship contingent on a security clearance should still submit an application and indicate in their essay that they are on hold until the security clearance process is complete. 

Are there experiences that CCI does not fund?

Except for dance grants, CCI typically does not fund classes, trainings, or experiences with organizations that charge a fee for participation, e.g. third party internship providers, yoga retreats, etc.  We may make exceptions if the majority of the experience is an internship or if the fee is charged mainly to pay for housing.  

CCI does not fund on-campus summer undergraduate research positions with Middlebury faculty because these positions are funded by Middlebury's Undergraduate Research Office in the CTLR. CCI also does not fund students doing independent academic research.  

We do not fund paid internships unless it is a very low-paid internship (i.e. less than $2000 for an eight-week experience or more).  In this case, we may choose to provide a supplement grant of up to $1000 or to the equivalent of $3000; students in this position should use the $3000 grant application form and explain your situation in your narrative and in the budget form. If you are receiving any compensation from your employer such a housing or transportation stipend, you can expect that CCI will deduct that amount of money from your internship grant in order to make your award consistent with what other students are receiving.  Contact Cheryl Whitney Lower if you have questions about a low paid internship. 

CCI does not generally fund students who receive funding by another Middlebury program or office. The exception is if you are taking part in an intercultural experience that benefits the community, it is possible to combine a CCI grant with a Cross-Cultural Community Service grant through the Center for Community Engagement. 

CCI does not fund experiences where a family member is serving as your supervisor or mentor. 

Does my budget need to add up to $3000 or $1000?

No. The set grant amounts give you decision-making power over your own summer experience. Your costs may be substantially higher, in which case you will need to assess and explain in your budget how you will cover the additional costs. Consider these grants support from CCI to help cover the costs associated with your internship. You may need to obtain a part-time job to finance the whole experience. On the other hand, if your costs are low (i.e. you decide to live at home) and the set grant amount exceeds your budget, you should explain why you are applying to offset lost summer wages. Applications from students not on financial aid who are applying mainly to off-set lost wages are less competitive. 

I need help making my budget. What are the guidelines? And where is the Budget Template I need to use for my funding application?

Creating a budget and thinking carefully about how much money you need for your experience can be a great learning experience. You  must use CCI's Budget Template when applying for funding.   

We have limited funds to award. Your careful attention to your budget indicates that you approached the process thoughtfully--and did your homework! Here are some general guidelines:

  • Funding can be used to help you with expenses associated with your internship. Funding may be used to offset lost summer wages but if you are not on financial aid, applications requesting lost summer wages may be less competitive.  
  • A typical food budget will vary depending on where you live, but we advise using a figure of approximately $75- $100 per week.
  • Housing can be tricky. If you choose to stay in a university-based internship housing program (e.g., NYU in New York City), your entire internship funding allocation will likely be eaten up by that cost--and then some! But you don't want to spend your summer sleeping on someone's floor either. Start your search early, check out CCI's housing resources, Airbnb, look for house-sitting opportunities, enlist your various networks. We recommend allowing approximately $800-$1000 per month for housing. If you are living at home or with relatives, do not include housing and food costs in your budget. MIDDLEBURY HOUSING NOTE: Even if your internship is in the Middlebury area, receiving internship funding does NOT make you eligible for on-campus summer housing.
  • Your budget can include transportation to and from your internship site. However, if you live in San Francisco, and your internship is in San Francisco, we would not expect you to include the cost of round-trip airfare in your budget. If your home is in Boston, and your internship is in San Francisco, then it is certainly appropriate for you to include round-trip airfare. Transportation costs can also include subway fare, commuting by train, gas and tolls, etc.
  • If you are studying abroad and your internship will continue in your host country, you should not include return airfare to the US in your budget as you would be returning anyway. Budgeting for in-country transportation expenses or travel to another country for your internship is appropriate.
  • It is okay if your internship site wants to provide minimal financial assistance such as a subway pass, help with housing, or daily lunch passes. You do need to indicate these funding sources in your application. 

When in doubt, just ask! Or add an explanatory note in the Comments section of the budget.

Where is the application? How do I apply?

If you have read all the information at on this page, and have completed all the steps in the Quick Guide: CCI Summer Funding, including having your resume approved by a PCA at Quick Questions* before submitting your application, writing your essay, completing your budget, completing your funding agreement, and completing additional paperwork if your internship is outside the U.S. and qualifies for review by Global Operations Committee (see FAQ on international internships), then you are ready to apply! Find all the forms you need in the blue box on the top right-hand side of this page.

*Juniors studying abroad who need a resume approved, may contact Cheryl Whitney Lower  (please do so before April 3).

Complete an application for funding by “Requesting an Experience.” This application can be found at go/Handshake>Career Center>Experience>Request an Experience. 

If you are participating in a CCI-sponsored internship or a cohort internship and have received an award letter, you will be instructed to create an Experience and select either CCI-sponsored or cohort as “experience type.” All other applicants should choose the industry field into which your internship, dance festival, or self-directed project falls to answer the first question on “experience type.” Answer all required questions marked with an asterisk. 

Remember that your application is not complete until you have uploaded all four required documents (essay, CCI approved resume, budget, and funding agreement) into the attachments section found on the left-hand side of your Handshake Experience. Students submitting an application for a self-directed project must also upload a letter of reference from the advisor or mentor who will advise you before and during your project. Do you upload zip files. Please note that you must upload your resume to the attachments section even if it is already in the documents section of Handshake. You must complete your application all in one sitting. Applications that have been submitted without the required documents will be declined. 

All communications will be done through Handshake emails so students must check email, clutter, SPAM and junk email folders daily and ensure that you have your Handshake notifications turned on. Failure to respond to email will result in application being declined.  

When will I hear about funding? When will I get my money? What are the grant requirements?

Funding notifications will be sent by Handshake email on May 1. Make sure your Handshake notifications are enabled. You may need to monitor your spam, junk, and clutter folders. 

If you are awarded funding and have entered your direct deposit information correctly and completed all steps outlined in your award letter by the deadlines, you can expect your money in your account by approximately June 5. Students who have not entered their direct deposit information correctly will have checks mailed to them. Since you will not receive your money until June, be sure to make your summer plans accordingly; you may need to arrange to start your internship later to accommodate the payment schedule. 

Please note that international students may have taxes withheld ahead of time so the amount of the grant you receive may be less than stated in your award letter. 

All funded interns must attend a mandatory internship pre-departure meeting. Attendance will be taken, and any student who has not attended one of the meetings risks losing their funding or sponsorship. Contact Cheryl Whitney Lower ahead of time with any extenuating circumstances.

RSVP on the links below to commit to attending one the following meetings: