It is possible, though not easy, to obtain an internship or volunteer position while you are in Santiago. While the Santiago staff can assist you in contacting organizations on the following list of volunteer and internship partners, there is no guarantee that any specific request can be fulfilled. If you are interested in doing an internship or volunteering, you should get in touch with the Santiago staff well in advance of the quarter, to learn more about what might be feasible. Those students who arrange internships and voluntary work independently should inform the Santiago staff about their arrangements.
Students who are interested in pursuing an internship should keep in mind that the main focus of the Santiago Center is its academic program, and all students are expected to comply with their academic and program obligations before completing an internship. The 12 credit hour minimum does not include the internship credit hours (2), and students must sign up for 12 hours of regular classes in addition to their internship. Students should plan to dedicate about 6-10 hours per week (maximum 10 hours) to an internship. Additionally, most organizations will expect that you have strong Spanish language skills—completion of 2 years of Spanish is recommended.
The Santiago Center currently has contacts with the following institutions where previous students have interned:
- Inria (Technology for social change—computer science based French organization)
- Fundación Terram (Critical analysis of environmental public policies, especially climate change)
- Hábitat para la Humanidad Chile (Housing projects to allow sick children to return to a healthy home after a hospital stay – Program “Nuestros Hijos Vuelven a Casa” – accepts a wide variety of majors)
- Museo de la Memoria (Human rights museum highlighting the Pinochet era)
*Fundación Terram and Museo de la Memoria, require strong backgrounds in Spanish. Inria and Habitat para la Humanidad do not.
Students interested in pursuing an internship at one of these organizations should contact the Academic Coordinator, Samantha Pettigrew, prior to their arrival in Santiago. However, it will be the student’s responsibility to make contact with the organization. The Santiago staff is more than happy to liaise with these organizations, but it is up to the student to set up the internship themselves. If students are interested in pursuing an internship at an organization not listed above, they should make their own arrangements for an internship during their stay in Santiago.
All students who intend to pursue an internship should send a detailed proposal to Program Director, Iván Jaksic, at least 30 days before their arrival in Santiago. Those students who plan on taking an internship for credit will also be required to write a final two to three page paper reflecting on their internship experience. This paper must be submitted to the Director before the end of the term.
If you would like to get involved in the local community by working with children, the environment, poverty reduction, etc., committing less time and receiving no academic credit, then volunteering may be a good option for you. While volunteering is much more flexible than interning, it still requires time and effort. Sometimes volunteer organizations are situated far from the Stanford Center, implying travel time to the location. Evaluate your academic workload and check your schedule before you commit to volunteering, so that you can be sure to follow through with your promises until the end of the quarter.Examples of volunteer organizations include:
- Sendero de Chile (Help with Escuelas de Aire Libre, workshops with local students)
- Liceo Lastarria (English language support for high school students)
- Hospital Dr. Luis Calvo Mackenna (Volunteer at library / waiting rooms in children’s hospital)
- INCAMI - Instituto Católico Chileno de Migración (Social work with immigrants, job support)
- COANIL (Work with children with intellectual disabilities)
- Several of the organizations listed above for internships also offer volunteer opportunities (Fundación Terram, Hábitat para la Humanidad, y Innovacional)
All of the listed volunteer organizations require a strong background in Spanish.
Volunteer projects do not require a proposal, and students can make participation decisions during orientation week, with the help of Santiago staff. Contact: Academic Coordinator, Samantha Pettigrew.
Student Grants for Research Overseas
Undergraduate Advising and Research (UAR) administers several grants that can support research overseas, including the Quarterly and Major Grants. Help to prepare for the grant competitions is available via email. For deadlines, directions, and specific policies regarding off-campus research, please visit the UAR student grants website.