International Cooperative Education

 


Frequently Asked Questions

 
 

The following contains a list of the most common questions we're asked. If you do not find an answer to your question below, please feel free to contact us.

In which countries do you offer positions? What language skills are needed?
Is there an age limit? Is the program open to all nationalities?
What are the student's obligations and responsibilities? What costs are involved?
What is the length of the program? What types of positions are involved?
What salary range can I expect? Can I choose the type of job I would like?
What is the application deadline? What are my chances of finding a job through ICE?
Where can I download the application form? After I have my interview, what happens next?
Can I get university credit for the internship? Internet, telephone, and texting
When will I know where I may be working?  

In which countries do you offer positions? | Top

Participating countries include Argentina, Australia, Belgium, England, Belgium, Bhutan, Bolivia, Brazil, China, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, England, Ethiopia, Finland, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Ireland, Japan, Laos, Mali, Mexico, Mongolia, Nepal, Peru, Poland, Scotland, Singapore, Switzerland, Taiwan, Tanzania, Tibet, and the United Kingdom.  See our search by country page for more detail.

What language skills are needed? | Top

Language requirements depend on the position you choose. For instance, you'll simply need English for positions in England and Australia. If you are interested in a position in a non-English speaking country, you should be enrolled in a foreign language class (5 units class including grammar and literature) of your country of interest, e.g. German for Germany. Note, you must have completed at least one year of language studies and received a B or better grade before your departure on an ICE Program, or have comparable experience with the language.  Some assignments in non-English speaking countries have no foreign language requirements.

Is there an age limit? | Top

Yes. Age requirements set by foreign governments limit student work permits to applicants between the ages of 18 and 30.  However, we also have positions for older participants in some countries - check for availability.  These positions are generally unpaid. 

Is the program open to all nationalities? | Top

Yes, with the exception of specific restrictions imposed by governments of some countries.

What are the student's obligations and responsibilities? | Top

Students selected for an ICE Program are required to:

1. Send in application with the non-refundable application processing fee of US$250.
2. Participate in a personal orSkype interview with the ICE coordinator.
3. Send payment of $1250 non-refundable placement fee, and other fees if applicable, one week after notification of placement.
4. Required assignments: The student, upon being awarded placement in the ICE Program, must submit a 5-page paper of intent; learn job related vocabulary; become acquainted with current events in the U.S. and host country, write a letter of introduction to the employer as well as a 10-page pre-departure paper on the host country; and, summarize the actual experience in a 15-page final report, which is due by October 1.
5. Contract for medical insurance coverage for the entire stay abroad.

What costs are involved? | Top

1.  Application fee - US$250, non-refundable, to be submitted with the application.
2.  Placement fee - A US$1250, non-refundable, placement fee for professional services relating to employment placement, housing, work authorization and visa application, due one week after notification of placement.
3.  Any student holding a foreign passport, or a student residing outside of the U.S. during the placement period, is required to pay an additional US$100 to cover additional information required by the employer or the overseas agency that grants work permits.
4.  Students are required to pay for own round-trip airfare.
5.  Students must have a minimum reserve of US$1500 at the time of departure to pay for personal expenses during their stay.
6.  Local academic fees, if applicable.
7.  Consular fees for work visas, if required.
8.  Students must purchase and show proof of insurance coverage for the entire stay abroad. Instructions regarding insurance requirements will be issued separately.

What is the length of the program? | Top

The program typically lasts 2-3 months starting in early June and ending in August/September.  We also offer internships that last one or two semesters at other times of the year.

What type of positions are available? | Top

Positions are available in retail sales, supermarkets, hotels/restaurants, agriculture, offices, hospitals, banks, computer science, engineering, marketing, recreation, and teaching.

What salary range can I expect? | Top

Salary varies between US$300 and US$2300 per month. Some firms pay a full salary while others pay a reduced salary or stipend and provide accommodations at a reduced or no cost.  A few jobs are unpaid.  Many of these jobs pay well enough for you to be able to earn back the program fee and the cost of airfare, and at least break even.  In general, the positions with corporations in Germany and Belgium pay the best. 

The positions in China generally pay at local rates (low by US standards), which may be enough to cover local expenses, but not enough to recover your expenses for flight and program fee.  The positions in South America generally provide room & board (payment-in-kind) or pay at local rates that are very low by U.S. standards.  Teaching jobs in Tanzania are unpaid.

Can I choose the type of job I would like? | Top

You may indicate your preference. Placement will depend on language skills, previous work experience, and field of study. The availability of employment varies from country to country and the good will of an employer.  Be as specific as possible.  If you will only accept a certain type of job and are not flexible, make sure to indicate that on your application form and during the interview.  Our program works best for students who are flexible about the type of work they will accept, and are willing to accept a second or third employment option.

What is the application deadline? | Top

Most internships occur during the summer, for which you should apply no later than mid-March to provide time to find you an appropriate internship.  Excellent internships are often available past this date, but it becomes increasingly difficult for us to place students as summer approaches.  We need time to match you with a suitable employer, and get a work permit for you through the government authorities of the country in which you want to work.

Where can I download the application form? | Top

Download the application form here. 

What are my chances of finding a job through ICE? | Top

The ICE director conducts a Skype and/or telephone interview with students who are interested in applying.  The purpose of the interview is to determine your language fluency, people skills, and other personal characteristics necessary for working abroad.  At the end of the interview, you will be told if you qualify to be accepted into the program.

When will I know where I may be working? | Top

As soon as the employer confirms a position, you will be notified. The placement process is lengthy and takes place from February through mid May.

After I have my interview, what happens next? | Top

Your interview with the ICE director was purely for informational purposes.  The interview does not mean that you have applied.  To apply for placement into the internships you discussed, you must first send in the application form along with an application fee of $250.  Once you later accept a position, there's an additional program fee of $1,250 to cover costs of assistance with placement, housing, and work permits.

Can I get university credit for the internship? | Top

Many universities will allow you to earn credit via an independent study program.  If interested, make arrangements with your department in advance.  They will usually want you to submit the final report you sent to ICE.

Internet, telephone, and texting | Top

In almost all locations where we place students, there are nearby internet cafes for infrequent communications with your friends and family, but our program is not suitable for people who need to maintain daily contact with people back home, nor is it suitable for those who feel the need to constantly text and instant-message their friends.  The goal of our program is immersion in a different culture, not taking the USA with you via your smart phone.  Unlike college professors, most employers do not tolerate texting, personal emails, or web surfing during work hours.  Even in a developed country, high-speed internet is usually not available in your apartment or rented room.  If you intern in a developing country, cell phone, internet, and text messaging will probably not be available during your entire stay, unless you travel to a large city.