Work Globally While Living Locally

Photo by bongkarn thanyakij

Virtual internships, also known as remote or online internships, are a growing option for work abroad. Opportunities for remote work have existed for several years, and the COVID-19 pandemic has further highlighted their value as global learning experiences. Students can develop professional work skills and cultural competence while also preparing for future opportunities for study abroad or work with international companies or organizations at a low cost while continuing with NC State semester studies.

A global virtual internship will:

  • Build global connections for future work or study. Students can grow their professional network, expand options for future work opportunities, and increase their network going into the job market. Several programs even offer scholarships for future travel to the host country.
  • Earn academic credit. Talk to your undergraduate coordinator of advising to see how these courses might meet degree requirements or to fulfill the global knowledge co-requisite. 
  • Build your resume. Working remotely requires students to plan their time well, commit to tasks, and to manage communication with colleagues in another time zone and with another work culture. All of these skills, and more, are essential for future employment.
  • Enhance remote work skills. Working online can be effective and efficient. More companies are expanding their employees’ remote work options, a trend that is likely to continue beyond the pandemic. Increased digital and technical skills will be crucial to success. 
  • Develop cultural understanding and become globally engaged. Our featured programs all emphasize intercultural exchange and increased cultural competence through webinars, lunch and learns, community connections and more.

Global virtual internships provide additional benefits, including:

  • A cost-effective way to gain international experience. While there is a program fee to make all of the services and support possible, students do not have the added costs of travel, housing, or in-country commuting. 
  • More focused work. Without the typical office distractions and temptation to pull interns into other projects, students can focus on assigned projects with increased productivity and improved outcomes. 
  • Safety and comfort. Working from home means students do not have to consider health or safety concerns.
  • Flexibility. Because employers are often in a different time zone, students have more flexibility when they work, allowing them to work around class schedules, other jobs, and family or personal obligations.

Virtual internships are a valuable and exciting learning option for those who want to engage globally from home. Visit NC State Study Abroad Global Virtual Internships to learn about our featured virtual programs and how to apply. You can also go to Study Abroad’s On Campus Global Learning to see other ways to engage globally from home. 

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