In the USA there is a differentiation between an internship and a traineeship. As they seem very similar it can often be very confusing.
- Internship: you can apply for an internship if you are currently enrolled as a student in a country outside of the US or if you graduated at most 12 months before the start of your Internship.
- Traineeship: you can apply for a traineeship if you have a degree or a professional certificate from a post-secondary academic institution and have at least 1 year of related work experience outside of the USA. Alternatively, if you have 5 years of related work experience in the program field you want to apply for, you can apply for a traineeship.
Requirements for an Internship or Traineeship in the USA
To make sure you can successfully complete your internship or traineeship program in the USA, there are a few requirements you have to adhere to:
- Candidates must be highly proficient in English. They must be able to successfully interact in an English speaking environment.
- As mandated by the US government, candidates must also be enrolled in a post-secondary institution and be pursuing a degree in a serious manner. It is necessary to have successfully completed at least 1 semester of post-secondary school.
- The last requirement is that you must be able to prove that you have sufficient funds to cover your entire stay in the USA – the minimum requirement being $1000 a month. However, if you are going to be compensated by the company you will be working for, this will be subtracted from the minimum requirement needed.
Then, if everything is accepted, you will receive a DS-2019 form, which is a multi-purpose document issued by a U.S. government-approved institution (or organization) certifying that your admission into a program has been accepted and that you have demonstrated sufficient financial resources to stay in the U.S. for a certain amount of time.
Internship and Traineeship Program Fields for the USA
For your internship in the USA, you have to choose a field in which you are currently studying. And in the case of a traineeship, you have to choose a field in which you have significant experience.
We offer placements in the following occupational categories:
- Business and Management
- Accounting and Finance
- Marketing and Communication
- I.T. & Engineering
- Architecture & Graphic Design
- Hospitality and Tourism
Click here to find a list of our vacancies
Duration of your Internship / Traineeship in the USA
An internship or traineeship in the USA must last at least 3 months. However, it is very difficult to find an internship for such a short period of time, as most employers wish to have interns for at least 6 months.
In addition, to carry out an internship in the US, you will be required to possess a J1 visa. This visa has a maximum duration of 12 months in the case of an internship, and of 18 months for a traineeship (except for the hospitality sector for which it is 12 months).
Then, it would be possible to extend your stay in the USA to the maximum duration of the program. If the extension is accepted, you will receive a new DS-2019 form which will show the extension. However, we recommend that you decide on the optimum amount of time beforehand. Extending your duration will include extra costs, as you will have to complete a new DS-2019 form.
If you are looking for more information on how to extend your J1 visa click here.
Internship & Traineeship Compensation
The majority of the internships and traineeships in the USA are paid. Then, the amount will of course vary depending on:
- the field you will be working in,
- how many months you will be working at the company,
- your own work experience,
- and the company itself.
However, at Internships USA, we provide our candidates with placements that pay at least $500 per month for internships that last between 6 and 12 months and at least $1000 for placements that last more than 12 months.
Some companies may also offer other benefits such as accommodation, food or transportation. Therefore it is best to properly discuss this topic with the company beforehand.