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  • Locations: Various, Various
  • Program Terms: Fall Semester, Spring Break, Spring Semester, Summer, Winter Break
  • Dates / Deadlines
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA (Undergraduate): 2.0 Minimum GPA (Graduate): 3.0
Number of Credits Offered: 1-12 Eligible Population: 01 Freshman, 02 Sophomore, 03 Junior, 04 Senior, Graduate, PhD
Type of Program: Internship Click here for a definition of this term Area of Study: Accounting, Applied Science, Linguistics, Management, Marketing, Minor in Business, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Medical Laboratory Science, Middle East Studies, Mild Disabilities, Multimedia, Arabic, Music and Well-Being, Music, Native American and Indigenous Studies, Neuroscience, Nonprofit Studies, Nursing, Nutrition, Ocean and Estuarine Science, Paleontology, Philosophy and Law, Art and Visual Technology, Philosophy, Physics, Political Philosophy, Professional Writing, Psychology, Public Health, Public Policy and Management, Recreation Management, Rehabilitation Science, Religious Studies, Art History, Russian, Russian and Eurasian Studies, Senior Housing Administration, Severe Disabilities, Social Justice, Social Work, Sociology, Software Engineering, Spanish, Sport and American Culture, Arts and Social Change, Sport and Computer Game Design, Sport Communication, Sport Management, Statistics, Sustainability Studies, Sustainable Enterprise, Systems Engineering, Teaching English as a Second Language, Theater, Tourism, Arts Management, Urban and Suburban Studies, Visual Impairment and Blindness, Web Design, Women and Gender Studies, Geography and Geoinformation Science, Honors, Government and International Policy, Global and Community Health, Korean, Business, Asia-Pacific and Northeast Asian Studies, Climate Dynamics, Assistive Technology, Astronomy, Athletic Training, African and African American Studies, Atmospheric Science, Audio Production, Aviation Flight Training and Management, Bioengineering, Bioinformatics, Biology, Business Analytics, Chemistry, Childhood Studies, Chinese, Aging Studies, Civil and Infrastructure Engineering, Classical Studies, Coaching, Communication, Community Health, Computational and Data Sciences, Computer Engineering, Computer Game Design, Computer Science, Conflict Analysis and Resolution, American Government, Consciousness and Transformation, Conservation Biology, Conservation, Creative Writing, Criminology Law and Society, Cyber Security Engineering, Dance, Data Analysis, Earth Science, Economic Systems Design, Ancient Mediterranean Art and Archaeology, Economics, Education Studies, Electrical Engineering, English, Entrepreneurship, Environmental Engineering, Environmental Policy, Environmental Science, Ethnomusicology, Film and Video Studies, Anthropology, Finance, Folklore and Mythology, Foreign Languages, Forensic Psychology, Forensic Science, French, Geographic Information Systems, Geography, Geology, German, Applied Behavior Analysis, Global Affairs, Global Systems, Graphic Design, Health Administration, Health and Social Policy, Health Communication, Health Information Technology, Health Promotion, Health Psychology, History, Applied Computer Science, Human Development and Family Science, Immigration Studies, Industrial/Organizational Psychology, Information Systems and Operations Management, Information Technology, Integrative Studies, International Security, International/Comparative Studies, Islamic Studies, Applied Information Technology, Italian Studies, Japanese Studies, Jazz Studies, Journalism, Judaic Studies, Kinesiology, Latin American Studies, Latin, Leadership, Legal Studies
Click here for a definition of this term Study Abroad Host: Global Education Office Click here for a definition of this term Course Equivalency Database: View Approved Courses
Program eligible for VA Benefits: NO
Program Description:

Build Your Own Internship Program

Various Locations

Build Your Own Internship
Note: This program is open to Mason students only, both undergraduate and graduate students. For the most up to date COVID study abroad policies, click here.
Read about our Summer 2022 Mason Global Internship students by clicking through the tabs here.

Build Your Own Internship Program: 

If you have a very specific internship placement in mind or are looking through our program list and not seeing your location of choice, you still have options! You can “Build Your Own Internship,” where you research and secure your own internship while working with the GEO office to receive relevant academic credit. Students are responsible for finding this internship, housing, and travel arrangements independently, which is what differs from the existing internship placement programs that GEO offers. There are many internship placements students find that provide them guidance on housing. 

Beginning Fall 2022, students who participate in the Build Your Own Internship program will receive the following travel grant. This is only applicable to travel internships, not remote internships:
  • 1-3 credits: $500 grant
  • 4-6+ credits: $1000 grant


1-6 credits (more credits may be possible in specific circumstances)

You will take an online, asynchronous class during your internship in order to receive credits. Your grade is based on the work you complete for the Mason internship class online, which will include a final report from your internship supervisor.
Course Options
Default Credit: You are automatically approved to receive one of the course credit options below for your internship. 

Undergraduate Credit
Graduate Credit

Earn 1-6 credits for a summer or winter internship or externship. A 3-6 credit option is an internship, while a 1 or 2 credit option is considered an externship (a mini-internship/job shadowing experience). Students must complete a minimum of 45 hours per credit requested. If you are interested in more than 6 credits, please email to see what may be possible.

Seeking Different Credits: Students wanting different credits can petition their department, however, these approvals are not guaranteed, and there may be additional eligibility requirements. Look up potential alternative credits and their requirements in the Mason Course Catalog.  There will be a questionnaire in the application process where students indicate the credit they would like to receive and we will provide you with the form required for approval if they indicate they are seeking a different credit. This process is handled entirely by the student, not by GEO.
In the past, GEO internship students on various programs have been individually approved by their departments for these credits. Please note that these credits requirements may be applicable in some locations but not others based on career field availability and flexibility of placement logistics in the country. Check with to discuss more. 
Note for School of Business Applicants: 
The School of Business has specific credit policy for internships for their majors which excludes internships that are not offered in the School of Business from a student’s degree. Students with a major in the School of Business have the following options:

1. Enroll in a School of Business internship course (this requires you meet their qualifications). You will be responsible for the tuition for that course and the GEO Internship program fee. Speak to your Business advisor for more information on how this may apply to your degree requirements.


2. Earn INTS 390 or CONF 370 credit for general elective credit. You will be responsible only for the GEO Internship program fee. 


3. Earn internship course credits towards your minor or double major if it is outside the School of Business. The GEO internship credits will apply to credits in the minor or double major. Consult with this department to discuss if they will count prior to participation.

Either way, you are encouraged to talk to your academic advisor about this now to make the most informed decision for you.

Internship Placements:

While GEO can recommend some websites and resources, students are responsible for researching and securing their own internships. This is an independent, self-driven process. Each will apply directly with the organization they intend to work for and obtain a job description to submit to GEO as part of the application process. Both the student and the internship organization host will complete GEO paperwork to support the credit.
General Internship Search Resources
Here are a few of our recommended job search platforms which students have found effective.
Specific Internship/Job Shadowing Opportunities
Below are some initial ideas for your Build Your Own Internship search, although there are many more out there! Please note that Mason does not partner with these organizations and you would contact them directly for opportunities. 
  • IAESTE Paid STEM and Applied Arts Internships: 80+ locations worldwide and a wide range of lengths. Students are paid a stipend based on cost of living in that location. Students must be currently enrolled or a recent graduate (up to one year) on a Bachelor's, Master's degree or PhD at the time of application. 
  • US Department of State Paid Internship Program: Semester long full-time internships. If placed in an embassy abroad, students can receive Build Your Own credits. Applicants must be US citizens and be an Undergraduate (Junior or Senior) or Graduate student.
  • Atlantis: Hospital shadowing experience for pre-med undergraduates. Locations is Spain, Italy, and Portugal for 1-6 weeks. Financial aid opportunities.
  • Doctors in Italy: Shadow doctors in Rome during their day to day rounds and learn through hands-on experiences about the healthcare system there. 1-5 week programs available.
  • Emzingo: Global Impact Fellowships in Peru, South Africa, or Spain allow students to intern on consulting projects with local nonprofit or social enterprises.
  • Frederick Douglass Global Fellowship: A fully funded, competitive program for students of color. The program is in the spirit of Douglass himself with special emphasis on leadership, social justice, agitation for positive change and cross-cultural understanding. The 2023 location for this fellowship is in Dublin, Ireland. 4 week long programs.
  • Global Engagement Institute (GEI): Intern remotely or in person in Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, or Vietnam. There are many fields available, including but not limited to Mental Health, Maternal & Newborn Health, Education, and Economic Empowerment. Custom placements have fixed start dates but may also be available year-round, with flexible duration (minimum 4 weeks). Email for more details.
  • Kaya Responsible Travel: Internship placements throughout Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Wide range of social impact placements, including engineering, kinesiology, sports development, healthcare, education, IT, conservation and more. Year round and a wide range of dates.
  • Omprakash: Search their partner network to connect directly with vetted grassroots social impact organizations and apply for their volunteer and internship opportunities.
  • Swiss Embassy: The ThinkSwiss Research Scholarship gives funding for research opportunities students secure at Swiss universities.
  • The Intern Group: Intern remotely or in person in 14 global cities. Placements available for all majors and career paths. Rolling admissions and start dates year-round. Programs have a fee which includes housing, 24x7 support, and a variety of career, cultural, technical, and social resources and events. 
  • Think Pacific: Travel and virtual internships in Fiji focused on: sustainable development. Opportunities available with social enterprises, non-profit organizations, and government departments. Partners with the University of the South Pacific, where interns are paired with a local student mentor there.
  • University of Applied Sciences: Intern in Germany in fields such as: Materials Design, Media Projects, Mobile Computing, Nanoanalytics and Biophysics, and Web Applications. Scholarships and language classes possible.
  • VA Corps: Internship programs in a range of fields in Cape Town. Check out virtual internships opportunities here.

Program Cost

In-State Tuition/Mandatory Student Fees + $60
The cost is the equivalent of posted in-state tuition and fees for the number of credits requested + $60 International Emergency Medical Insurance for those traveling. Those completing virtual internships will not require the $60 insurance. For example, undergraduate traveling students would be:
  • 1 credit internship - $619
  • 3 credit internship - $1736
  • 6 credit internship - $3411
  • 12 credit internship - $6761
This will be put as two separate charges, including a GEO Tuition charge and a GEO Trip Fee charge (for travel programs that include insurance) on your Student Account. There are no additional costs from Mason. Graduate student tuition charges will be based on the in-state amount for the student’s respective degree. If you are completing an online degree program, you will be charged the in-state tuition amount for your online program. Non-degree seeking graduate students will be charged based on CHSS in-state graduate tuition.

Beginning Fall 2022, students who participate in the Build Your Own Internship program will receive the following travel grant:
  • 1-3 credits: $500 grant
  • 4-6+ credits: $1000 grant
Students must meet all eligibility requirements of the Build Your Own Internship program and be committed participants in the program to receive this grant. Awards are paid to the applicant’s Mason Student Account by the start of their study abroad term and will be applied to any outstanding balance on the account first. If there is no outstanding balance the student can submit a Refund Request form to the Student Account Office to receive the funds. International students are eligible for this grant; however additional paperwork may be required after they have been selected and the amount may be subject to taxes.
 * This grant is considered financial aid and receipt of an award may have an effect on your existing financial aid package.
  • Tuition
  • International Emergency Medical Insurance 
Not Included:
  • Internship placement
  • Airport pickup upon arrival
  • Housing: Housing options will vary by internship location. It's highly likely that student's will have to find and secure their own housing with the Build Your Own Internship Program.
  • Flights
  • Meals
  • Visas: Internship locations may require a visa. It is the student's responsibility to lodge their own visa. For more information, please visit
  • Personal expenses and cultural excursions
  • Visa and pre-departure guidance and support
  • Passport fees
  • Covid-19 testing
  • Vaccinations
The Global Education Office does not offer in-country support. Speak with your employer and local resources for information on support and resources that might be available to you. The Global Education Office has a U.S. based GEO Health and Safety Specialist on-call to support you.
*Do not purchase airfare until you receive notice from the Global Education Office via email that you are approved for the GEO program, if this approval impacts whether you will complete the internship. Students who fail to follow the guidelines GEO sends out will be responsible for applicable costs of changing their flights if needed due to delay in approval process.  When the time comes to purchase airfare, GEO will be recommending the purchase of Flight Interruption and Cancellation Insurance. 
Program Payments
The full program fee is charged to your Mason Student Account. You will always see a separate, extra GEO tuition charge for this course. The cost will not be included with other courses that you enroll in for the Semester. 
Final Payment: The final balance payment is made through the Mason Bill + Payment system. Payment is due according to the Mason Payment Schedule.  
• You can make your final payment in the Mason Bill + Payment system even if you do not see the GEO program charge on your Student Account.
• George Mason University applies payments to outstanding charges first. If you have an outstanding balance from a previous semester, your payments will first go to paying that charge. You will still be responsible for the GEO charge.
Financial Aid:
In most cases, financial aid (federal, state, institutional financial aid, scholarships, grants or loans) can be used to finance study abroad. It is the student’s responsibility to check with the Office of Financial Aid to review their financial aid package. The Office of Financial Aid is the only office that can determine your aid eligibility.
Meeting with your financial aid officer prior to applying to study abroad will help you understand if, how much, and when your aid can be used to study abroad.
Confirmation of your financial aid award may not be available until registration and billing for the term in question is final. If aid eligibility changes, or the amount of aid disbursed is lower than anticipated, students are responsible for all remaining account balances or risk late fees, holds on their accounts, and program dismissal.
To assist students in the processing of their financial aid, GEO will communicate with the Office of Financial Aid those students who plan to utilize financial aid for their specific study abroad program through their application with GEO.  Please note there is no guarantee to students that their aid can be utilized for their specific study abroad program.

If you plan to use federal, state, institutional financial aid, scholarships, grants or loans to finance your study abroad, you must:
• Mark “Yes” to “Do you plan to use Financial Aid to finance your program (federal, state, institutional financial aid, scholarships, grants or loans)?” in your profile in
After acceptance:
•Complete the Financial Aid questionnaire item in your application.
Schedule an appointment with your financial aid officer.
* Students must be enrolled at least half-time for federal loans and the majority of grant funds. Please refer to the Financial Aid website for a definition of half-time for undergraduate and graduate students.
VA Benefits: This program is ineligible for VA Benefits.

Withdrawal and Refund Policy: All participants are bound by the Mason GEO Withdrawal and Refund Policy.

Payment Instructions
For more information on payments, financial aid, and information for non-Mason students:
GEO offers a number of need-based and merit-based scholarships. All Mason students are welcome to apply:


This program is open to all students who meet the GPA requirement, have a strong application and are in Good Standing status with GMU. This program is for GMU students only.

How to Apply
  • Identify a country or region and an internship you are interested in online.
  • Schedule a meeting with Experiential Program Manager. If you are unsure of where to look or how to narrow down internship options, GEO staff can provide guidance throughout but students must lead the follow up research.
  • Complete the Mason application online by the due date, including the job description form.
  • If you are participating in a program where there is a US Department of State travel warning, additional paperwork and discussions may be required.
  • Apply to the internships that you researched if you have not already done so. You can do this at any stage of the process.
  • Consult with your Academic Advisor to determine the credit you will request for this internship and with a Financial Aid Counselor to see your funding options if relevant.
  • Once you secure an internship and upload an official internship offer letter to GEO, you will receive a status update from our office. Once accepted by GEO, you are responsible for finalizing and purchasing the following: flights, housing, food, transportation, visa, etc. Being accepted by GEO means that your internship opportunity has been vetted and you have been approved by to receive academic credit for this. You should not buy your flights or make non-refundable arrangements until you are accepted by GEO.
  • Submit all required paperwork to GEO staff by the deadlines shared.
  • Travel abroad and begin your internship!
Application Deadlines:
Winter: November 10th 
Spring: November 10th
Summer: April 10th
Fall: July 10th
Note: Each of these dates are flexible. If you found an opportunity after these deadlines, please contact the Program Administrator to confirm whether this is possible. 

Application requirements:*

Mandatory Meeting: With Experiential Programs Administrator

Passport Status Questionnaire: You do not need a passport to complete this questionnaire or the application. However, if you do not have a valid passport, you should begin applying for one now. The Global Education Office offers Passport Grants to help.

Resume/CV: Your resume (Curriculum Vitae or CV) is given to a potential internship host along with your personal statement. 

Internship Questionnaire and Job Description: This provides details on the internship you are requesting credit for and the official Job Description from your employer. The Job Description can either be a link to an online posting, a screenshot of an email from your employer sharing job details, or a description on your employer’s letter head.

Internship Offer Letter: Once you are offered the internship by your employer, you are required to upload your offer letter. Your application is not considered complete until this is uploaded. This Offer Letter can be a screenshot of an email from your employer sharing the offer, or a description on your employer’s letter head. It must include:
  • your name
  • the name, contact details, and signature of your employer
  • the dates and hours you will work
Signature Documents: Read and electronically "sign" the documents regarding the acknowledgement of risk, the pre-departure orientation, and your financial responsibility.

Application Instructions:
For Mason applicants (pdf)
Travel Links
Mason Links
Mason University Career Services Resources (find out how Mason Career Services may help you prepare for your internship, or how to prepare for an interview)
Mason Career and Internship Guide
Mason University Career Services Resume and Cover Letter Review Services
Questions? Contact:

GEO Experiential Programs Manager
Kelly McNulty
(she, her)
Student Office Hours


Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2023 04/10/2023 ** Rolling Admission 05/22/2023 08/04/2023
NOTE: Dates flexible within Summer term.
Fall Semester 2023 07/10/2023 ** Rolling Admission 08/21/2023 12/08/2023
NOTE: Dates flexible within Winter term.

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.