Self-sourced international internships

Find out how you can select your own internship opportunity for the ENGR90033 or CHEN90028 Internship subject – applications now open for Summer 2022.

Due to travel restrictions associated with COVID-19, we can only approve applications for overseas internships for students located in their home countries due to the travel ban, who are taking an internship in that same country, or for students taking internships with overseas companies, where the student is working remotely from Australia (or a third country). For further information email engit-placements@unimelb.edu.au

An international internship is any internship where you are working for a company based outside Australia. You can be working at a host company in your home country if you are currently overseas, or you can work remotely for an overseas company if you are based in Australia (or in a third country). If you have secured your own internship overseas, you may be eligible to apply to use it as part of the internship subjects. We can currently assess applications to undertake internships for overseas students who are studying remotely overseas and who are also citizens of these countries, or for students who want to work remotely from Melbourne for a company abroad.

Note: we most commonly assess applications for the following regions and all applications for on-site work are dependent on the local COVID-19 situation:

  • Mainland China
  • Hong Kong SAR
  • Taiwan
  • India
  • Singapore
  • Malaysia
  • Japan
  • New Zealand
  • North America
  • Western Europe
  • Peru
  • Chile

For other destinations, if you are a citizen of the country, contact engit-placements@unimelb.edu.au to enquire.

  • Subject eligibility

    Please refer to the Handbook for eligibility for each subject:

    There is no minimum WAM requirement for self-sourced internships for ENGR90033.

    If you are unsure of your course requirements or elective credits, you should book a course advice appointment.

    Eligible students and countries

    Due to the current DFAT travel advisory level applications will take longer than normal for us to assess. We will be limiting approvals to:

    • Students who are already studying remotely in their home countries
    • Students who want to work remotely from Melbourne for a company overseas.

    We cannot approve travel out of Australia for the purposes of taking an internship overseas.

    Students working remotely from Australia

    If you are working remotely from Australia, note that Australian employment law applies. This includes (but is by no means limited to) stipulations such as Australian minimum wage and payment of superannuation. You should ensure that your host company is aware of this.

    If you are working remotely from Australia, and are the holder of a student visa, the working hours restrictions associated with that visa will apply, even if your host company is based overseas. International students on student visas are limited to 20 hours per week for both paid and unpaid internships, as ENGR90033 Internship is an elective subject and not a compulsory registered part of your course. The summer semester is counted as an enrolled semester at University and so this restriction will apply during that time. All international students on student visas should ensure compliance with the working hours limitations attached to your visa.

    If in doubt about these issues, contact engit-placements@unimelb.edu.au.

  • Plan to succeed

    Students who prepare effectively for the internship subject are more likely to succeed in securing an opportunity.

    Most internships you apply for will require you to address selection criteria via a cover letter and a resumé. It is important to ensure you research and tailor your application documents for the local job market in the country where you are applying. The requirements for documents such as resumés vary by country.

    Keep an eye out for any relevant information sessions listed via Careers Online and the MSExpress newsletter as specific information sessions are held periodically for students applying for jobs overseas.

    There are two key areas in which preparation should be focused:

    Create or update your application documents

    Internship employers will be interested in the skills and experiences you have gained so far. These experiences will be conveyed via your application documents. To ensure you are able to put an effective application forward, consider if you need to add to your resumé by:

    • Undertaking some volunteer work
    • Working in a part time or casual role
    • Joining and contributing to a professional association
    • Getting active in your professional student club
    • Brushing up on skills in demand in your industry
    • Practising your written and spoken communication skills
    • Keeping up to date with developments in your industry

    Set up a plan a semester prior to when you expect to undertake your internship and upskill in areas where you have gaps.

    Prepare for interviews

    If your application is shortlisted for an opportunity you may be invited to an interview for the internship. A range of career orientated and professional skill workshops are advertised on Careers Online which you are encouraged to attend prior to an interview. Before your interview you should also look to undertake the following:

    • Study the organisations website or look for articles about the organisation in the media
    • Re-read your application
    • Review the most common interview questions [PDF]
    • Review the selection criteria and ensure you can provide interesting examples to demonstrate the skills that are listed
    • Prepare some questions for your interviewer to ask at the conclusion of the interview
  • Resources

    If in doubt about any aspect of employment law please seek legal advice. The UMSU Legal service, accessible via the Student Union, may be able to assist with this.

    Utilise resources accessible to you whilst you are a student to gain a competitive edge in your approach:

  • Find opportunities

    Sourcing your own internship will involve you contacting potential companies and people to explore possible opportunities.

    Before you start doing this, it is important that you spend some time creating a targeted approach though identifying industries, companies, projects and contacts of interest. This will assist you in being clear about what it is you are looking for and will additionally help you to build knowledge of possible careers in your discipline area. Further, you will make a better impression when you are making contact with industry professionals if you are well informed and clear about what it is you are hoping to achieve.

    Before you start contacting organisations about possible internships, ensure you are clear about requirements for ENGR90033 and CHEN90028 Internships. See the Submit your application below section for further details.

    Explore tools and resources and research independently as part of your journey toward your future goals.

    Self-sourcing your own internship can be daunting but it needn’t be if you approach it with a growth mindset toward your own personal goals. There are a number of resources to assist you in speculative outreach to organisations on the EmployMe platform including:

    Note: Log in via this link first – EmployMe – and then you will be able to access the links above.

    Ensure you attend relevant sessions advertised on Careers Online and ENG and IT Calendar throughout the semester to assist with your outreach strategies.

  • Submit your application

    In order to apply to use a self-sourced internship as part of ENGR90033 Internship or CHEN90028 Chemical Engineering Internship, you must complete a detailed application form, which includes a risk assessment and asks you details about your host company. These applications may take a few weeks to assess.

    All students who wish to undertake an internship overseas, or with an overseas company, must complete this. Your internship approval is subject to an assessment for suitability both in terms of your position description and, also a risk assessment to ensure that appropriate workplace safety provisions are in place at your proposed host company.

    The Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology reserves the right to not approve overseas internships where there are concerns about the level of risk involved or the position description or host organisation is deemed unsuitable.

    You can download an example application form to find out what information you need to apply.

    The online application form can be found at the bottom of this page.

  • Subject enrolment

    Agreement, enrolment and OHS training

    If your internship is approved, enrolment will be permitted via email into ENGR90033 Internship once the appropriate legal agreement has been returned by both you and the host organisation.

    You will not be able to self-enrol into the subject until this time. The agreement will be managed by the Faculty of Engineering and Information Technology.

    Once returned, you will be sent an approval email which will detail the steps you must undertake to submit an enrolment variation to Stop1.

    To remain enrolled in the subject you will need to undertake OHS training and ensure that you hold a valid visa if required.

    For further details regarding subject requirements, refer to the Handbook.

  • Key dates

    Key dates for internships taking place in Summer 2022:

    August 2020

    • Applications open for Summer 2022.

    5 November 2021

    • Deadline for submitting an application for a self-sourced overseas internship.

    Late November/early December 2021

    • Internship begins.

    February/March 2022

    • Internship concludes.
  • Cost

    Regular subject tuition fees will apply to this subject.

    Find out what fees you're required to pay.

  • Information for international students

    International students on student visas are limited to 20 hours per week for both paid/unpaid internships while you are physically located in Australia. This applies even if your host company is based overseas.

    All international students on student visas should ensure that they are compliant with the working hours limitations attached to your visa. ENGR90033 Internship & CHEN90028 Chemical Engineering Internship are elective subjects which may count towards your working hours, even if your internship is unpaid.

    For further information  see the Department of Home Affairs website: Check visa details and conditions and/or contact engit-placements@unimelb.edu.au.