Seeing yourself and your world through an unfamiliar lens can have a significant impact on your studies, deepen your understanding of yourself, and challenge your assumptions about the world. In today's globalized world, it is critical that students learn to appreciate and function in multiple cultures and contexts. Many of today’s most pressing issues are global in nature, and gaining a firsthand experience abroad will enable you to understand these issues from new perspectives. We encourage you to explore the many opportunities to study, intern, and research overseas through the programs listed below. Other opportunities abroad, especially for post-graduate activities, are available through various fellowships.
The Office of International Programs (OIP) should be your first stop when planning an international experience as part of your undergraduate career at Princeton, and we encourage you to visit either in person or online as early as possible in your undergraduate career. The office can advise you about opportunities to study and intern abroad, provide lists of approved study programs and summer internship placements abroad, discuss available funding, provide ongoing support while you are participating in a sponsored international program, and advise you on undergraduate and post-graduate fellowships.You should also discuss your interest in study abroad and international internships with your academic adviser and departmental representative.
Bridge Year Program
The Bridge Year Program allows a select group of newly admitted undergraduates to defer their enrollment in order to spend nine months of volunteer service in another country. Participants serve the community by engaging in challenging, meaningful work at local organizations, such as schools, non-profit organizations, and clinics. During the program, participants work with and for others, live with families in the community, learn the local language, and strengthen intercultural skills.
Study Abroad Program
The Study Abroad Program allows students the opportunity to receive a semester or full year of Princeton credit while studying in an approved program or university abroad. Study abroad adds an important dimension to on-campus studies and provides special focus for departmental work. The program is open to spring-semester sophomores, all juniors, and fall-semester seniors. You can choose from exchange programs, Princeton-affiliated programs, and over 100 approved programs in 42 countries.
Princeton also offers a wide array of summer study abroad programs ranging from intensive language programs to Global Seminars run by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies (PIIRS), to programs in areas like archaeology or marine biology. It is also possible to apply for Princeton credit for courses offered by other study abroad providers.
International Internship Program
The International Internship Program (IIP) offers guidance and financial support to undergraduates who wish to undertake a summer internship abroad. IIP staff can help you select an internship from a list of placements pre-arranged by IIP or help you research and secure your own internship independently. Interns have held positions in the media, education, public health, government and nongovernmental organizations, as well as in financial and research institutions. IIP also coordinates the Princeton in France Program and the German Summer Work Program, which provide placements in France and German-speaking countries, respectively.
Opportunities to spend time overseas to conduct research are available through a number of different avenues.
The PEI/Grand Challenges (PEI/GC) Internship Program offers Princeton undergraduates the opportunity to complement their academic interests with hands-on independent research and project experiences during the summer, both in the U.S. and abroad. Students interested in exploring global environmental problems related to energy and climate, infectious disease and global health, sustainable development in resource-scarce regions of the world, and environmental sustainability are encouraged to apply.
The Grand Challenges Program provides opportunities for students to learn about the Grand Challenges themes of Energy, Development, and Health and prepares them to address complex environmental problems in their future studies and careers. This preparation includes introductory and advanced-level courses (several of which involve field research in overseas locations, including Bermuda, Kenya, Norway, Saudi Arabia, and South Africa), faculty-mentored internships, and opportunities for independent study and research on campus and abroad. The program is open to all students regardless of academic major or area of concentration.
Thesis Research Funding
All University senior thesis funding opportunities are available through the Student Activities Funding Engine (SAFE). A.B. undergraduates seeking support for senior thesis research may apply for funding from the Office of the Dean of the College.