Center for International Programs - Semester/Year Abroad

Career Development



American Institute of Foreign Study, "Student Guide to Study Abroad & Career Development" 

Frontiers, "Employer Attitudes towards Study Abroad."

Global Competency

Market your Study Abroad Experience


Abroad View

Student Branding


Discover Skills you have acquired & developed: A worksheet for self-assessment

Study Abroad Resume: A worksheet for reflection


The opportunities in the international sector are vast. Students can work for a few weeks in a rain forest in Costa Rica, spend a summer consulting in China, help orphans in Argentina, or teach for a year in the Dominican Republic. International opportunities depend on what type of job or internship they are looking for and in what country. With any international opportunity, students should take into consideration housing and visa issues as well as insurance matters and other logistical items. Students must consider what is included in any international package or job/internship they accept.

Opportunities in international business for U.S. students who do not have authorization to work outside the U.S. are often in the form of internships. If students are interested in international business, they should check out eRecruiting and look at international companies career websites. International companies that have posted jobs or internships for their international offices at Duke include: Accenture, Bank of America, Deutsche Bank, JP Morgan, McKinsey Consulting. Many students and recent graduates find international jobs and internships through the European Career Fair in Boston in February.

Opportunities in the volunteer, non-profit, or NGO sector are often short-term in the summer or for a year or two after graduation. These positions can include working with children in orphanages, community and public health, community research and outreach, human rights, environmental positions, and more. Many international volunteer opportunities are posted on and other non-profit run websites such asservenet. In addition, several international internships with non-profits or non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are posted on Idealist. Often these positions are unpaid but some funding may be available for room or board or ideas for fundraising, or housing may be provided. Opportunities in this sector include: the Peace Corps, Humanity in Action, Amigos de las Americas (Latin America), Family Health International Fellowship Program in Malawi, and the American Youth Understanding Diabetes Abroad (AYUDA) in Ecuador. It is important to keep in mind that many large international NGOs and organizations such as World Bank or the UN require fieldwork, or additional experience or education. These short-term international experiences are an excellent way to gain exposure and knowledge in this area.

Often, the most convenient or best way to get a job overseas after graduation is by teaching English abroad or teaching in international schools. In many Asian countries a teaching certificate is not necessary and students do not need to know the native language of the country. For teaching in Europe especially western Europe or in some international schools, a teaching certificate is necessary. Many TEFL (Teaching English as a Foreign Language) or TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) certificate programs exist. Usually these programs will include a placement or career counseling/support component to them. Often teaching programs are for 1 year or require at least a 10-month contract. There are many recruiting firms such as Allestra Recruiting and US-China Educational Exchange who will place you in a teaching position with one of their partner schools.  Examples of teaching English or teaching abroad employers include New Horizons program in the Dominican Republic, the English Program in Korea, the JETprogram in Japan, and TEFL in Prague.

International Education
Many students are discovering careers in international education. International education includes ESL teaching or teaching English abroad, working abroad with the state department or government, or working with international education organizations or nonprofits and more. The Association of International Educators (NAFSA) offers students helpful information about how to search for jobs within international education and describes what opportunities are available and how to find them.

More international opportunities exist beyond these three sectors including working for the state department, working for a technological company, conducting academic research, working in a higher education institution or having an international fellowship or grant such as a Fulbright Scholarship

For short-term summer opportunities including visa sponsorship:

For international careers:

For teaching abroad:

For volunteering abroad:

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Contact the Center for Career Development and talk to an advisor; learn how to edit your resume & cover letter to reflect your abroad experience.

Attend the "Work Abroad Workshop" on Tuesday, October 22nd, 11:15am-12:15pm in Mandeville 103, sponsored by the CDC and CIP. Attended the workshop? Submit your feedback here!