Transforming Futures: Summer Internship Scholarship Program
The Institute for Social Transformation is excited to offer an internship scholarship program called Transforming Futures. The goal of the program is to open up opportunities and remove financial barriers for first-generation, underrepresented, and low-income students at UC Santa Cruz so they can participate in career-advancing non-credit summer internships. We know that internships provide an important experiential learning opportunity for students to gain professional experience, build professional networks, create future career pathways, and are an important component of student success. Unfortunately, a number of meaningful internships are unpaid, particularly at nonprofit or government organizations, and therefore not an option for many students with limited financial resources. In order to expand opportunities for these students, Transforming Futures provides summer internship scholarships.
Transforming Futures scholarship awards will be up to $7,500 for summer interns. Award amounts will differ based on financial need and the level of students’ expected summer living expenses. Internships should be with off-campus employers, primarily those who are not able to provide fully paid internships, such as nonprofit organizations, government entities, small businesses or start-ups. The location can be anywhere in the world.
Our program provides scholarships once students have independently arranged an internship possibility. We encourage students to work with existing internship coordinators and advisors at UC Santa Cruz to identify internship opportunities (see internship resources below). This program will be administered by the Institute for Social Transformation in the Division of Social Sciences and we are partnering with UCSC Career Success and Educational Opportunity Program (EOP). Currently, scholarships are limited to UC Santa Cruz undergraduate students in the Social Sciences, however we hope to expand the program even further in future years.
Applications for Summer 2023 are due May 1, 2023 (11:59PM)
Step 1: Prepare Early and Utilize Campus Resources
Please start early and give yourself plenty of time to apply. Priority will be given to students who meet the eligibility criteria (see below) and have done some advance preparation before submitting an application, including:
- meet with a UCSC Career Coach to explore internship and career options, prep for interviews, get resume feedback, etc.
- meet with an EOP counselor or peer advisor to develop a plan for student success and work out a summer budget
- meet with an internship coordinator in your department, major, or field of interest, if available
- identify a faculty mentor who will provide guidance throughout the internship
- arrange a potential full-time summer internship (see below)
Step 2: Find an Internship
You must arrange for an internship before you submit your application. The application will require that students have arranged full-time non-credit summer internship (8-10 weeks in length at least 35-40 hours/week). After consulting with the campus resources below, students should contact organizations they would like to intern for and have the potential internship supervisor submit an internship agreement form indicating their support for having the student as a full-time intern for summer 2023, if the scholarship is awarded.
We strongly recommend not having additional summer jobs or taking summer classes while working at a full-time internship.
Step 3: Submit your Application
Please note: you should have all your materials ready before you start the application. For assistance with writing a resume, take advantage of the Career Center resources. For assistance with your summer budget, please work with an EOP counselor.
The application consists of:
UC Santa Cruz and Division of Social Sciences Internship Resources
To be eligible for this scholarship, students must independently arrange a full-time non-credit summer internship (8-10 weeks in length, working 35-40 hours/week).
Find an Internship in Handshake
Additional UCSC Resources
- Campus partners:
- Social Sciences department internship resources:
- Other potential resources:
Eligibility/Who Can Apply
- Student eligibility
- Applicants must be UC Santa Cruz undergraduate students majoring in a social science discipline or program and must be in good academic standing.
- Priority will be given to students who have EOP status (i.e first-generation, low income, under-represented/BIPOC, undocumented, former foster youth).
- Priority will be given to students who are rising sophomores, juniors and seniors (i.e. returning to UCSC for the academic year following their summer internship). Graduating seniors are eligible if they are on the job market (i.e. not planning on attending graduate school in the fall) and are willing to participate in a fall workshop reflecting on their internship experience.
- Students must commit to a full-time non-credit summer internship (8-10 weeks in length at least 35-40 hours/week).
- Students should not be enrolled in field study programs at the same time as their internship
- Internship site eligibility
- Internship sites must be able to demonstrate the capacity to provide a quality learning and career-advancing experience that is well-supervised, safe, stable, and enriching for the student for 8-10 weeks in the summer. This would be provided in the internship agreement form.
- Internships should primarily be with employers who are unable to provide fully paid internships, such as non-profit organizations, government entities, small businesses or start-ups.
- Internships should be off-campus. The location can be anywhere in the world, however international travel is not allowed to countries on the U.S. State Department Travel Advisory Level of 3 or 4. Any students traveling internationally or out of state must register in advance for UC travel insurance.
- Student responsibilities
- Confirmation of a potential internship must be obtained before applying for the scholarship. Students must have arranged a potential internship, and have the internship supervisor submit an internship agreement form indicating their support for having the student as an intern, if the scholarship is awarded.
- Priority will be given to students who have established relationships with mentors on campus including UCSC Career Coaches, Educational Opportunity Program (EOP) Advisors, department internship coordinators, and/or faculty mentors.
- The application will require students to articulate how the proposed internship experience will enhance their career and professional growth. Students will also need to upload a resume and a summer budget.
- If awarded, students must participate in a pre-internship workshop to help prepare them for their experience, such as building basic skills for workplace success, and in a post-internship meeting presenting their reflections on the internship experience.
- Students are expected to provide a short report on their experience at the end of the internship. Guidelines will be provided for this report.
Summer internship scholarship awards will be up to $7,500 maximum, depending on financial need. We expect typical awards to be between $4,500 and $6,500, with awards up to $7,500 for internships in particularly expensive cities or that require air travel to get to. A summer budget and requested scholarship amount should be uploaded with the application – use this budget template.
We anticipate being able to award 10-12 scholarships in 2023. Student applications will be reviewed by a committee of UCSC staff and faculty.
Scholarship awards will be processed by the Institute for Social Transformation and disbursed as a direct payment to the student in summer.
Timeline for 2023
Applications open: February 1, 2023
Zoom Info-Session 1: Wednesday, February 15, 2023 at noon (Register Here)
Zoom Info-Session 2: Friday, March 17, 2023 at noon (Register Here)
Student application deadline: May 1, 2023 (11:59PM)
Organization internship agreement form due May 8, 2023
Award notifications: mid-May 2023
Summer internships: June/July through August/September (8-10 weeks)
Selected students will be required to attend a pre-internship workshop in early June 2023
Selected students will be required to attend a post-internship workshop in late September 2023
Please contact the Institute for Social Transformation with any questions at firstname.lastname@example.org.