FAQ

General Questions

  • What is the difference between an internship program and a volunteer program?

    Internships tend to be more career-related, whereas volunteer projects are more community-service related. Typically, an internship position would have more requirements in terms of experience, education and skills than a volunteer position.

  • Are start dates and durations flexible?

    Yes, start dates are flexible and, depending on the project, durations typically range from one to six months. Since we customize all programs according to your schedule, both shorter and longer durations are possible.

  • How can I confirm Connect-123’s reputation?

    For personal accounts from our alumni, or reviews from our university partners, read our see our reviews.

    To date, we have worked with students from over 300 universities and have partnerships with a number of US-based universities, including Michigan State University, the University of Southern California, Ohio University and Bentley University. In addition, we are one of the University of Cape Town’s select local partners.

  • What is the average age of program participants?

    Our average age is 23, however, we work with undergraduates, graduates, and professionals of all ages. In the past, our range has been 18 to 72!

  • Can I earn academic credit?

    We are delighted to offer academic credit for our international internships and volunteer placements through a partnership with our school of record, the University of California Irvine.

    UC Irvine offers all Connect-123 participants an opportunity to earn 3 graded transfer credits by enrolling in an online course.

    To find out more about earning academic credit for Connect-123 programs, please click here.

  • How can I find Connect-123 participants and alumni?

    Check out reviews from our alumni testimonials on our website.

  • What benefits do you offer to Connect-123 alumni?

    We stay connected with our alumni through our members-only group on Linkedin, where our alumni can keep track of each other, find jobs, get connected with others who are likely to share common interests or career-paths, and in general network with an impressive group of movers and shakers worldwide!

  • How does Connect-123 compare to other placement organizations?

    We love what we do and are passionate about providing life-changing experiences for program participants and about creating value for local businesses, nonprofit organizations and communities. How we compare to others is ultimately for you to decide, but in our opinion, here are the questions we think you should be asking:

    1) Do you require reference letters? Reference letters are the key to impressing local organizations and getting offered “real” positions. If you were a supervisor at a local organization, wouldn’t you want to read references before making a decision about an international applicant? If you’re not being asked for reference letters, you might question the extent to which the local organization values the work that they are asking you to do. As part of our application process, we require two reference letters.

    2) Can we have a conversation before I apply? If the organization wants to speak with you prior to applying, it’s a good sign that they care about your motivations and goals related to the experience. If they instead require an application form and deposit prior to speaking with you, they might be more interested in “making a sale” than in ensuring that their program is the best fit for you. As a first step, we always recommend speaking with one of our Program Coordinators in the country where you want to go, learning more about what we can offer, and then deciding if we’re a good fit for each other. To schedule a call with a local Connect-123 Program Coordinator, please Contact Us.

    3) Is the deposit refundable? While many organizations require a non-refundable deposit, our policy is different: provided that you do not receive an offer in your first or second choice field, your deposit is fully refundable. We work closely with you to understand your goals, interests and requirements and are confident that you’ll be thrilled with the results!

    4) Do you have academic partnerships? Understandably, when selecting partners, universities put placement organizations through a detailed (sometimes grueling!) due diligence process. Make sure that any placement organization you contact has passed the test and has direct university ties. Since 2006, Connect-123 has worked with students from over 600 universities and has a number of formal university partnerships. We also have direct relationships with scores of career center advisors, study abroad directors and professors.

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