Frequently Asked Questions


Who is eligible?

First-years, Sophomores and Juniors. Summer internships and other postgraduate opportunities for Seniors are also available. If you are interested in the Ruhr Fellowship, TUM PREP, and DESY, please consult individual program websites for additional requirements and/or restrictions.

Are there in-person internships, and can I go to Germany next summer?

Many factors will determine whether in-person internships are possible, including international travel restrictions, Princeton University’s Covid-19 policies, and planning at the respective host organizations.  Please consult the University’s Travel Toolkit site for the most up-to-date information regarding permissible travel. 

Are there remote internships?

We anticipate that most internships will be conducted remotely in the summer of 2021. If the situation changes, you will have the option to conduct your internship in person. 

Were there remote internships last summer?

Yes.  Due to international travel restrictions, Princeton University’s Covid-19 policies, and common sense, all internships were conducted remotely last summer.

Do I have to learn German?

Language proficiency requirements vary. Many STEM internships are conducted primarily in English. Internships in cultural fields require at least intermediate-level German proficiency. Native or near-native fluency may be required for internships in media and journalism. We will find the best fit for you.

Are there deadlines?

We accept applications throughout the year, and some companies prefer to wait until the spring to make summer plans.  However, some internships — such as the Ruhr Fellowship, Bundestag, and Ifo — have strict deadlines.   Keep in mind that the sooner you apply, the better your chances of getting your top choice.

How do I submit my cover letter, CV and other materials?

When you submit an Application Form, you will receive an invitation to a shared Google Folder if any supporting materials are required. Only you and the Summer Work Program staff will have access to this shared folder. CVs and cover letters must be submitted as Microsoft Word Documents. Ask your recommender to email the recommendation letter directly to the Assistant Director.

What do I include in my cover letter?

Tell us about what excites you!  You should also describe your professional and academic interests, career goals, and the types of internships you are interested in.

How do I write a German CV?

Start with a great English CV by visiting the Center for Career Development — and take a look at our German CV Guidelines.

Do I need a Language Evaluation?

A Language Evaluation is not required for native speakers, German majors, students enrolled in German 107 or any higher-level course conducted in German. In addition, some STEM internships do not require a language evaluation.

Where do I get a Language Evaluation?

You should ask your current or most recent German instructor at Princeton University. If you did not take German at Princeton, contact the SWP Assistant Director.

Who should I ask for a recommendation letter?

You can ask any instructor at Princeton University. This can be the same person who completes the language evaluation.

Do I get funding?

Yes. We provide funding for living expenses, and some internships are paid by host companies.

Can I apply to specific companies?

Yes. Visit our How to Apply page to apply for specific positions.  You can find descriptions of currently open positions under ‘Useful Links’ on the SWP homepage.  You can also apply to be matched with positions based on your skills and goals. We work with you closely to find the best fit; there are new opportunities every year.

How long are the internships?

Typically, 4-10 weeks. Remote internships allow for flexible scheduling and can be combined with other summer activities.

Do I need a work permit?

If you are not an EU Citizen, you may require a “Work Permit Waiver” – even if your internship is conducted remotely. We will help you through the process.

How do I learn more?

Just ask! Contact the Assistant Director via email or schedule a meeting on WASE.