Wellesley Grants Program

Kalei Oliver ’20
Kalei Oliver ’20, working on an archeological excavation with Proyecto de Investigación Arqueológico Regional Ancash in Hualcáyan, Peru through a grant from Wellesley Career Education.

Wellesley Grants Program

The Wellesley Grants Program allows students to apply for funding to pursue unpaid internship opportunities which students find on their own. The program is funded by approximately three dozen donor endowed funds or gifts targeted to support Wellesley students across all career sectors, geographic locations, and class years.

Application Opens: February 1, 2023
Application Deadline: March 1, 2023 at 5:30 pm EST
Career Education Award Decisions: April 1, 2023



Quick links to learn more about the Wellesley Grants Program and how to apply: 

Grant Eligibility—Who Is Eligible? What Types of Experiences Are Funded?

Grants Program Stipends

Explore Grant Opportunities

Grants Program Application Process

Grants Program Selection Process

Grants Program FAQs


Mailing List

For email reminders and application tips throughout the College's Fall/Spring internship application cycles, please sign up for our Internships Mailing List


Reviewed program details (including the application process instructions), and ready to apply?

Apply in Workday using these instructions (application opens Feb 1 and will not be visible in the system until that time)



Jericko Torres-Leschnik ’20
Jericko Torres-Leschnik ’20, Intern with Museo Nacional de Antropología, Mexico City, Mexico (2019 internship grant program)

Grants Eligibility

Who Is Eligible?
Students enrolled at the College in Spring 2023 or in a study abroad program (one semester or full-year) are welcome to apply to the Wellesley Career Education Grants Program. Students on leave for the spring semester are ineligible

The majority of funding available is designated for Sophomores and Juniors. Limited funding is available for First Years and non-graduating Seniors (students who will graduate in December 2023). See the "Explore Grant Opportunities" section for more information. 

Details to Keep in Mind When Applying
Grant funding opportunities vary by industry and class year, so please keep these things in mind when applying:



  • Most funding is designated specifically for sophomores and juniors 
  • While open to all class years, funding is VERY limited for first years and non-graduating seniors 
  • While funding is available to support internships across Career Communities, the majority of funding is geared for the education/non-profit, community service, and social service sectors with multiple grants in environment and sustainability, government, and international experiences.
  • For more information about the Grants that support this program, please visit the Explore Grant Opportunities section of this page. 

What Type of Experiences Are Eligible for Grant Awards?
Grants Program funding can support various unpaid summer experiences, including internships, research, and community service. To receive grant funding and/or non-academic credit from Career Education, an internship must meet these minimum requirements: 

    • Run for at least 8 weeks (at least 300 hours). Internships must start after the last day of Spring Term finals and end before the first day of Fall classes. 
    • Align with a student’s career goals and prior academic experience so the student can develop skills transferable to future career opportunities. 
    • Allow for direct contact with a qualified professional supervisor to answer questions and provide consistent and timely performance feedback.
    • Present a reasonable job description and expectations​​ that are substantive and meaningful to the student and company yet manageable in the duration of the internship.
    • Provide a professional environment along with the necessary resources to complete assigned duties (e.g., access to appropriate technology, equipment, licensed staff, training).
    • Allow open communication between organization supervisors, Wellesley College staff, and the student, especially in the event of problems or emergencies.
    • Comply with international, employment and government laws, including all applicable regulatory bodies, and have valid and up-to-date licensure, accreditation and any necessary certifications.

    Click here for a downloadable PDF checklist of this Internship Eligibility. 

    What Opportunities Are Not Funded?
    Below are some opportunities not eligible for grant funding. This is not an exhaustive list.

    • On-campus opportunities including faculty research or thesis work
    • Independent Study
    • Academic tuition for classes or any related expenses (e.g., class materials, transportation to classes)
    • Fee-based opportunities (e.g., pay to participate in mission work, research, internships, or other programs) or other experiences that include program fees
    • Seed funding for Start-Ups or Non-Profits
    • Work on political campaigns (Note: Students may intern for a government official such as a Congressman, DA, or Senator, but they are not permitted to work on campaigns)
    • Paid or funded opportunities
    • Opportunities with organizations that are owned or operated by a student’s immediate family, or by an aunt or uncle
    • Internships through student-run organizations 


    Alicia Olivo ’19
    Alicia Olivo ’19, CASA 0101 Theatre Internship, Los Angeles, CA (2018 grants program)

    Grants Program Stipends

    Students funded through the Grants Program receive a $4,000 stipend from the Career Education office for remote, hybrid, or in-person internships.

    NOTE FOR SUMMER 2023: Wellesley College continues to monitor the developments in the pandemic closely and will make any changes to the policy of funding in-person opportunities as needed. 

    Stipends are intended to assist students with living expenses, including housing, utilities, and transportation (if applicable), food, medication, and other essentials. Stipends cannot cover the opportunity cost associated with pursuing an internship. They are not intended to serve as an hourly wage, which means that students may have less money for the summer than they would have if they had pursued a regular job or paid opportunity. 

    Students funded through the Grants Program are required to complete their internship, which must be a minimum of 8 weeks/300 hours. Students must also complete an Internship Pathway with tasks to complete throughout the summer. If a student does not complete their internship or Internship Pathway in full, they may be reported to the Honor Code Committee and forfeit their final stipend ($250) and non-academic internship credit.

    Students in internships funded by the Career Education Grants Program are not permitted to accept any other full-time or part-time positions or enroll in any summer courses (virtual or otherwise) that would coincide with internship dates. (Some exceptions may appy; Students should discuss specifics with the Internships Team at internships@wellesley.edu.) 

    Funded students are pre-approved to receive non-academic summer internship credit. Students decide whether they want this credit to appear on their transcript as an internship or research experience (INT 101 or RES 101). To earn internship credit, students must complete all Summer Internship Pathway assignments by the first day of Fall classes. Students that do not complete the Pathway by the deadline forfeit the credit.


    Emily Chun ’17
    Emily Chun ’17, 2016 Internship Grant, Community Space Litmus, Korea

    Explore Grant Opportunities

    The Wellesley Grants Program is funded by approximately three dozen donor endowed funds or gifts targeted to support Wellesley students working in unpaid internships. Through this generous and ongoing support, the Grants Program supports students across all career sectors, geographic locations, and class years.

    Summer 2023 Grants
    Here is a list of the grants available for Summer 2023. This list is only intended to help you understand the types of experiences that are fundable as well as some of the specific requirements (industry, type of organization, class year restrictions, etc.). Students simply apply to the general Grants Program and the Career Education staff will determine the appropriate fund. 

    Although there are funds for all students and career sectors, please keep in mind that opportunities are more limited for first years and non-graduating seniors:

    • First years are only eligible for these grants: 
      • Class of 1969 Community Service Internship Fund
      • Helen Wallace Health Sciences Internship Fund
      • Joan Freed Kahn '51 Service Program Service Opportunity Stipend
      • Lucas Public Service Internship Fund
      • Margaret C. Gordon Law and Education Public Service Award
      • Shirley Heidenberg Koteen '40 Endowed Internship Fund for Jewish Studies
      • Wei Fong Chu Chao Endowed Fund for International Internships
    • Non-graduating seniors are only eligible for these grants: 
      • Barbara Bush Award for Volunteerism
      • Oprah Winfrey Award for Volunteerism
      • Paul B. Beal and Mona Phillips Beal Internship Fund

    student in library

    Grants Program Application Process

    Applying to the Grants Program is simple and easy, but it does require students to reflect deeply on their desired summer experience and goals, research internship opportunities, and prepare materials ahead of time.

    Our Grants Program Application Guide outlines the application process and provides resources for each step along the way—so students can put together the strongest application possible. Some resources can be found here on our Career Education Resource pages

    Things to note:

    • Students do not need to have an internship confirmed in order to apply for the Grants Program, but they do need a clear vision of their proposed summer experience so they can describe, in a compelling manner, how this experience will benefit them professionally, personally, and academically. 
    • Students only need to submit one application to be considered for all our grants as we will assign the award that fits best based on their application materials. Students who think they are a particularly strong candidate for a specific award may note that in their materials.
    • Career Education can support your internship search! Check Handshake for opportunities or to schedule a Preliminary Appliation Review.

    Apply to the Grants Program through Workday (opens February 1; instructions here). For the application, students are required to submit PDFs of the following:

    • Resume 
    • Statement of Intent 
    • Names of organizations to which they have applied or will apply.  (*Please note: This question will be answered directly in the application so it does not need to be in PDF form. Also, students are not obligated to apply to or intern at any of the organizations they list. This information simply helps us understand their interests and determine which fund(s) we can use to sponsor opportunities.)

    For the Statement of Intent, students must answer the prompts below in no more than one page (in total for both questions) in a single PDF. Margins should be at least 1” and it should be single-spaced with a minimum 11-point font in Arial, Calibri, or Times New Roman:

    1. Career Exploration/Motivation: What type of internship will you be pursuing and why? How will this opportunity align with your interests and career goals to help you grow? How do you envision contributing to your proposed opportunity? TIPS: This means we want you to clearly explain the type of opportunity you are pursuing and your motivations for pursuing it. Give us specific details that directly connect your interests and future career goals to this possible opportunity and explain what you can contribute and hope to learn in the process. 

    2. Academic Preparation: What have you learned already that you can build on and apply to this opportunity? While your answer should focus on academic preparation, you are welcome to mention other relevant extracurricular or volunteer experiences. TIPS: We will be looking for you to discuss specific academic pursuits (and any other applicable experiences) that have prepared you for this possible opportunity (e.g. courses, research, class projects). Do not solely list classes but provide us with clear details about the knowledge/skills/experiences you’ve gained that have prepared you for this possible opportunity.

    Students cannot save their application in Workday, so please plan to complete it in one sitting. We recommend you finalize all your PDF documents and name them as instructed (e.g., YourName_DocumentType: ZevSanchez_Resume; AmberLee_StatementofIntent) prior to starting the application in Workday.

    Applications cannot be edited after they are submitted. If the application deadline has not yet passed and you need to make changes, please contact internships@wellesley.edu.


    student with camel

    Grants Program Selection Process

    Selection for the Grants Program is competitive—less than 25% of applicants are typically awarded grants. Awards are granted based on the quality of a student’s application materials and the availability of funding to support the proposed experience. These are not need-based grants. We encourage students to seek support from Career Education programming and advisors as they work on their materials. 

    Selection will prioritize applicants who have not previously received summer funding from the College in order to make funding opportunities equitable and accessible to all Wellesley students. 

    Students will be notified by April 1, 2023 about award selections.

    What If I Am Selected for a Grant?
    Students awarded a grant have until May 1, 2023 to secure an internship and confirm their internship opportunity with Career Education. In order to do that, students will be instructed in their offer letter about how to submit the Pre-Internship Paperwork in the Pathway

    Once your materials are received, the Career Ed staff will confirm that the internship meets our eligibility requirements and start the stipend process. Note: Stipends will be paid in Workday via direct deposit only; payment by check has been discontinued. For direct deposit, students must have a US bank account, so please be sure you have one available.

    Career Ed will verify that you are set up for direct deposit in Workday and submit the payment to the account on file. If you do not have banking information entered in Workday, we will ask you to use these instructions from Student Financial Services in order to set up your account. The bank account information you enter in the app will transfer into Workday. 

    Workday Tip: You may view the bank account information in your Workday profile by clicking on the “Pay” icon and viewing your payment elections. If you need to change the bank account listed in Workday, please contact Dotti Koulalis in Accounts Payable (dkoulali@wellesley.edu). Students who submit bank information through the banking app will not have any information under pay elections.