Study Away

It isn’t necessary to go abroad to learn about different cultures, discover potential opportunities, and explore unique environments. The Office for Experiential Learning's Study Away programs offer courses and internships at locations within the United States. These programs allow students to apply classroom knowledge in professional settings.

  • Detroit - InnovateGov

    Interested in being a part of Detroit's comeback story? Then the College of Social Science's InnovateGov Internship program is for you. Students work with local government agencies, nonprofits, and community organizations throughout Detroit to address some of the city's most critical challenges, while balancing weekly class sessions, all to strengthen you as a public servant and civic leader.

    Semester: Summer 2021 CANCELLED

    Application Deadline: February 28

    Courses: ISS 335, PLS 422, PLS 494, SSC 493

    Housing: Wayne State University

    Program Fee: $350*
    Program fee and participation include orientation, 10-week housing, bus/QLine pass, and professionalization / cultural activities. Students are responsible for paying tuition, meals, parking, transportation to Detroit, and personal spending money. Several need-based scholarships are available to help defray these costs.

    *Estimate based on the previous year

  • Flint

    Whether you are a student from the Flint area or someone from outside Michigan who wants to make a difference, MSU's Flint Internship Program is for you! Benefit from hands-on learning in fields of interest while contributing to the mission of a community organization and revitalization of the Flint area.

    Flint - Michigan

    Semester: Summer 2021 CANCELLED

    Application Deadline: February 15

    Courses: SSC 493 or SSC 490 (6 credit minimum) 

    Housing: University of Michigan -Flint: Riverfront

    Program Fee: None
    Program participation includes 10-week housing and orientation. Students are responsible to pay for tuition, most meals, transportation, and personal spending money.

  • Hawaii

    Michigan State University’s Study Program in Hawaii combines field and classroom experience in a culturally rich environment which provides students with an opportunity to expand their worldview without leaving the U.S. This Study Program is designed for all undergraduate students in all majors. 
    Honolulu - Hawaii

    Semester: Summer 2021 CANCELLED

    Courses: IAH, ISS or SSC (8 credits minimum)

    Housing: University of Hawaii at Manoa

    Application Deadline: March 15

    Program Fee: $2100*
    Program fee includes 3-week housing, two daily meals, and field experiences to engage with the community. Students are responsible for tuition, additional meals, travel to and from Hawaii, transportation within the program, and personal spending money.

    *Estimate based on the previous year

  • New Orleans

    The Michigan State University and Tulane University partnership is designed to provide social services to agencies in the community and meaningful experiences to students.

    Semester: Summer 2021 CANCELLED

    Courses: SSC 490, SSC 493 

    Housing: Tulane housing at Deming Pavilion

    Application Deadline: February 15

    Program Fee: $2,100*
    Program Fee covers 6-week housing and orientation activities. Students are responsible for tuition, meals, travel to and from New Orleans, travel within the program, and spending money. 

    *Estimate based on the previous year

  • San Francisco

    Our partnership with the Academic Internship Council (AIC) supports students to identify customized placements in industries including, human services, international business, law, and finance. In addition, students have an opportunity to gain professional experience in a West Coast environment. 
    San Francisco - CA

    Semester: Summer 2021 CANCELLED

    Housing: locations vary around the Bay Area

    Courses: SSC 493, SSC 490, MC 400/401, AL 493A (6 credits minimum) 

    Application Deadline: February 15

    Program Fee: $3500*
    Program fee includes 8-week housing, internship placement, and orientation services. Students are responsible for tuition, meals, travel to and from San Francisco, transportation within the program and spending money. 

    *Estimate based on the previous year

    Please Note: Social Science majors are able to participate and earn SSC credit in AIC's New York City. This program is administered by MSU's College of Arts & Letters. Please go to the CAL Study Away page for more information.

  • Washington, DC - Freshman Seminar

    The Freshman Seminar Study Away program in Washington, DC is perfect for newly admitted students eager to earn academic credit, engage with MSU professors, and learn more about the country's capital. Explore unique topics around the United States as you travel with faculty and connect with experts to experience first-hand learning. The seminar is held during the summer before fall classes, carries 3 academic credits towards graduation, and fulfills the Experiential Learning Requirement for College of Social Science students.

    Washington, DC

    2020 Theme: Politics of Poverty - students will explore how poverty is measured, discuss the demographics of domestic/international poverty, consider differences between urban and rural poverty, analyze the impact of poverty/scarcity and the effects it has rewiring our brains, which thus impacts our decision making, US policies that have been adopted or proposed to address national and international poverty, and related topics.

    Semester: Summer/Fall 2021 CANCELLED

    Housing: Virginia Suites Arlington

    Courses: SSC 290 (3 credits)

    Early Application Deadline: April 16th
    Application Deadline: May 31st

    Program Fee: $900*
    Program fee includes lodging for 10 days while in Washington, DC, orientation, breakfasts and some meals, books/academic resources, metro card, transportation to and from field trips and cultural activities. Students are responsible for tuition, transportation to and from Washington, DC, additional meals/snacks, and personal spending money. Tuition and program fee will be billed to your MSU student account as part of your fall semester.

  • Washington, DC

    Fall or Spring Study & Internship Programs

    Washington, DC is the hub of many successful young professionals. It’s an exciting city for networking and seeking potential employment opportunities. MSU’s Washington, DC Fall and Spring Semester Study Programs include an academic focus on history, politics and culture of our nation's capital. 
    DC - Washington

    Semester: Fall 2021 (CANCELLED) or Spring 2022 (OPEN)

    Eligibility: 2.0 minimum GPA and junior standing recommended

    Courses: an Integrated Course Curriculum with over 40 course options, including ISS 315

    Application Deadlines

    • Fall and Early Spring - March 15
    • Spring – Rolling until October 15

    Program Fee: $4900*
    Program fee includes housing and orientation. Students are responsible for tuition, most meals, travel, transportation to and from DC, transportation within the program, and spending money. 

    *Estimate based on the previous year


    Independent Summer Internships 

    During the summer, Washington, DC is a busy and competitive place for interns. If this is the only time students can fit in a DC internship experience, the Office of Experiential Learning can assist.  Although there is no formal Summer program in Washington, DC, the office can provide students with internship leads, professional advice and housing information. 

    Once a student secures an internship in DC and wishes to earn MSU Social Science Internship credit (SSC 493), there is an application process to earn those credits. 

Scholarship opportunities for Study Away Participants

  • New Orleans, Hawaii and San Francisco Program Scholarships

    Applicants must be currently enrolled at Michigan State University and planning to participate in an one of the following Summer Study Away Programs: New Orleans, Hawaii or San Francisco.

    Deadline for Summer semester applicants is April 1  


  • The Rachel P. Kahan Memorial Scholarship

    For MSU's Washington, D.C. Semester Study Programs 
    (Fall or Spring only)

    Applicants must be currently enrolled at Michigan State University and planning to participate in an internship in Washington, DC as part of MSU’s Semester Study Program during fall or spring semester. Those applicants who have demonstrated the Spartan tradition of community engagement and civic leadership are encouraged to apply. 

    Deadline for Spring semester applicants is November 1 

    Deadline for Fall semester applicants is April 1  


  • Gordon & Norma Guyer Public Policy Internship Award

    For Internships in Public Policy

    The Gordon and Norma Guyer Endowed Internship Program provides scholarships to support MSU students that participate in public policy related internships.

    Scholarships of at least $1,000 each will be awarded for Fall, Spring and Summer semesters and will be applicable towards a student's tuition.

    Deadline for Summer semester applicants is March 26


  • A. J. Harris II Field Experience Scholarship

    For Interdisciplinary Studies Majors

    Recognizes capable and deserving IDS students who are embarking upon for-credit field work experiences in the upcoming year. Please contact your IDS advisor for more information about this and other scholarships available to IDS majors.

    If you are planning on an internship experience in US19, FS19 or SS20, you are encouraged to apply for this scholarship. 

    Deadline for IDS student applicants is Friday, March 22, 2019. 


  • Dr. Charles A. and Marjorie A. Gliozzo Endowed Scholarship

    For Domestic and International Internships 

    The Dr. Charles A. and Marjorie A. Gliozzo Endowed Scholarship for Domestic and International Internships provides financial support for undergraduate MSU students to participate in approved accredited internship programs. Financial need is not a factor in awarding this scholarship. Scholarships for variable amounts ranging from $500 to $1500 will be awarded to recipients. 

    Deadline for students planning to intern abroad in the summer, fall and spring of the following year is March 1


If you are interested in applying to one of the  study away or internship programs sponsored by Michigan State University’s College of Social Science, please click on the link below and complete the application.

What You'll Need:

  • Essay describing your interest in selected program
  • Resume for internships (one-page)
  • Name and email of faculty for recommendation form



Is there a GPA requirement?
No, but 2.5 is recommended. If your GPA is lower than 2.5, be prepared to discuss your academic record during the program interview. Applicant may consider submitting a letter of explanation with the application.

What if I don’t know what semester I want to go?
Select the nearest deadline for now and we can determine the definite semester later. 

How long should the essay be?
One page, double-spaced (300 words or less). Please put your name on it.

What if my resume is more than one page?
It is recommended that you work with Career Services to get your resume prepared for submission to internships sites on one page.  Visit for information on Resume workshops and Career Advising appointments.

If you have any additional questions not addressed in this list, feel free to email your inquiry to

Upcoming Study & Internship Program Informational Meetings 


InnovateGov in Detroit - Study Away Internship Program 
Wednesday, February 5, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. in 309B Berkey Hall
Snacks will be provided
RSVP to Briana Arenas at 


Flint Study Away Internship Program 
Friday, February 7, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. in 214 Berkey Hall
Snacks will be provided
RSVP to Briana Arenas at 


Washington, DC - Study Away Internship Program 
Tuesday, February 18, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. in 210A Berkey Hall
Snacks will be provided
RSVP to Briana Arenas at 


Check back soon for more meetings!

Students who Study Away come back with amazing stories, incredible memories and enormous personal and professional growth. Check out some recaps of past students' experiences away.

Margie Aimery
Program: Hawaii Study Away - Summer 2019
Major: Interdisciplinary Studies

Program takeaway: I had class sessions Monday-Friday and participated in community service projects twice a week. We did various projects within the community along with other University of Hawaii students and faculty. The most significant thing I learned from my study away experience is wherever I go, I will continue to embrace what it means to learn, understand and respect others and their cultures.

Advice for Future Students: My advice to students interested in study away programs is to go for it! Participating in programs likes these can only broaden students’ understanding of different cultures and people. The experience is eye-opening and will certainly waken one’s spirit of how others live within their own culture and communities!


Arianna Pittenger
Program: Flint - Summer 2019
Major: Human Bio
Placement: Michigan State University College of Human Medicine Flint Area Medical Education

Program takeaway: Some of my daily responsibilities included: analyzing data, evaluating surveys and sorting through paperwork to make sure callbacks were received. I was given the same responsibilities as the other employees. My internship experience gave me an idea of what it is like working in a hospital, which reassured me that I am taking the right career path. The biggest highlight of my experience was my work environment. My coworkers were great, they made me excited to come into work every single day!

Advice for future students: Go in with no judgment. When a city has several different populations, it can be easy for people to go in with prejudgment. This can change the way you look at things or situations. Even if you’re not in a new city, you can still experience new opportunities. New experiences can take you out of your element and allow you to look at different perspectives.


Matthew Levitt
Program: New Orleans - Summer 2019
Major: Sociology
Placement: Forum for Equality

Program takeaway: My role was to conduct research on LBTQ youths who are experiencing homelessness. Then to compile my research into a comprehensive presentation for prospective foster parents. The biggest thing I learned was to apply the knowledge I have gathered at Michigan State University to real life projects. A highlight from my internship was having the opportunity to walk in the New Orleans Pride Parade, which was a very special experience for me.

Advice for future students: My advice to students interested in an internship similar to mine would be to have an open mind about what you're assigned to do. Taking a step out of your comfort zone can help you learn to love new things! My second piece of advice would be to take advantage of every opportunity presented to you. Study away programs can help you experience adulthood while applying your knowledge to real work.


Hassan Fayz

Program: Washington, D.C. - Spring 2018
Major: Human Biology
Placement: U.S. House of Representatives

Program takeaway: The most significant thing I learned about myself would have to be my ability to function under extremely stressful situations and fast-paced environments. Working in Congress requires the utmost attention to detail and your surroundings.

Advice for future students: Go for it! Working in Congress is a rare opportunity and sets you up with so many networks. Since this internship, I have moved to Colorado to work on Congressman Jared Polis's bid for Governor. This opportunity was found through the connections I made as a Congressional Intern.


For more information, contact:

Office for Experiential Learning
College of Social Science
Berkey Hall - 221
Phone: 517-432-4541