Fall 2020 Update 

Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on organizations, the Center for Career Education (CCE) continues to monitor the situation and work with employers to understand their hiring needs. We will include additional information as it becomes available about Spring 2021 CCE Internship Programs.  For further  information regarding recent CCE events and information, visit the COVID Updates and Weekly Roundup.

The Virtual Internship Program (VIP) provides you with an innovative internship experience based in cities across the globe in a variety of career fields.

Through VIP, you will develop an enhanced professional skill set, interact with co-workers, clients and supervisors remotely and contribute to projects while working in the comfort of your own space. In the past, students in VIP have held internships in the following industries or job functions:

  • Public Relations/Marketing

  • Consulting

  • Start-Ups

  • Public Health

  • Not-for-Profit/NGO

  • Arts Administration

  • Legal Advocacy

  • and more!

Program Features 

VIP is a combination of a virtual internship experience, peer connections with other VIP interns, professional career development programming, and support from a career counselor.

Program features include:

  • Pre-program training that includes a program overview, professional skills workshops, and discussion with former VIP participants.

  • Twelve-week internship for 10-20 hours per week during the spring semester.

  • Mid-semester dinner with other interns to discuss and debrief on internship experiences.

  • One-on-one career counseling appointments throughout the twelve weeks to support and enhance the internship experience.

  • End-of-program reflection session where you meet to unpack and reflect on internship experience and learn from your peers.

  • $600 stipend to assist with living expenses associated with the internship (commonly used for transportation and lunch). For more information on stipend payments, please review this information from Student Financial Services.

Program Benefits 

You will:

  • Develop time-management, organization, and communication skills

  • Foster an understanding of virtual work trends across industries

  • Establish professional skills and industry knowledge related to your individual internship

  • Gain familiarity with a virtual work structure, including tools and techniques to manage responsibilities and share information



  • You must be a full-time currently enrolled student in both the fall and spring semesters in Columbia College, The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science, School of General Studies, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences or School of the Arts.

  • You must be able to commit 10-20 hours per week for the entire 12 week internship.

  • You are only eligible to be part of the VIP program one time during your time at Columbia University.

  • International students need to apply for Pre-Completion OPT (Optional Practical Training) or F-1 CPT (Curricular Practical Training) as these are off-campus internship experiences.  Visit the Columbia International Students & Scholars Office employment section to learn more.

*By submitting an application, you authorize the Center for Career Education to conduct academic and disciplinary checks to confirm program eligibility. Certain University policy violations may disqualify you from consideration for the program.

Application Process & Timeline

Application Process

VIP internships will be posted in LionSHARE on a rolling basis as they become available.  Under the jobs tab using the label function, search “VIP-Virtual Internship Program” to locate all program opportunities. You may apply to up to three (3) positions of interest.

The following documents must be submitted through LionSHARE for each position of interest:

  1. Resume

  2. Cover Letter (if required by employer)

  3. Transcript (can be unofficial): This is your current semester course schedule which you should access by logging onto Student Services Online, clicking on “My Schedule” and copying and pasting your course schedule into a Microsoft Word Document. The schedule should show your full name, your school, your Fall 2018 Courses, and your enrollment status.

Program Milestones

  • Students Submit applications via LionSHARE
  • Employers will select candidates to interview either in person, phone or video
  • Offers are made to candidates
  • CCE hosts Internship Pre-Program Training for all interns
  • Spring Internship Experience
  • CCE hosts Reflection Session for all interns 


Am I eligible to apply if I am studying abroad?

  • Yes, if you are studying abroad during the fall semester, we encourage you to apply. You are also eligible if you are studying abroad during the spring semester but there are factors you need to consider. Make the employers aware that you will be abroad during the time of the internship. This is important as the time difference could impact your work schedule. You will also need to inquire about your work authorization with the visa you are on for study abroad. Please reach out to the VIP program manager should you have questions. 


Can I apply for more than one internship?

  • Yes, you may apply for up to three internships offered through the VIP. Submit all applications through LionSHARE.