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The questions answered here cover a wide range of topics, however if you have any queries not addressed below we encourage you to contact us.
The following countries are members of the EEA and citizens of these countries can not apply to the Intern in Britain programme: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, the Republic of Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK.
BUNAC cannot find you a placement in the UK. You must have this arranged before you apply to our program. Many students find placements through their university careers office, study abroad departments, family contacts or through previous US employers etc. However there are also organizations who can help find you a placement for a fee.
An internship may be unpaid on this program as long as it is a voluntary arrangement between the employer and intern. Your status would then be that of a "volunteer". However being a volunteer does not simply mean that you are willing to work for no pay. Specifically, you and your employer must agree that you have no contract or formal arrangements and that you are under no obligation to perform any specific work or carry out instructions. You are able to come and go to work as you please and will have no expectation of, and will not receive, any payment or tangible benefit (including accommodation) for the work you do. BUNAC will verify this with your employer before issuing the Certificate of Sponsorship.
BUNAC will consider the training plan and contact the employer to discuss the nature of the internship. We will look for good rotation around various departments/areas of an organization and strong objectives for each period. BUNAC are happy to consider a training plan before you apply to the Intern in Britain program.
National Minimum Wage (NMW) legislation is the equivalent of Federal Minimum Wage laws in the USA. It establishes the rules under which employees in the UK must be paid, and also covers situations where unpaid employment is permitted.
The current National Minimum Wage is £5.30p/h for those aged 18–20 and £6.70p/h for those aged 21 and over.
The internship must be a supernumerary, career-enhancing, limited duration opportunity. The level of remuneration, if any, must be agreed in advance between the intern and the employer. However, a UK employer is neither required to pay prevailing wage nor obligated to pay more than minimum wage for the particular position offered
The presence of an intern must not harm the resident labor market. Interns must not fill vacancies in the UK workforce and must do work that is additional to the employer's normal staffing requirements.
No. The visa which is issued to you only applies to the company and internship specified on your 'Employer Application and Agreement', and therefore your Certificate of Sponsorship. You can not undertake another internship at a different employer under any circumstances. If there is a problem at your internship you should contact BUNAC for assistance.
It is your responsibility to keep BUNAC informed at all times of your residential and work address, e-mail and contact phone number.
Interns cannot overstay their visas but they are typically granted 7 days before the start of their internship and 7 days at the end of the internship. The date by which you must leave the UK will be stated on your visa. If you wish, you may then leave the UK and re-apply to enter under a different status (e.g. as a tourist). Permission to enter and stay is granted at the discretion of the immigration official at port of entry.
The following cancellation conditions apply:
Applications are accepted by BUNAC year-round. However you must allow sufficient time (minimum of 10 weeks) for your application to be processed and to apply for a UK visa before you leave the US to start your internship. We recommend you apply as early as possible. However, you cannot apply for your visa more than three months before the start date of your internship.
The structure of a training plan is entirely at the discretion of the employer and will depend on the nature of the internship. However, as a guide it may be split into weeks/months/projects, detailing what the intern will be involved with, the objectives for that period and who will be supervising the intern during each period. BUNAC require a full understanding of what the intern will be involved with in order to ascertain that the internship is at the required level for sponsorship.
BUNAC needs to see explicitly in your summary of benefits that you are covered with a payout benefit of at least $500,000 as well as repatriation of remains. Without a document that states repatriation of remains coverage exactly BUNAC will be unable to accept the proof. You can purchase our policy that meets all requirements for this visa.
BUNAC requires an official transcript from each applicant. To submit this you must request one from your university and upload to your member portal.
BUNAC needs to see a document that shows: the letterhead of your bank, account holder's name, type of account, date the document was generated and the present available balance. All documents submitted must reflect an account that has funds available for immediate withdrawal; CD's or other investment accounts may not be accepted. All documents should be generated in the last 30 days. Participants may submit proof of support funds from an account that is not in their name as long as it is accompanied by a letter of support from that account holder. Letters of support may be uploaded to your BUNAC account.
You will need to show proof of $1,500 for a paid internship and $2,500 for an unpaid internship.
If English is not your first language you need to provide proof of English Language skill with an IELTS score of 6.0+.
You will need to book your test through the official IELTS website and select an appointment date. Appointments are twice weekly, and there are over 1000 centers worldwide to choose from with 60 within the United States. The test costs around £145 and the results will be available 13 days from the date of your test. If you are from an English speaking country you will not be required to provide this, for example America, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa. Our team will contact you for an IELTs if they determine that you need one
Priority processing reduces the time it takes to issue your CoS, so it will be treated above non-priority applications. If you are in the US this also includes a visa agent whereas if you are applying outside of the US this only includes priority with BUNAC and not the consulate. For the visa agent it does require the consulate priority processing fee of $192 paid to the consulate. The visa agent will ensure that you application gets processed within the fastest possible time as they not only check through your full application to ensure it is correct before it is submitted but they personally drop this off at the consulate. Our visa agent that we use is a trusted advisor and has close relations with the consulate to ensure your visa gets processed as a top priority. Normal priority processing with the consulate is to be paid directly to the consulate on the visa application and can take between 1 – 3 weeks however this is subject to delay. If you select the visa agents FedEx account for shipping the overnight shipping costs are $29.95 each way.
BUNAC will be required to conduct a compulsory site visits prior to approving your internship for any company if any of the below statements apply: