Applying for Houston Program Summer Internship Funding

Each year, the Houston Program awards full stipends to students who have accepted offers to complete unpaid summer internships and partial stipends to students completing low-paying summer internships. Read below for details regarding eligibility and the application process.  

The Charles Hamilton Houston Internship Program Funding Application is NOW OPEN. Read the application instructions below and access the application here.

Student Eligibility

Only students who have completed the following requirements are eligible for funding through the Houston Program:

Previous Houston Program members:  Students who were Houston Program Members (completed ALL enrollment steps) during the 2022-2023 academic year are eligible for funding and do NOT have to complete the above steps.

*Sophomores who participate in the Loeb Center’s Sophomore Summit (January 24, 25, & 26, 2024) will fulfill all requirements for Houston Program funding

Additionally, eligible students must be enrolled at Amherst the semester prior to the start of their summer internship and intend to be enrolled at the College the semester after. Students who are studying abroad may apply. Graduating seniors are ineligible. Students on leave during the spring 2024 semester are NOT eligible to apply to receive funding.

If you are completing a local off-campus or remote internship and wish to apply to live on-campus for the summer, complete the summer housing request form through Residential Life (due May 1st). Please note that if you choose on-campus housing, your student account will be billed for housing and meal costs (currently $200 per week) and you should factor that into the overall budget your stipend provides.

Application Process

Students may submit an application during one of the following application cycles:

Application OpensApplication Closes
First Funding Application CycleThursday, February 22, 2024Thursday, March 21, 2024
Second Funding Application CycleMonday, March 25, 2024Wednesday, April 24, 2024
Third Funding Application CycleMonday, April 29, 2024Wednesday, May 15, 2024

Only complete applications submitted by an application cycle deadline will be reviewed by the committee.  Award decisions can take approximately 3 weeks to be released.

Completed applications include:

  • Charles Hamilton Houston Internship Program Funding Application Form
  • Most-recent copy of the resume that meets the Loeb Center Resume Review Checklist
  • Sponsor confirmation form completed by a supervisor 

Applications that do not comply with the resume review checklist will receive low ratings during the application review process and may be at risk of being declined.  You are strongly encouraged to continue working with an advisor or PCA until your resume compiles with the checklist.

Internship Eligibility

In order to be considered for funding, an internship must:

  • Take place during the Amherst College summer break (after the last day of spring semester classes and before the first day of fall semester classes)
  • NOT take place on campus
  • Be at least 150 total hours and offer no less than 25 hours per week and no more than 40 hours per week
  • Be hosted by an organization or company that can be verified as legitimate by Houston Program staff.  This can mean one of the following:
    • Has a working website with a legal name that matches the name on the student’s application
    • Has a social media account (Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.) that has been updated within a month of the student’s application submission
    • Can be found in a database, such as the IRS Tax Exempt Organization Search Tool or a Secretary of State website
  • Have an individual identified as a supervisor who is available to answer the intern’s questions and provide regular performance feedback
  • Allow the intern to spend the majority of scheduled work hours completing assignments that are meaningful to the organization AND are appropriately challenging for the experience level of the intern

The program DOES NOT fund:

  • On campus internships or jobs
  • Student’s own entrepreneurial or personal projects
  • Startup incubator programs
  • Skill-development programs or academic coursework
  • Solely clinical shadowing experiences
  • Language programs
  • Fee-based, internship placement programs

Stipend Award Amounts

150 – 239 total work hours$3,875
240 – 300 total work hours$5,000

*Special note for students with “low-paying” internships

Students who are receiving a salary or other compensation from their internship host (this includes housing, transportation, and meals) may request partial stipends.  The total combination of the employer compensation plus the calculated partial stipend may not exceed the Houston Program maximum stipend award.

Application Instructions

  1. Accept an internship offer from an organization or company.  Have a conversation with your supervisor to discuss the details of your internship.
  2. Ensure you have completed the prerequisites to qualify for funding through the Charles Hamilton Houston Internship Program.  Your application will be declined if you have not completed these steps.  Students who were members of the Houston Program during the 2022-2023 school year or participated in the 2024 Sophomore Summit do not have to complete the prerequisites again. 
  3. Have the most recent version of your resume on hand and ensure it complies with the Loeb Center’s Resume Best Practices
  4. Review the application short essay questions found on this handout.  We encourage you to finalize your responses to each essay question on a separate document before working on the application.
  5. Complete the Charles Hamilton Houston Internship Program Funding Application.
    • This application is housed on the SurveyMonkey Apply platform.  If you have not used the platform before, you must create a new account first.
    • Complete and sign the acknowledgement form at the end of the application and then click “Submit”.
    • The application consists of 8 tasks (9 if you must complete the Minor Safety Certification).  After completing each task, click the green “Mark as Complete” button.  You cannot submit your application until you have done this step. 
    • Download the PDF copy of the sponsor confirmation form, send it to your supervisor to complete, and upload the completed form to the application.  There is a link to download the form within the application, or you can download it here.
  6. Upload a PDF version of your resume to the application where requested.
  7. Complete and sign the acknowledgement form at the end of the application and then click “Submit”.

How Are Funding Decisions Made

The funding award decision is a three-step process:

STEP ONE. Eligibility Review: All funding applications undergo a preliminary review to determine if both the applicant and the internship opportunity meet the basic eligibility requirements.  Applicants will be notified if their application is withdrawn due to being ineligible.

STEP TWO. Committee Review:  After each application deadline, every eligible application is reviewed by members of the funding review committee according to a review criteria.  The quality of an application (short essay responses and the resume) is a factor in the committee review, which means applicants should make sure their applications are well-written, well-developed, and error-free.  Additionally, committee members are evaluating applications for:

  • Enthusiasm for the summer internship opportunity
  • Knowledge of both the organization they will intern with and their internship responsibilities
  • Quality of the internship opportunity (i.e. is it well-developed, substantive, and appropriately challenging for a college student)
  • Demonstration of internship fitting into applicant’s stated career path
  • Strength of applicant’s summer learning goals and explanation for how their internship will help them achieve those goals
  • Sufficient planning for overcoming any foreseeable challenges
  • Evidence of conversation between applicant and supervisor about supervision and performance feedback plan

Committee members vote to nominate applicants to receive funding awards after their evaluations.  

STEP THREE. Fund Matching: The money used for the Loeb Center’s internship stipends comes from endowed funds established by donors who have outlined restrictions on what types of internships their funds can be used for.  Therefore, after committee members nominate applicants, their internships are matched to available endowed funds.  Because the total amount of funds available is limited, applicants are matched to funds in this order:

  • Financial aid recipients
  • International students
  • Juniors
  • Students completing internships for the first time
  • Students who have never received an internship stipend from the Loeb Center (this does not apply to Meiklejohn Fellows)

It is possible that an applicant who has been nominated by the funding review committee may ultimately not be awarded funding due to there not being an endowed fund to match their internship or funding running out.

What Happens After Funding Decisions Are Made?

All applicants will be notified of the status of their applications within 3-4 weeks after the deadline.  Students awarded funding must complete a series of pre-departure requirements, including attending a required workshop, before receiving a stipend check.

Post-Internship Requirements

Students are required to complete and submit a final report to the Loeb Center at the end of their internship.  Furthermore, they must participate in an activity where they share insights from their summer internship with other Amherst students (i.e. Summer Internship Mixer, blog post for website, etc.).