Summer Experience Award (SEA)
The Summer Experience Award provides a stipend for either a domestic or international opportunity to Yale College first-years, sophomores, and juniors on Yale financial aid. International students pursuing U.S. opportunities must contact the Office of International Students & Scholars to discuss work authorization. View details below and the Frequently Asked Questions for information. Students are welcome to set up an appointment through Yale Career Link to speak with an advisor, discuss eligible opportunities and have their questions answered.
General Application Information
Application Deadline: Tuesday, May 2, 2023, at 1:00 pm ET
Priority Deadline: Monday, April 3, 2023
All students are welcome to submit their completed applications by the priority deadline. International students and students pursuing international internships are strongly encouraged to submit a complete application by the priority deadline of Monday, April 3 to ensure the processing of their payment prior to leaving campus. Incomplete or late applications are not accepted beyond the May 2 deadline.
The SEA is not competitive. Eligible students who have secured an eligible opportunity will receive $4,000 for a U.S.-based opportunity or $6,000 for an international experience (The SEA is reduced to $4,000 for a remote international experience).
Applications will be reviewed within 20 business days and students will be contacted if needed. If approved, applicants will receive an email from OCS with details on how funds are distributed. If not approved, an email will be sent with the reason. Eligible students can submit an alternative application before the deadline.
Students are also encouraged to apply for Yale Fellowships simultaneously. The Office of Career Strategy recommends that eligible students use Fellowship and SEA awards for 2 separate summers. In some instances, Fellowship and SEA awards can be combined for one summer’s experience.
Who is Eligible for the Summer Experience Award?
- Yale College first-years, sophomores, and juniors.
- First-time recipient of the SEA. Students that previously used the SEA or the Domestic Summer Award (DSA) are not eligible.
- Secured an eligible summer opportunity.
- Recipient of Yale financial aid during the spring term leading up to the SEA summer.
- Students returning from a Leave of Absence are eligible if they are returning in Fall 2023 or Spring 2024 and are able to show proof of financial aid eligibility. Email email@example.com for questions.
- Yale ROTC students and Eli Whitney students may be eligible and should email firstname.lastname@example.org to inquire.
- Students applying for an International Summer Experience Award must abide by Travel Policy for Yale College Students. The University will allow university-sponsored travel for fully vaccinated faculty, staff and students subject to obtaining approvals required under existing university policies and processes. Faculty, staff and students who are not fully vaccinated may not participate in university-sponsored travel.
What Opportunities are Eligible for the Summer Experience Award?
Unpaid or underfunded ($1,500 USD or less for the entire opportunity) with one of the following:
A US-Based Opportunity
501(c)(3) nonprofit, including nonprofit Universities; government entity, including public Universities; non-governmental organization (NGO); Arts Apprenticeship; or Science, Laboratory, or Other Research Opportunity.
An International Opportunity
Nonprofit organization, including nonprofit Universities; for-profit company; government entity, including public Universities; non-governmental organization (NGO); Arts Apprenticeship; or Science, Laboratory, or Other Research Opportunity.
Remote opportunities are eligible in both US-based and International opportunities, however remote-based international opportunities will have the award reduced from $6,000 to $4,000.
- Must be at least 30 hours/week, for at least 8 summer weeks, which do not have to be continuous if employer agrees. No additional funding through the SEA for more than 8 weeks.
- Must have an assigned supervisor for regular mentorship that has a permanent connection to the organization, and cannot be another student. For students pursuing research or work in a lab, the supervisor must be a faculty member or full-time research staff. Master’s, Ph.Ds and Postdocs cannot be listed as the supervisor.
- Supervisors/Mentors must complete and sign the Host Verification Form which is found in the SEA application on Yale Career Link. Make sure to leave enough time for your supervisor to sign and return the form before the application deadline. Applications with missing or incomplete HOV forms will be rejected.
Qualifying Opportunity Definitions:
- Certified 501(c)(3) Nonprofit, including a nonprofit University or NGO that can be confirmed on Guidestar.
- Local, state, federal, or tribal government, including public Universities. Note: political campaigns are not eligible.
- Arts Apprenticeship, a mentoring relationship with an artist/creator in visual arts, theater and performance arts, creative writing, architecture and design, music, film making, or media arts.
- Science, Laboratory, or Other Research, a mentoring relationship with a faculty member at a public or nonprofit University, including Yale, or other nonprofit or public entity.
- For-profit opportunities: Due to the U.S. Fair Labor Standards Act, only for-profit opportunities outside of the U.S. are eligible and must be unpaid/underfunded (less than $1500 USD).
Under federal tax law, a scholarship or fellowship provided to a student in a degree granting program is generally taxable. If you are a candidate for a degree, however, you can exclude from taxable income that part of the award used to pay the costs of tuition, required fees, books, equipment and supplies (required fees, books, equipment and supplies are limited to those specifically required of all students in a course). You cannot exclude from taxable income any part of the grant used for other purposes, such as room and board. Please refer to IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Higher Education, Section 1, Scholarship, Fellowships, Grants and Tuition Reductions and the IRS tax guide for students, Taxable Income for Students.
While OCS cannot offer tax advice, the IRS Tax Office on Court Street does offer free tax advice to students.