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What does Puentes do?
Puentes builds bridges to connect undergraduate students and recent graduates with professional and cultural opportunities in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The core component of the Puentes experience is an engaging internship at a high-performing nonprofit or business in Buenos Aires, with meaningful work and close supervision. The internship is complemented by one-on-one mentoring sessions with Puentes staff to further develop professional skills and a cultural immersion program with weekly cultural events in Buenos Aires and additional, optional excursions to other regions of Argentina. We provide constant, reliable, and joyful 24-7 support on the ground in Buenos Aires, and we help you with all pre-departure details and arrangements, including identifying comfortable and pre-screened housing and setting up Spanish language classes. Find out more on the Program Overview page.
What is included in the Puentes program other than the internship?
Puentes offers a full immersion experience, which is built to maximize professional, personal, and cultural growth during your time in Buenos Aires, Argentina. From the optional Spanish classes that will jumpstart your language, to the internship and additional professional enrichment sessions, to the cultural events and excursions, to the comfortable and pre-screened housing, we meticulously plan and orchestrate the Puentes experience so that you can learn and enjoy and experience each moment in Argentina. You can learn more about the Puentes program components on the Program Overview page.
Does Puentes monitor the internship in an ongoing way?
Yes. During the internship, you have a weekly check in meeting with your supervisor in order to review recent and upcoming work. As well, the Puentes staff, your supervisor, and you have a mid-internship site visit to provide a space to communicate learnings, challenges, successes, and goals. Find out more about what makes our internship support unique on our Internships page.
Can I get academic credit for the internship?
In most cases Puentes can work with you to craft your Puentes experience so that you can receive university credit for your internship in Buenos Aires.
When can I go, and how long does the Puentes program last?
Puentes arranges internships on a rolling basis, within one to two months of receiving all of your application materials. Thus, we offer flexibility and customize the program so that you can start when it best works for you. Puentes recommends that you commit to at least a 7 to 8 week internship in order to allow time for adaptation, integration, impact, and reflection. However, both longer and shorter durations are possible, and we work with you to arrange the internship according to your preferences.
Does Puentes have full-time staff on the ground in Buenos Aires?
Yes, absolutely. We are on the ground in Buenos Aires and available by phone, Skype, and email in order to help you with all of the details and arrangements of your Puentes adventures, so that you can focus on making the most of your experience. Learn more about our comprehensive support system on the Puentes Support page.
How does Puentes prepare program participants for future professional and life experiences?
In addition to gaining new skills and professional experience through your internship, you also have four one-on-one mentoring sessions with Puentes staff to build additional professional skills, and you are given access to attend networking events and professional speakers in Buenos Aires. Find out more on the Professional Enrichment page about the professional growth Puentes offers.
How does Puentes compare to other international internship placement organizations?
Puentes offers a truly unique option for your internship abroad. We ensure that your internship maximizes learning and growth by carefully crafting it according to your interests and goals and by then monitoring it throughout via our mid-internship site visit and constant support. Unlike programs that only focus on internship placement, Puentes goes beyond and complements your in-office experience with one-on-one mentoring sessions to provide you with important career advancing skills. Another key difference is how we work; we have a deep understanding of the needs, interests, and energies of undergraduate students and young professionals, as well as the particularities, dynamics, and day-to-day workings of Buenos Aires. We are highly organized, detail oriented, on time, and ridiculously prepared. Learn more about how Puentes offers an unparalleled experience on the Why Puentes page.
What does the application process involve?
The first step to apply is to complete our simple Application Form and submit your resume. Upon receiving your application, we will contact you to coordinate a phone or Skype conversation to learn more about you so that we can refer you to the best internship site for you. We will also request that you share with us two letters of recommendation. We will then proceed with the internship matching process. For more information, go to the How to Apply page.
What are the eligibility and language requirements to apply?
We are excited to work with undergraduate students and recent graduates, who are at least 18 years old. The Puentes experience is ideal for young people who are eager to learn outside the classroom and who enjoy creative problem solving and tackling new experiences with an open mind and an optimistic enthusiasm. There are no language requirements to participate in Puentes because we are committed to crafting your internship experience personally for you. Find out more on the Criteria and Eligibility page.
Is there an age limit to participate?
We request that applicants be at least 18 years old at the time of application. The Puentes program has no maximum age limit. However, it is geared towards undergraduate students and recent graduates.
When should I apply?
The Puentes application process is based on rolling admissions without set deadlines, since we customize the internship experience for you. We recommend applying at least two months in advance of your preferred internship start date so that we can craft the best possible internship experience for you and help you prepare, but we can adjust to tighter timelines.
How will I be matched with my internship site?
Upon submitting your application materials and having an initial conversation with the Puentes staff, you will be referred to up to three internship sites and have phone or Skype interviews with each site. We will collect your preferences and the internship site preferences and extend offers where there is a match in preferences. Upon receiving an internship offer, you will have up to 10 days to accept or decline the position. Find out more on the Internships page.
PLANNING FOR YOUR TRAVELS
Will you help me to coordinate my flights and visa?
Yes, in advance of your departure for Buenos Aires, we will share with you a packet of information to help you prepare for your travels and life in Buenos Aires. The Puentes staff is also available to have personal, pre-departure phone calls with you and/or your parents in order to assist with any questions. We can recommend how to find great flights, and we will walk you through the visa process. Find out more about our pre-departure support on the Puentes Support page.
How can I find housing in Buenos Aires?
Through our on the ground knowledge, we are available to help you consider, identify, and secure the ideal housing option for you. All housing options are located in nice, residential neighborhoods and include bedding, towels, and internet access. You can choose to stay with a local homestay family, in a shared apartment with roommates, or in a student residence. Or you may arrange your own housing in Buenos Aires. Just let us know your preferences. We will accommodate accordingly. Learn more about our options on the Housing page.
Do I need travel insurance?
Yes, we would recommend that you have travel insurance during your time in Argentina. If you are already insured in your home country, you should check with your insurance carrier to see what kind of coverage, if any, you would have while abroad. Puentes does not directly supply travel insurance. This gives you the opportunity to determine the nature and scope of your coverage. We are happy to help with guidance if you desire.
Will you meet me at the airport and provide an orientation?
Yes, definitely. Upon your arrival to Buenos Aires, you will be welcomed at the airport by Puentes staff and transported to your Buenos Aires home. The Puentes staff will provide you with a welcome packet, and you will participate in a “Mate de Bienvenida” (Welcome Tea) to tell you all about Buenos Aires and the Puentes program. You will also go on a city tour to help get oriented in your new home city. Find out more about these welcome services on our Puentes Support page.
What is the program fee?
The program fee varies depending on the type of housing you choose and the duration of your stay in Buenos Aires. After submitting your Application Form and having the initial conversation with Puentes staff, a US$300 deposit is due. If you do not approve an internship placement within two weeks of receiving your first internship offer, you will be fully refunded your US$300 deposit. Find out more on the Program Fee page.
What is included in the program fee?
The Puentes program fee includes a customized internship in a high-performing business of nonprofit, with meaningful work and close supervision; a mid-internship site visit with you, the Puentes staff, and your internship supervisor; one-on-one mentoring with Puentes staff to develop career advancing skills; access to networking events and professional speakers, plus monthly “Puentes Presenta” talks; city tour to key sights and neighborhoods of Buenos Aires; private tango lesson with professional instructor; day trip to a typical ranch, with horseback riding, “asado” (barbecue), and folk music show; comfortable, pre-screened, and well-located housing in nice, residential neighborhoods; pre-departure information and support to prepare for your time in Buenos Aires; personal airport reception and transfer; welcome Orientation; Buenos Aires packet, with local cell phone, local information, and maps; on the ground support in Buenos Aires 24 hours a day, 7 days a week; alumni support, including letters of recommendation and professional networking. Find out more on the Program Fee page.
Is the internship paid?
Puentes internships are unpaid. The purpose of the internship is to provide participants with valuable professional experience and career advancing skills.
Does Puentes offer scholarships or other financial aid?
Beginning in 2015, we will offer one full scholarship and one partial scholarship based on merit. In the meantime, we are delighted to work with you to help you seek and secure funding for your Puentes experience. Many universities offer funding for internships and international learning, and we are very skilled and successful in navigating these processes. Let us know how we can help; we’re eager to do so.