• The Social Impact Internship Grant helps NYU Shanghai students fund living expenses.
  • The grant applies to internships at nonprofits anywhere in the world.
  • Students can be considered for the grant up to two times.
The exterior of the new NYU Shanghai campus.

Students come to NYU, in part, for the unmatched professional opportunities available to them across our global network. But not all internships are alike—and that’s where the NYU Shanghai Social Impact Internship Grant comes in. Through the Center for Career Development, students can apply for funding to help with living expenses. The money lets students take advantage of service-oriented opportunities they might not be able to pursue otherwise.

A student meeting with a career adviser.

Formative Experiences

When recent graduate Angel Olvera, who majored in Social Science, was offered an internship at the Center for Peace Victoria, a Social Impact Internship Grant gave him the chance to learn foundational skills in political coalition building. The Texas-based nonprofit consists of ordinary citizens. Furthermore, the nonprofit gathers the local community for meaningful public conversations where participants can find common ground. In fact, among his projects Angel counts a well-attended, genuine conversation he organized about race and ethnicity as the most impactful. “The peace-building skills I learned and developed will be tremendously useful for building and maintaining the political coalitions necessary to achieve the radical transformations our society desperately needs,” he reflects.

For NYU Shanghai rising junior Kejing Chen, the Social Impact Internship Grant allowed him to use his skills to give back. In fact, the Data Science and Honors Mathematics double major worked with the nonprofit Stepping Stones. The organization dedicates its efforts to improving the welfare and education of disadvantaged children in China. What’s more, Kejing served as a teacher, an assistant to his supervisor, and a course designer at Stepping Stones. “I hope I can help underprivileged kids directly by teaching and also indirectly by producing more teaching materials like educational videos,” he explains. Kejing also discovered, as he puts it, “the importance of sharing kindness.” He adds, “I found that I liked the feeling of being needed and really enjoyed helping others.”

Two students of color gardening in a green space.
Students recently received scholarships for internships at:
  • Asia Society–Young Green Tech
  • Carnegie Endowment for International Peace (Carnegie China)
  • Council of American Enterprises Colombia
  • Education Without Barriers
  • International Youth Neuroscience Association
  • Pakistan Red Crescent Society
  • Permanent Mission of the Republic of Lithuania to the United Nations, New York City
  • Public Citizen
  • United Nations Environment Programme, Nairobi, Kenya
  • Water Stewardship Asia Pacific


Does my internship have to be at a nonprofit based in Shanghai?
No, it can be anywhere! Many students intern in Shanghai, but since the NYU Shanghai Center for Career Development launched the program six years ago, it has supported almost 70 students taking on internships around the world, in places like Ecuador, India, and the United Kingdom.

Do I have to be an NYU Shanghai student to be eligible?
Yes, Social Impact Internship Grants are only for NYU Shanghai students. However, if you are attending NYU in New York City or NYU Abu Dhabi, don’t worry. There are plenty of resources available for you at these campuses, too!

Can I receive funding more than once?
Yes, the Center for Career Development considers grants for up to two unpaid internships during a student’s time at NYU Shanghai.

More Ways to Get Funding for Unpaid Internships

The Social Impact Changemaker Fellowship awards 25 NYU undergraduate students $5,000 each for unpaid summer internships that address public service, social impact, and economic or racial inequality.

The Bañuelos Family Changemaker Fellowship awards approximately 10 undergraduate or graduate students grants of up to $10,000 to intern with nongovernmental organizations or conduct research in African nations.

With the Wasserman Center Internship Grant, students who pursue unpaid internships in qualifying industries that do not generally pay their interns are awarded $1,200 during the fall and spring semesters or $2,000 for the summer.

Offered during the fall and spring semesters, the Wasserman Center Global Internship Grant awards money to students studying away from New York City at another NYU global site.