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Serving through rehabilitation engineering

Traveling from Philadelphia to Hong Kong and Guangzhou, China, Penn Engineering students and faculty are joining forces to provide much needed services in prosthetics and orthotics to those who need it most.

Our Bioengineering-based Global Biomedical Service program sends undergraduates to work with amputees and children with cerebral palsy in southern China. They provide interventions and solutions that improve their daily living activities.

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Global Learning

Experience in an international setting is something that Penn Engineering strongly encourages students to obtain. By spending time in another country, students learn to see things from another perspective and develop skills in a hands-on way. Two paths that can be taken to have experiences abroad through Penn are by participating in Service Learning projects, and by spending a semester or a year abroad. Read on to find out about these exciting opportunities.

Programs for Penn Engineering Undergraduates:

Service Learning Opportunities

Service Learning is a unique form of outreach, in which the individual performing the service engages not only in the act of service, but also applies knowledge gained in the classroom in a hands-on way. Two of our best-known International service-learning organizations are the Penn Engineers Without Borders (EWB) and the Global BioMedical Service Program (GBS). To read about international service-learning opportunities, click here.


Study Abroad Opportunities

Penn Engineering seeks to encourage students to take advantage of global opportunities that will prepare them for an increasingly globalized society.  Penn Engineering wants to inspire students to spend time in an international setting to expose them to varied perspectives and approaches to university education. 

Through academically well-matched programs designed with an engineering student in mind, students can interact with local peers through classes, living arrangements, and other campus activities and excursions.  Engaging in a global education will further develop skills that can prepare them for a career in the global workplace.  

Partaking in a study abroad experience will allow you to:

  • Spend time abroad in other countries through semester-long programs that are culturally enriching, intellectually stimulating, and personally engaging. 
  • Fulfill major curriculum requirements while exploring a different part of the world. 
  • Increase your independence and confidence as you immerse yourself in a new environment. 
  • Develop intercultural abilities, a valued skill in a globalized world. 
  • Step out of your comfort zone to get a better grasp of understanding your place in the world. 

Learn more about Penn Engineering Study Abroad

Summer Study Abroad Opportunities

Opportunities are available for Penn Engineering undergraduates to participate in summer programs abroad organized by Penn Engineering and in partnership with universities abroad. Several of these programs offer both the opportunity to study abroad and to participate in service learning projects. Summer opportunities include:


International Summer Research (iSURE)

International Summer Undergraduate Research in Engineering (iSure)
Opportunities for undergraduates are available during the summer to spend eight to 12 weeks on a research internship in one of Penn Engineering's partner institutions abroad. The following is a listing of currently available options, including directions for applying. General questions may be directed to Research and Academic Services, at ras@seas.upenn.edu.

Germany: Ruhr University Bochum
The Ruhr University Bochum (RUB) is offering opportunities for up to five (5) Penn Engineering undergraduates to spend a summer (8 to 12 weeks) at RUB as part of their REACH initiative. Lodging will be provided by RUB. Students must provide their own round-trip transportation as well as living costs. Proof of adequate insurance coverage is also required. Learn more, or see a list of openings.

Germany: UROP at RWTH Aachen University
The Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program (UROP) at RWTH Aachen University fosters research partnerships between qualified undergraduates from top US and Canadian universities. The program is specifically designed for students who wish to attain hands-on experience in fundamental research at one of the top universities of science and technology worldwide.

France: GIANT Innovation Campus
The Nano/Bio Interface Center will support all expenses related to travel and accommodations for a 10-week research exchange in Grenoble France this summer for graduate or undergraduate research. To apply, visit the NBIC Website.


Global Immersion Course in China

To complete the application for the 2018 Global Immersion Course - China Program click here

International Internships

Ruhr Fellows Program, Germany
The Ruhr Fellowship Program connects highly motivated undergraduate students in the United States with a unique experience to expand their portfolio and networks to one of the most dynamic and technologically advanced areas in Germany. As Germany's Cradle of Industry, the Ruhr Area has come to represent creativity and innovation with its internationally renowned companies, universities and research institutes. The program is seeking top students interested in a new hands-on experience next summer as one of 15 Ruhr Fellows. You will get to know the German higher educational system through a one-month intercultural and language summer school program as well as the German work environment in a challenging one-month internship with one of the leading German companies and roundtable discussions with executives representing a variety of German global players. You may download the presentation (PDF) from a previously held information session. Learn more.

The Penn International Internship Program, Multiple Locations
Penn's International Internship Program (IIP) offers Penn students the amazing opportunity to intern with an established non-governmental or non-profit organization for eight to twelve weeks in the summer. This is an exciting opportunity to work directly for an NGO or a local organization in a developing country. In the past, IIP has sent students to Bangladesh, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Senegal, Kenya, Rwanda, El Salvador, Ghana, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Tanzania, India and China. Learn more.

Career Services
Besides participating in study abroad programs, Penn Engineering students often take advantage of opportunities for international internships and research (see iSure above). A helpful place to start looking for international internships is Career Services.

Programs for Engineering PhD Students:

France: GIANT Innovation Campus
The Nano/Bio Interface Center will support all expenses related to travel and accommodations for a 10-week research exchange in Grenoble France this summer for graduate or undergraduate research. To apply, visit the NBIC Website.