What is SIGP?

Overview

The Summer Internship Grant Program was established to support Northwestern students participating in unpaid internships. A primary focus is as a funding source for undergraduate Northwestern students who have accepted (or planning on securing) an unpaid internship or summer experience in an industry that traditionally does not pay their interns. However, it is also a career development program to enrich important learning opportunities as students engage in the summer experiences.

Since 2007, the Summer Internship Grant Program has made it possible for undergraduate students to pursue unpaid internships. In 2016, over 350 Northwestern students received grants of at least $3000 to participate in unpaid summer experiences – the highest number awarded in SIGP’s history.

SIGP awards will be $3000 with the exception of Buffett International SIGP awards that are $6000 each. If not selected for Buffett International SIGP award, students are considered for the $3000 award.

Career Development Program

In addition to receiving a grant for living and travel expenses accrued during the summer of an unpaid experience, students are required to participate in career development activities that include: LinkedIn professionalism and SIGP virtual community participation, informational interviews, networking, midway review, and donor appreciation.  

Contact Information

Questions? Please contact sigp@northwestern.edu

(Back to Main SIGP Page)

Who is eligible for SIGP?

Current NU full-time degree-seeking undergraduate students who will be:

  • Enrolled for at least fall quarter of the 2017-18 academic year 
  • Pursuing a summer experience in a traditionally unpaid field or role
  • Receiving 0.25 or less credit
  • Not receiving any money from the employer or other grants/awards from Northwestern
  • Pursuing an internship that meets the required 250 hours of work between June-September and has a designated supervisor
I missed an information session. Can I view the presentation online?

Yes. You can view the virtual information session online.

I applied to SIGP last year. Can I reapply?

Yes. Previous SIGP recipients may apply again for this year's grant, so long as they meet the qualifications.

When will I find out if I've been awarded a SIGP grant?

Students will be notified if they are selected by Monday, May 8.

Do I need to have a summer internship/experience secured before I apply?

No. At the time of application, students are not required to have a summer internship/experience secured. If selected for an award, recipients who do not have an internship at the time of selection must meet with their NCA career adviser to develop a search strategy. Awardees without a secured internship by May 30 will forfeit their grant.

Can I apply to SIGP with more than one opportunity?

Yes. As long as you are able to meet the 250 hours of required work. Students can work more than opportunity if they are able to manage more than one role over the course of the summer.

Can I apply to SIGP if I am staying with family/friends during my summer experience?

Yes. Students are still eligible for SIGP even if they will be staying with family or friends during the summer. Students should be sure to note what other financial needs SIGP would be able to assist them with in the summer budget portion of the application.

Is there someone I can talk to about my application materials before submitting?

Yes. For quick review of application material, stop by SIGP Walk-In Hours happening Friday, March 31 & Monday, April 3 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. in Norris, Arch Room. It is strongly recommended that students use these walk-in hours to receive feedback and guidance on their applications. No appointment is required; simply stop by.

Students can also schedule an appointment to review SIGP application material.  Schedule a meeting with your career counselor or adviser via CareerCat.  Please bring drafts of your materials to your appointment.

What does a SIGP application entail?

As part of the SIGP application, you'll submit answers to three essay questions, as well as an updated one-page professional resume and a summer budget. Responses to essay questions must be answered in a PDF document, using a 12-point font, double-spaced with each essay numbered. The length of all three essays cannot exceed three pages. Find the essay questions and steps for how to apply on the SIGP website.

How can I strengthen my SIGP application?

A few ways to enhance your application include drawing connections between your experiences (academic coursework, leadership, and volunteerism) and your career field of interest, telling a cohesive story, and demonstrating consideration for your personal learning outcomes for your intended summer experience and how that applies to your career development. Find more tips on the SIGP website.

What career development program will students participate in as part of SIGP?

In addition to receiving a grant for living and travel expenses accrued during the summer of an unpaid experience, students are required to participate in career development activities that include: LinkedIn professionalism and SIGP virtual community participation, informational interviews, networking, midway review, and donor appreciation.