Parent Q & A

Is this a legitimate internship?

This is absolutely a legitimate internship with the possibility of university credit (this will need be pursued by the student with their university). Our internships typically have a much higher degree of mentorship and associated work than the average internship.

What are examples of GBI business partnerships?

We have enjoyed long-term partnerships with Capital III and its companies—Rio Energy, Seat King and Electrex. There are numerous others.

What is the application process?

Please see the Student Fielding Process under Resources. Don’t hesitate to call the GBI office if you have questions.

Are GBI interns paid?

This is dependent upon the company hosting the internship. Many of our partners overseas are new startups that are struggling toward sustainability. Because of this, they might not be able to offer an hourly wage. Many will try to offset this by subsidizing housing or room and board.

If the work is overseas, is the GBI supervisor able to give a job reference?

References are easily provided when needed. The intern can communicate with the GBI office after completing an internship to request a reference.

How do I know I can trust a GBI business partner and the influence that partner will exert?

Experienced GBI staff members have vetted each business over hours of phone calls and emails and through in-person visits before any internship opportunity is approved. All businesses have also been referred by trusted references before this vetting even occurs. Expectations are communicated explicitly and GBI staff consistently evaluates feedback from interns about their experiences to ensure expectations are being met.

About the Logistics

Before interns leave:


All of our teams are hosted by workers who live overseas with their families. We will never knowingly send a team where there is an elevated risk.

Dates of Travel

All GBI trips vary in duration, generally from eight weeks to one year.


Orientation is mandatory for all interns. Orientation Week “O Week” is held at Camp Webster in Salina, Kansas in mid-May.

Passport Requirements

Interns are responsible for securing their own passport. We ask that all interns provide proof of passport or passport application before their trip application can be processed by the GBI office.


GBI recommends interns check with their family doctor and the CDC regarding recommended immunizations for each specific location. Click here to visit the CDC website. (

Cost and how to raise funds

Each internship varies in cost based upon the location, length and type of compensation the internship offers. These cost will include expenses such as: travel cost, food, lodging, visa, travel insurance, local transportation, etc.

There is a $1020 partnership fee that is required upon acceptance of any GBI internship. Click here to view details of what is included in the partnership fee.

GBI staff will assist students with information regarding how to effectively raise funds for a trip.

During training and on field:

Insurance (during training and while traveling)

Any medical needs during training must be filed on the intern’s personal insurance policy. GBI does not provide medical attention, but may require an intern to seek medical attention to continue training.

Insurance (for period of internship)

All interns are required to obtain comprehensive insurance through Gallagher Charitable International Insurance Services. The GBI office will provide information to each intern on how to procure this insurance policy.


At home:
The most efficient way to reach your intern (for overseas internships) in the case of an emergency at home is to call the GBI office (303.618.8268). GBI/FOCUS staff answer the phones 24 hours a day, seven days a week while interns are overseas. We will get in touch with the host for your intern and facilitate connecting with family members.

On the field:
In the event of an emergency overseas, family will be notified as soon as information is made available. GBI/FOCUS staff are constantly monitoring world situations – especially in the country your student is in.


All interns are trained to never be alone. The “Buddy System” is an absolute rule. An important part of GBI training is how to be aware of your surroundings, as well as what to do should an emergency arise. We take this part of our training very seriously, and insist that the interns do as well.

Communication Policy

GBI’s communication policies for overseas summer internship assignments are intentionally designed to ensure the success of all team members. Typically, interns will have time/access to place a 20-minute call to an immediate family member every other week. All team members will contribute to a weekly team update to be sent via email. US internships have more flexibility with regard to the communication policy. The communication policy for longer-term internships will be evaluated dependent upon location.

After the assignment:

How can loved ones help?

The GBI office will send a letter to parents about a week before interns arrive home from an overseas assignment. This includes tips for helping interns process their experiences, as well as how to handle reverse culture shock. Interns themselves will receive a series of followup emails, intentionally scheduled based on what GBI/FOCUS has learned over the past 20 years from observing the experiences of students returning home. GBI additionally gathers feedback from team members, team leaders and overseas partners regarding their experiences to fine-tune our training.