Polish-American Internship Initiative

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1 Polish-American Internship Initiative The Program enables outstanding Polish students to take part in summer internships at leading corporations in the United States.

2 The Polish-American Internship Initiative The Initiative was launched in 2010 by the Polish- American Freedom Foundation (PAFF) in cooperation with the U.S. Embassy in Poland. The operational activities within the Program are carried out by the Educational Enterprise Foundation together with American companies offering internships. The initiative is primarily based on PAFF Programs such as Bridge Scholarships. This unique and prestigious initiative was reflected in an official Joint Statement of the U.S. and Polish Presidents following their meeting in the White House, December 2010: President Obama and President Komorowski applauded the partnership between the Polish American Freedom Foundation and leading U.S. companies to bring Polish university students and young professionals to the United States for internships in the private sector. [The White House, Office of the Press Secretary, December 08, 2010] The Polish-American Internship Initiative offers an exceptional opportunity for talented Polish students to develop their professional skills through learning from the best. The undertaking is implemented with strong support from the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw. United States Ambassador to Poland, His Excellency Lee A. Feinstein said: The Embassy is extremely proud to support this initiative, which offers a unique opportunity for talented Polish students to develop their professional skills by learning from industry leaders. I am thrilled that again this year, exceptional Polish students will work with an outstanding group of American companies, and look forward to the program s continued growth. The Program presents an opportunity to apply for a paid 2-3 month-long internship at American companies, a travel expenses subsidy and assistance in obtaining a visa. The internship is available for full-time students of the second year and above at Polish universities, with fluent command of English, achieving the highest academic results and who have already shown outstanding abilities and commitment. The participants of PAFF Programs such as scholarship holders of the Bridge Scholarships Program (to date a total of 14,500 scholarships have already been awarded) and participants of the Student Volunteers Program (over 7,500 university students involved) are particularly encouraged to apply for the internship. The Bridge Scholarships Program addresses the disparity of access to higher education for talented students living in rural areas of Poland whereas within the Student Volunteers Program groups of university student volunteers implement - at schools in villages and small towns - educational projects they have prepared to help develop the knowledge, skills and interests of the local children. Jerzy Koźmiński, President and CEO of the Polish- American Freedom Foundation said: The Polish- American Internship Initiative really is a once in a lifetime opportunity for those young people not only to learn from the best and enhance their competencies but also to get to know America the American culture, heritage and everyday life which, I am sure, will foster increased cooperation between our countries. On June 21st, just before their departure for the U.S., the interns met with Ambassador Lee Feinstein and PAFF President & CEO Jerzy Koźmiński. The meeting was held in the U.S. Ambassador s residence.

3 Program Results The preliminary stage of the Program included the International Internship Initiative, launched in PAFF together with the Educational Enterprise Foundation and in cooperation with the American Chamber of Commerce in Warsaw provided three Polish students with internships at American companies. Polish interns were hosted by: AIG Lincoln Polska and the Lincoln Property Company in Dallas, Texas, Mayday Manufacturing in Denton, Texas and CEVA Logistics. Thanks to that pilot undertaking the Polish-American Freedom Foundation has developed a set of enrolment procedures and acquired know-how on the logistics of foreign internships (including visa application procedures and transportation) that helped prepare and launch the full Polish-American Internship Initiative. The hosting U.S. companies invite one or more interns for a period of one to three months (June, July, August). The Polish participants have just finished their second, third or fourth year of university studies. PAFF and its Polish educational partners recruit and pre-select intern candidates. The final choice rests with the hosting company. PAFF covers the costs of the program s administration, travel to the hosting company s U.S. location (if the company does not cover it), insurance, visa fees, and assists in the visa application process. The U.S. hosting company provides a stipend adequate to cover at least the cost of accommodation and board during the internship. The participating U.S. companies are committed to providing a worthwhile educational experience for Polish students. They also provide the interns with mentors for professional development during the internship. The participating U.S. companies are contributing to the success of an important U.S. Polish initiative. By sharing knowledge and experience they teach students to benefit from living in a global, multicultural, modern world, thus creating a friendly, motivating and inspirational environment. Summer companies: GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, Westinghouse Electric Company, Pittsburgh Glass Works and Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation. 22 interns Summer companies: GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy, Westinghouse Electric Company, Pittsburgh Glass Works, Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation, Chevron North America and Raytheon BBN Technologies. 22 interns The interns at the Polish Embassy in Washington, D. C. with Ambassador Robert Kupiecki.

4 We kindly invite companies interested in participating in the Polish-American Internship Initiative to visit our website: The website provides information on application procedures, including the submission form and the timetable. Find us on Facebook In 2011 fourteen Polish students interned with Hitachi. The interns visiting the John F. Kennedy Space Center, Merritt Island, Florida.

5 About us The Polish-American Freedom Foundation (PAFF) was established in the U.S. by the Polish-American Enterprise Fund. In 2000 the Foundation opened its Representative Office in Poland and began carrying out its mission. The Foundation pursues its goals through programs implemented in the following areas: initiatives in education; development of local communities; sharing the Polish experiences in transformation. PAFF finances its activities from revenues generated by its endowment, the source of which was the Polish- American Enterprise Fund. The Fund has transferred approximately $255 million to the endowment. Since 2000 the Foundation has disbursed almost $120 million for its programs in order to bolster civil society, democracy, promote equal opportunities and social development with a special focus on initiatives aimed at leveling the playing field in education as well as reinforce citizens potential, particularly in villages and small towns. PAFF has also partnered with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help Polish public libraries in rural areas gain access to computers, Internet and training. As a result more than 3,300 libraries are being transformed into modern cultural, education and civic activity centers. More information: The United States Embassy in Warsaw protects and promotes American interests and develops relations with Poland through contacts with the Polish government, business, labor, agriculture, media and education leaders. Led by the United States Ambassador, the Embassy team explains and advocates the position of the United States Government on bilateral and multi-lateral political, economic, social, and scientific issues; carries out a wide-ranging assistance program designed to help promote democracy and a strong market economy in Poland; promotes the sale of American goods and services and American business interests in Poland and the region; provides visa and other documentary services to foreign nationals; facilitates cultural and educational exchange between the United States and Poland; and maintains contact between the Polish military services and their United States counterparts while facilitating cooperative activities in the region. More information is available at The U.S. Commercial Service, the trade promotion arm of the U.S. Department of Commerce s International Trade Administration, connects international firms to the best U.S. suppliers. Located across the United States and in U.S. Embassies and Consulates in nearly 80 countries, including Poland, the U.S. Commercial Service provides a range of services to facilitate trade between U.S. businesses and International Buyers. Our Commercial Specialists cover key sectors of the economy and have the expertise to help U.S. and Polish Businesses identify trade opportunities, find business partners, and obtain valuable market information. More information is available at The Educational Enterprise Foundation was established in 1991 by the Polish-American Enterprise Fund and the Polish State Treasury. The mission of the Foundation is to support the development of intellectual asset for the market economy. EEF accomplishes its mission by undertaking activities that contribute to equalizing national and international educational opportunities for young Poles from rural areas and small towns. The Foundation has 20 years experience in developing and implementing academic and social scholarship programs in which more than 37,000 scholarships were awarded. More information can be found at

6 It was the opportunity to meet wonderful people. [Marta Mendrycka, intern at Westinghouse, 2011] The internship in the U.S. did broaden my horizons! [Mateusz Pułapa, intern at Pittsburgh Glass Works, 2011] Experiences I gained and observations I made are priceless. [Karol Parys, intern at GE Hitachi, 2011]

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