Internships & Training

—Image Courtesy of Anna Hansson

Information for US Host Firms

Why Host an ASF Exchange Visitor?

By hosting a Scandinavian intern or trainee, you gain:

  • A skilled, motivated staff member capable of making a real contribution to your firm
  • A valuable contact for future business overseas
  • A culturally enriching experience for your staff
  • New perspectives and fresh ideas

The benefits of hosting an exchange visitor reach beyond the work place to the U.S. host community and the Scandinavian community to which s/he returns.

Selecting an Intern/a Trainee

ASF interns or trainees are young Scandinavians who are genuinely curious about the U.S., motivated to succeed in their work and committed to meeting the expectations of their U.S. host firms. They are carefully screened by our cooperating offices in each of the Scandinavian countries to make sure they meet the criteria established by ASF and the U.S. Government for participation in this program. All are fluent in English at the level required for the position and have a solid education in their field.

If you would like to offer a position to a student, recent graduate or young professional and you feel that your position meets the assignment guidelines, get in touch with ASF. If you have a particular applicant in mind, ask him/her to contact ASF’s cooperating office to request an application packet.

ASF's Role as a J-1 Visa Sponsor

ASF offers to:

  • Link candidates with U.S. firms and provides the firm with the candidate’s credentials and references.
  • Provide visa sponsorship through its Exchange Visitor (J visa) Program, which encourages opportunities to learn while earning and promotes cross-cultural understanding.
  • Serve as the primary resource for information on government regulations, taxation, and practical advice on all questions relating to the trainee’s program.

The Internship/Training Assignment

The host firm should offer an assignment that is consistent with the applicant’s background and educational interests, and extend the courtesies it would to a new staff member unfamiliar with the area. The U. S. host firm is asked to complete a Training/Internship Placement Plan (Adobe PDF) and a supplementary profile of the firm (Adobe PDF).

The internship or training assignment must provide a structured and guided work-based learning program set forth in the an individualized Trainee/Internship Placement Plan which provides a structured and guided work-based learning program providing exposure to American techniques, methodologies, and expertise while enhancing the trainee’s or intern’s understanding of American culture and society. Details such as hours, wage, benefits, etc. will also be requested.


Please note the following assignment guidelines:

  • Assignment may be up to 12 months in duration for interns and up to 18 months for trainees (except in agriculture and hospitality which are a maximum of twelve months for either interns or trainees). The position must be full-time (at least 32 hours per week).
  • Intern’s income should be on par with local wages and be adequate to cover living expenses during the assignment. Positions that are paid on a commission-only or contractor basis are not appropriate for trainees. Interns and trainees may not be considered or paid as independent contractors.
  • Assistance in securing temporary accommodation for the intern is appreciated.
  • Trainees and Interns cover the costs of international airfare and accident and illness insurance coverage.

Additional Requirements

The Department of State further requires program sponsors to obtain the following information fromthe U.S. host firm:

  1. Employer Identification Number (EIN) used for tax purposes;
    Verification of Workman’s Compensation Insurance Policy.

For more information, contact


Following is a list of resources and search strategies to identify U.S. firms and some tips on resume writing and how to approach the U.S. firm.

We have prepared these tips to get you started in your search. Keep in mind that the internship or training must be in your field and can last for twelve months if you are an intern and eighteen months maximum as a trainee, after which you must return home. We offer these tips to help you gain the internship/training position that is right for you. The rest is up to you.

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List of Participating Host Firms

Click here for a list of host firms ASF worked with recently.

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Is your firm interested in hosting a Scandinavian intern or trainee?

For more information please contact the Internships & Training Department staff at