IFSA Summer Internships in Barcelona
Build your resume with an eight-week internship in the incomparable Barcelona, where you can enjoy the seaside Mediterranean culture, tapas, and nightlife while gaining meaningful work experience. With easy access to the rest of Europe, explore all Barcelona has to offer during the week and visit other European cities on the weekends.
Add an optional elective class and earn extra credits toward your degree.
Details at a Glance
3 - 7
Some placements may require 4 semesters of university-level Spanish. Learn More.
Enhance your learning and develop marketable skills with an eight-week Summer Internship in Barcelona.
If you’ve never studied Spanish before, you’ll take this introductory seminar taught intensively at the beginning of your summer session to complement the IFSA internship experience. By introducing key words and phrases in the classroom—and venturing out into the city to practice them—this class also provides insights into local customs and daily life in Barcelona. (1 U.S. semester credit hour)
International Internship Seminar
All internships include participation in the International Internship Seminar, which uses a blended learning framework with online and in-person components. Online modules provide structured opportunities to reflect on the practical experience of the internship, learn more about your host country’s business culture, and further develop the professional skills needed for a successful transition from undergraduate coursework into a career or graduate school. Plus, you will engage with an online global cohort of IFSA internship participants, gaining exposure to business cultures around the world. At your IFSA location, you will meet in-person with fellow interns to participate in exclusive field visits, learn from guest speakers about working across cultures, and attend workshops on leveraging your strengths for your future job search at home or abroad. (3 U.S. semester credit hours)
You may enroll in one additional class. Not all classes may be offered in a given term. Click on each link below for a detailed class syllabus.
The Economics of Professional Soccer
Soccer is the most popularly played and supported sport in the world. Professional soccer is both a globalized economic market and a cultural force for social change. The global soccer ecosphere is complex and includes athletes, clubs, leagues, federations, sponsors, investors, owners, fans, consumers, and companies and start-ups. The revenue flowing into the game are on an upward trajectory, especially thanks to the technology and innovation boom of the last decade. FC Barcelona, one of the top soccer brands in the world, was valued at more than $1.5 billion in 2020 and has fans around the world. Meanwhile, football is recognized as a powerful tool to improve lives and communities and contribute to the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. This class explores the complex and integrated economic and social dimensions of professional soccer in Spain and worldwide. (3 U.S. semester credit hours)
Food Culture and Spanish Society
Living in a time where food is no longer limited to home and restaurant kitchens, it is worth reflecting about the place food has in a globalized world. The study of food is a common topic, and several disciplines have approached it through a wide set of theoretical interpretations and methodological approaches. Even though we need food to survive and it is present in every society and culture, we cannot take for granted that we eat the same food for the same reasons at the same time; or assume that food is available everywhere with the same quality and under the same conditions. In many respects, food is also a matter of national security and an alternative for economic growth. Furthermore, food is an integral part of national and local identities, as much as of our heritage, as it is a product for tourism consumption. Understanding food in culture in society is therefore a local and global concern. This class examines all of these issues from anthropological and sociological perspectives and draws on the rich culinary situation of the class in Barcelona throughout. (3 U.S. semester credit hours)
Identity and Politics in Spain
After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, many authors and intellectuals proclaimed the end of ideologies and the rise of identity as the new central element of existence in the West. Thirty years later, identity is back, nationalism, LGBTQ+ rights, feminist movements, Black Lives Matter, groups all over the planet asking for fairer representation. Spain is no exception to that reality. Since the 19th century, with the rise of both Catalan and Basque secessionist movements, along with the articulation of a fiercely centralistic Spanish Nationalism, the identity question has been on the political agenda every now and then. But since the Spanish accession to the European Economic Community (EEC), in 1986, the Spanish identity is coexisting with many other identities within the European frame, and not always the coexistence is peaceful and comfortable. This class examines the different levels of identity that Spanish people profess and how these different levels affect politics, economics, and society since 1975, when the Spanish dictator Francisco Franco died. (3 U.S. semester credit hours)
Sustainability and the Global City
This class introduces urban sustainability from multiple disciplinary perspectives. It aims to provide students with the theoretical and methodological tools with which to evaluate potential for sustainable urbanism. Focusing on Barcelona alongside comparative global case studies, students will be exposed to urban planning and both natural and built environments in order to evaluate the common challenges and successes related to sustainability efforts. Through experiential earning opportunities, students will develop first-hand context as they examine various facets of sustainable urbanization in Barcelona. (3 U.S. semester credit hours)
Can I take my classes in Spanish?
To enroll in our Spanish-taught classes at this program, you must have a specific language level. Please visit our Language Requirements page for more details. If you have questions about whether you qualify, contact your IFSA Enrollment Counselor.
IFSA internships include real-world work experience, along with developing intercultural skills and experiences that are key to personal, academic, and professional success. Expect to devote a total of 120 hours working with your host organization, with supervision from your seminar instructor, coordinated by on-site IFSA team members. In addition, interns complete the International Internship Seminar for 3 U.S. semester credit hours. Internships are not remunerated.
Students have interned at galleries and museums, business incubators, development agencies, religiously affiliated non-profits, marketing firms, and human rights advocacy groups in Barcelona.
Your goals are carefully considered, tailoring the placement process to ensure the best possible fit. Keep in mind that final placements depend on your skills, prior experience, and availability. Although every effort is made to match your placement with your preferred field or area of business, it can’t be guaranteed. Most internships are conducted in English. If you have had at least four semesters of Spanish language instruction, ask your IFSA Enrollment Counselor about opportunities to conduct your internship in Spanish.
Application. After you submit your application, resume, and IFSA Internship Intent Form, an IFSA Enrollment Counselor and an on-site IFSA Team member will work with you to identify your professional strengths, review your goals, and refine your internship interests to establish a match. From there, you’ll have an interview with your potential internship host. You will be provided with tips and resources to prepare for your interview.
Sample Placements. The following are examples of internships IFSA students have recently completed. Placement options vary from term to term.
Organization: Accounting and finance firm
Subjects Areas: Accounting, Finance, Marketing
Potential Projects: You can work on market research and analysis, financial trends, multinational consulting, and auditing projects.
Organization: Education and mentoring organization
Subjects Areas: Education Studies, Marketing
Potential Projects: You can work on marketing and social media for education campaigns, or mentor students to match them with potential future employment.
Organization: Corporate finance company focused on acquisitions and mergers
Subjects Areas: Business, Finance, Organizational Management
Organization: Coworking, mentoring and networking team
Subjects Areas: Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Organizational Management
Potential Projects: From design to international business to sports events planning, you can work on different projects within the coworking community of entrepreneurs and start-ups.
Organization: Government tourism agency
Subjects Areas: Communications, Marketing
Potential Projects: Work on social media marketing and international campaigns promoting Cataluña tourism.
Organization: Developer of professional software for retail management
Subjects Areas: Business, Computer Science, Marketing
Potential Projects: Work on operations, sports business, and retail projects.
Organization: Provider of subscription-based meal kits in Barcelona
Subjects Areas: Communications, Marketing, Media/Multimedia Studies
Potential Projects: Work on marketing, communications, and web and app design projects.
Organization: A global manufacturer and provider of hybrid packaging solutions for beauty brands
Subjects Areas: Communications, Human Resources, Marketing, Organizational Management
Potential Projects: You can work in areas of the organization including human resources, marketing, international business relations, and global manufacturing.
Organization: A crowdfunding site which focuses on projects which generate a collective return through promoting the common, open source code and/or free knowledge.
Subjects Areas: Advertising, Communications, Social Work
Potential Projects: You can work on different projects to promote the organization and expand its visibility.
- You must be at least 18 years of age. Students under 18 may be accepted on a case-by-case basis.
- You must be currently attending or recently graduated from a U.S. or Canadian community college, technical college, two-year college, four-year college, or four-year university.
- You must have completed at least one (1) semester of study at your home institution before the beginning of the term.
Visa/Residence Permit Requirement
Not required for U.S. or Canadian citizens. A visa may be required if you are a citizen of another country.
Upon completion of your program, IFSA will send an official Butler University transcript to your home university with your coursework converted to the U.S. semester credit hour system. You will also have access to an unofficial transcript in your IFSA Student Portal. The transcript reflects courses taken, credits attempted, and grades earned during your term abroad. This service is included in your study abroad program at no additional cost. See our Transcripts page for more information.
Activities and excursions are designed to pull you into the communities you visit and encourage cultural connections of every kind. There’s no extra fee to participate in these optional outings—everything is included in your program fee.
Below are examples from previous terms; outings may be different for your program. We’ll make every effort to run them all, but sometimes things we can’t control, such as local regulations and health protocols, get in the way. As result, we cannot guarantee activities and excursions.
- Catalan Cooking Class: Experience authentic Catalan cuisine during a Catalan cooking class preparing famous Spanish dishes.
- Sagrada Familia Tour: Tour Sagrada Familia church, one of the most architectonic beauties of Barcelona.
- Museum of Art Visit: Bask in the stunning view of Barcelona from the Museum of Art and peruse the most comprehensive collection of Catalan art in the world.
- Gothic Quarter Tour: Enjoy a guided tour of the Gothic Quarter and several other prominent Barcelona neighborhoods.
- Figueres Day Trip: Visit Figueres, the birthplace of Salvador Dalí, and Girona, a medieval, walled city and site of several filming locations for The Game of Thrones.
- Calella Day Trip: Calella is small town on the Costa Brava which preserves its picturesque white houses and traditional fishing village along the Mediterranean.
- Montserrat Day Trip: Montserrat is a stunning mountain landscape topped with a famous Benedictine monastery and perfect for hiking excursions.
- Tarragona Day Trip: Tarragona is where you can find the second most important ancient Roman sites in Spain including a mosaic-packed museum and a seaside amphitheater.
Housing and Meals
Barcelona students typically live in flats (apartments) shared by four to six IFSA students. Locations vary but are typically in neighborhoods with plenty of local charm, no more than 30 minutes from the IFSA Program Center via public transportation.
Flatmates could include all genders. Bedrooms are shared by same gender students. Keep in mind that students who request and are placed in single bedrooms incur an additional fee to cover the higher cost. Students are responsible for their own meals, either cooking in their flat or eating out—in Barcelona, there are delicious options at every turn.
Take a look at Carrer Córsega 528 to see what your Barcelona home might be like:
- Location: Barcelona’s Eixample district.
- Commute: A 25-minute walk or 12-minute bus ride to the IFSA Program Center.
- Living space: Apartments include single and shared bedrooms with single beds and storage, living space, a kitchen and eating area, and a bathroom. Sometimes two students share one desk. Complete bedding and towels provided at program start. Kitchens are equipped with stovetop, oven, refrigerator, and basic dishes and kitchenware for all residents.
- Meals: No meal plan. Students prepare or purchase meals, and often tell us cooking together is a fun, social part of the day.
- Other details: Internet included. Washing machine and drying rack in each apartment.
- Nearby: Cafes, fresh markets, supermarkets, public transportation, and galleries. La Sagrada Familia. Casa Batlló. Casa Milà. Passeig de Gràcia.