Internships Abroad in Melbourne

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A Guide to Interning Abroad in Melbourne

Ranked as the most livable city in the world, Melbourne provides a fantastic Australian internship experience for international hopefuls. Melbourne, hailed as the cultural capital of Australia, offers boundless opportunities to view the nation’s visual arts in one of its many museums, performing arts shows, such as dance and theater, and even entertaining street art. With a bustling city center, those who intern in Melbourne will be kept busy in between internship duties. Interning abroad in Melbourne will expand your mind, not only in your field of work, but also as an international traveler.

Internships in Melbourne

An internship in Melbourne not only provides the opportunity to have your breath taken away by the brilliant landscapes and cultural events, but also offers an international internship experience in Australia’s financial capital. 

Business Administration & Accounting. Business internships in Melbourne are popular options. Interns learn quickly that, although formal business attire is always worn in a professional environment, Australian business culture is relatively laid back. Australians are very welcoming and encourage business interactions with new associates openly. Even large corporations place value on interpersonal relationships in the business world, making Melbourne a friendly place to break into the business world.

Communications & Law. Home to one of the top ten law schools in the world, Melbourne is a fantastic place to break into the industry. Law firms vary greatly in size and focus, from large corporate firms, to small non-profit firms, which guarantee you’ll find the perfect internship in law, as a law student or a student with pre-law interest. Internships in Melbourne in marketing communications, social media communication, and telecommunications are all available too, and businesses typically hire interns to teach and develop their skills, rather than to carry out busy work.

Fine Arts & Design. The celebrated art culture of Melbourne makes it the ideal location to intern in graphic arts or even performing arts. Working in the birthplace of Australian dance and theater, students interning in Melbourne will find themselves working under skilled professionals in these fields. The Australian Centre for the Living Image and the National Gallery of Victoria located in Melbourne draw student interns and art aficionados alike to the nation’s cultural capital.

Environmental Studies & Marine Sciences. Located on the southern coast of Australia, Melbourne’s easy access to the ocean provides boundless opportunities for internships in environmental studies and marine science. Hands-on work on the Pacific coast will give you the first-hand experience many employers are looking for from individuals with internship experience abroad. Melbourne’s distinct city planning – which emphasizes open space and natural areas – makes the subject of sustainable development jump off the page too.

Sports & Sports Management. Melbourne’s famous sport culture, famed as being more of a religion than a pastime, makes this city a great place to intern in sports economics, sports management, and exercise science. Home to no fewer than nine Australian rules football teams, several rugby teams, and various other sport teams from netball to rugby, Melbourne is a rich area for sports entertainment. Interning in Melbourne with any of these teams guarantees to teach you valuable work skills you couldn’t learn anywhere else. 

Work Culture. Melbourne’s work culture promotes collaboration, a zest for trying new things, and gaining personal experience in your field. International interns are often placed in groups with other interns, where they are encouraged to share their ideas and work together. Those who intern in Melbourne are also often encouraged to take part in service learning experiences, in which they are paired with volunteer organizations during the afternoons or weekends.

Life in Melbourne

When considering internships in Australia, many students pick Sydney, the nation’s capital. But Melbourne, the country’s second most populous city, offers a much different set of traditions and quirks that make interning abroad here an ideal experience. On the southern coast of the continent, Melbourne experiences all seasons, though winters are typically mild and rainy. 

Daily life in Melbourne inevitably involves sports, as the city is the birthplace of Australian Rules football and possesses numerous adamant fans. Football, along with rugby and cricket, will certainly be a part of your experience of interning in Melbourne. Sporting events in Melbourne are passionate and enthusiastic, and will expose you to all sorts of Aussie charm. 

This city boasts the title of Australia’s cultural capital, and its museums, theaters, and galleries are all testaments to that description. There will certainly be no shortage of weekend activities while interning abroad in Melbourne, with lush botanical gardens, aquariums housing exotic wildlife, and local performance stages tucked about the city. Melbourne, being a university town, also means it has a lively nightlife scene.

Melbourne itself is designed in an efficient block system, much like Manhattan, and many cultural centers are within walking distance. The city also has an excellent public transportation system, comprised mainly of buses with inexpensive fares. Students and interns rarely have trouble getting around the city, and many continue a long-standing tradition of renting a car and taking a weekend road trip along the enchanting Pacific Coast.

Salary & Costs

The cost of living in Melbourne is high; a recent study ranked it the fourth most expensive city in the world, and Australia as a whole is notorious for high prices. However, interns will find ways to curb their expenses while interning abroad, mainly by avoiding high rent apartments by staying in university “villages” or in a homestay.

Salary for interns in Melbourne will vary greatly depending on the type of internship you choose to complete; students traveling to Australia to complete their internship will find that visa restrictions often make being compensated for their work difficult or impossible. Depending on the duration of your internship or your company’s policy toward sponsorship of interns for work visas, you may or may not be eligible to earn salary. Typically, interns in the fields of medicine, law, and engineering should expect to be compensated; interns in other subjects should expect to pay their own way through their abroad experience.

Due to the high cost of living, a little planning ahead of time is necessary before beginning an internship in Melbourne; make a balanced budget plan for your trip, which encompasses rent, food, and transportation. A monthly ticket on public transportation can cost up to $200, and a cappuccino costs about $3.50. Experiencing Melbourne’s multitude of cultural events can cost you as well; movie theater tickets for two typically range at about $35 for two people and tickets to the theater can cost up to $150 for two.

Accommodations & Visas

Due to the fact that Melbourne is growing – both in size and in population – there is a high demand for housing within the city, and rent is therefore a huge expense. Universities in Australia are surrounded by “villages,” which are large groups of student apartments offered at a somewhat lower price. Staying in a village offers more personal freedom, and encourages social interactions with other students. Those interning in Melbourne at local companies can find arrangements within these villages. Homestays are another popular option that can help mitigate high living costs, and provide a first-hand experience with day-to-day life of Australians during your internship in Melbourne.

As with many trips abroad, if you are planning on interning abroad in Melbourne for longer than 90 days, a visa will be required prior to your travels. Australian interns typically opt to apply for student visas for longer stays, which means, due to visa stipulations, longer term internships offered in Melbourne are unpaid. The company you work for will have to send you a conditional offer of employment in order for you to lodge your official petition to receive a student or a temporary work visa. Though applying for a visa can be a daunting process, your university’s international office may be able to provide you assistance, as will the Australian company where you’ll be completing your internship. Australia has some special working holiday visas available for people 30 and under to look in to as well.

GoAbroad's Insider Tips

The Capital of Everything. When looking for an internship abroad, students typically look to be surrounded by passionate business people, beautiful landscapes, and an opportunity to explore different cultural practices. Melbourne offers all of these, and more! Melbourne is the financial, educational, and cultural capital of Australia, so opportunities for professional and individual advancement are around every corner.

The Price of a Cultural Experience. There’s no doubt that Melbourne is an amazing place to live, but it is also an expensive one. Even though there are countless museums, theaters, and sporting events, interns on a budget may find their options strictly limited.

Internship Competition. With boundless attractions, friendly locals, and beautiful scenery, its easy to understand the allure of living in Melbourne; therefore, securing an internship in Melbourne, especially in competitive fields such as communications, law, and sports management, can be a difficult task. For those who are goal-oriented in their pursuit of interning abroad in this beautiful Australian city, internships are certainly possible, but incredibly competitive.

Arts & Culture. With huge annual festivals, energetic street culture, and a pleasing mix of contemporary and modern architecture, Melbourne is an up-and-coming city with zest and charm to boot.

Read our comprehensive guide on intern abroad in Australia

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A Guide To
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