Why does MISTI require such detailed academic and language preparation?
Learn a foreign language

To make sure you are talking about a French soccer champion instead of mushroom (champignon). So that you hand your new friend in Stuttgart a birthday present, not a box of poison (gift). And to make sure that when you're reading a book (kàn shū) in Shanghai, you don't tell your supervisor you're chopping down a tree (kǎn shù).

And it’s not just about the language. It's about how your MISTI experience will prepare you to survive and thrive in an era of globalized industry and research. When you understand your host country–its history, language, culture and customs–you’ll be able to forge connections there that are meaningful and founded on mutual respect.   

MISTI Program Requirements

To be eligible for a MISTI internship, undergraduates must complete MISTI course requirements, typically four semesters of the appropriate language courses (or equivalent proficiency) and/or one course in the history, politics or culture of the host country.

  • Exact requirements vary by country.
  • Graduate students are exempt from these requirements.
  • There is no language requirement for internships in India, Israel and Italy.
  • Requirements for MISTI teaching and other programs vary by program.

Learn more about MISTI student programs and their requirements.