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Student Exchange Travels And Summer Research Opportunities

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Option 1 - In Person Travel Exchange

  • The program is primarily a virtual networking program. However, selected students who participate well in part 1 - 3 are eligible for student exchange and research placements in any of the partner countries.

  • They can also participate in the summer research group projects (online or as part of the in person exchanges).

  • Note that several schools do NOT participate in the exchanges. Check with the program to find out if your school is a travel partner for a particular year. 

  • Exchanges are for basic sciences research internships only. The program is a preclinical program to foster the basic sciences experience and immersion into academic life in the host country. The above is best achieved via a laboratory experience. Rarely, students get the opportunity to shadow clinicians if the host institution allows. This will be in addition to a laboratory position and cannot replace a laboratory rotation. As a preclinical program we cannot accommodate sole clinical rotations in any of our partner countries. Only apply to this portion of the program if you are interested in the science experience.

  • Lab assignments are for 8 weeks at a minimum

    • (with the exception of University of Miland and Tokyo Women's Medical University with stays of 4 weeks), as a courtesy to the host laboratories.

    • 3 months is the maximum for a short-term visitor at Columbia University.


Lab selections


  • The number of laboratory slots are limited and we will assign them based on your participation in the fall program.

  • Only students preselected by your professor will be considered (exception - US schools and University of Cambridge). Please note, once you selected a slot you are obligated to go. If your travel is depending on funding or a grant you need to indicate so in your application. You will not be placed unit you confirm funding.

  • The program does not provide funding. 

  • Lab selections are subject to change every year. 

  • Updates on lab placements will be shared in early spring. By mid spring students should be notified if they are placed or not. 

  • Please do NOT use the network to find a laboratory slot on your own. This is a violation of our agreement with the partner schools.


Travel periods


There are several travel groups, depending on your school, your school vacation, and summer exams. Traveling groups are determined by your home school:


Travel group 1 – June/July (8 weeks) – University of Helsinki

Travel group 2 – July/August (8 weeks) – Columbia University, National Taiwan University, King's College London, University of Cambridge, University of Copenhagen, University of Milan, University of Barcelona, Tokyo Women’s Medical University. If you are traveling to New York please note that Columbia students are away during this travel group.

Travel group 3 – August to October (8 weeks) -  Ludwig Maximilians University, Martin Luther University, Medical University of Vienna, Kyoto University. If you are traveling later in August, please note there are no social summer activities after September.

Travel group 4 – November/December - University of Sydney, selected students from other schools


If your school is not listed please contact the senior National Student Leaders.

You should adhere to these travel groups. We do make exceptions (i.e. for students with family or students who serve on military service duty) , but please note that there will be no scheduled social activities outside of the travel group times. We try to connect you with students from all schools during the travel group times and plan social activities around them (e.g., museums, concerts, picnics, walking tours). Thus, traveling outside the group times will potentially isolate you. 

Your social leader and National Student Leaders are your contacts during your travels. Please do not forget to visit the host faculty member when you are visiting. Host faculty members are listed here.



Most participating countries are part of the US ESTA visa waiver country list.

The Visa Waiver Program (VWP), administered by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in consultation with the State Department, permits citizens of 38 countries to travel to the United States for business or tourism for stays of up to 90 days without a visa. In return, those 38 countries must permit U.S. citizens and nationals to travel to their countries for a similar length of time without a visa for business or tourism purposes.

For more information and a full list of countries see:


Students who are citizens from non-ESTA visa waiver countries must obtain a B1/B2 visa for the US. Please inquire within the international office of the partner school or consulate of the other country for requirements if you plan to travel there.



Your primary sources are your international peers. Please contact your NSL(s). For Columbia housing see general information below. In the spring, prior to summer travel, students can use the facebook site to post searches and offer sublets. Students in travel group 4 traveling to Columbia University qualify for Columbia short-term housing.

For more info on Columbia housing see here.


The program does not provide travel funding. Several schools offer travel funds. Please check with your schools directly. 


More Details

King's College London, UK

Students traveling to King's College London, UK:

•    There is no Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with King's College and participating universities, and so all placements are informal
•    There is no formal accreditation 
•    Accommodation cannot be arranged through King's and there is no scholarship scheme to provide support for living expenses

Incoming students:
If you are interested in finding an internship at King’s will need to send a CV, a range of research interests (in addition to their main research passion) and a letter stating that you have financial support. We will endeavour to match you with a research team. Please take the opportunity to look at the research interests of members of the Faculty of Life Science and Medicine and of the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience to identify potential hosts

Please contact past participants and National Student Leaders for more details on specific details.

Option 2 - Student Research Pods


Beginning in 2022 the program offers virtual student group research for selected students. Students work in "pods" of 3-5 under the supervision of an international faculty member. The research is done virtually or in combination with in person travels. Duration varies. All projects will begin in summer. Only selected students are eligible (based on their teamwork performance in the fall program).

Option 3 - Long-term Research


  • For German and Austrian students limited slots are available for work on their dissertations – these will be for a minimum of 12 months. This is meant for students to conduct their doctoral thesis ("Dissertation") or Master's work ("Magister").

  • For UK students who would like to spend their intercalated year abroad the basic sciences exchanges are offered. A funding letter from your school or an official agency is needed. 

  • For incoming travelers to the US please note a funding letter from your school or an official funding agency is needed that confirms that you have access funds. This funding is for your personal expenses and does not mean it will cost you this much. However, the visa departments will need proof that you have access to this amount. Further a supporting letter from your school is needed as well.  

  • Full participation in the International Collaboration and Exchange Program is a prerequisite for selection.

Option 4 - Social Activities and Short-Term Academic  Immersion Exchange Travels (AIT)

We take great pride to be regarded as a student networking program.


  • All student visits (short-term and long-term) are designed for students to socialize and mingle. Whether you intern at Columbia or at one of the partner universities we encourage you to meet other ICE program students so you can build and maintain your network for the future. 

  • National Social Leaders and social "buddies" are expected to plan social activities around your stay. Please ask to be connected to a local International Collaboration and Exchange Social Leader. You need to let them know when you will be arriving and leaving so you can meet the other students from your travel pod. ICE students who do not travel are expected to join these social activities and meet the incoming students for further networking.

  • Starting in 2022 we offer self-funded academic short-term immersion visits (AIT). Details will be shared at the beginning of the program. 

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