UC Berkeley Extension
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UC Berkeley Extension: Optimizing employability through internships and OPT

Fine-tune your education with a precise curriculum that prepares you to enter or advance in your field.

With UC Berkeley Extension’s professional certificates, you can optimize your future employability through internships and your eligibility to apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT).

The continuing education branch of the University of California, Berkeley, the school provides an array of semester- or academic year–long certificate programs that pair practical skills with career-boosting opportunities. The university is known for its academic and innovative excellence, having been named a top global university by US News & World Report.

Ideal for all students looking to explore their career prospects while studying in the incredible San Francisco Bay Area, home to Silicon Valley, UC Berkeley Extension offers an enriching educational and cultural experience.

Giving you the resources to develop and master your destiny, students and graduates at the school value the freedom of matching courses to their career motivations.

“Being able to cater the courses to the things I wanted to learn was a big value-add for me,” explains UC Berkeley Extension Business Administration graduate Khizar Sultan.

As a student at UC Berkeley Extension, you’ll receive a world-class education through semester-long certificates that cover diverse and in-demand subject areas.

Upon meeting the English Language Proficiency requirements, you’re free to delve into the seven subject areas of Project Management, Corporate Finance and Financial Analytics, Digital Marketing Management, UX/UI Design, Data Science, Business Administration and Management, International Business Development and Entrepreneurship and Startup Management, all providing you with a valued and professional certificate at the end of your studies.

Depending on your length of study, these programs could connect you to insightful internships, Optional Practical Training (OPT) opportunities or both.

Providing real-world technical skills and insightful working opportunities, these two additions to your professional program at UC Berkeley Extension are equally beneficial to your long-term plans.

Internship opportunities

After selecting your program from the different subject areas, you can choose to pursue a 1-semester certificate where you’ll complete 8 units of core courses and an innovative career development course.

UC Berkeley Extension

Source: UC Berkeley Extension

Alternatively, you can opt for a 2-Semester certificate with 16 units of core courses and the engaging career development course.

You also have the chance to take electives if you want to learn more about a subject area, get an introduction to a complementary subject area or expand your knowledge in any particular field!

What’s great about these professional options at UC Berkeley Extension is that they all grant you eligibility for a three-month internship with a leading San Francisco or Silicon Valley company.

The perfect opportunity to put your newfound skills to work, gain work experience and expand your professional network, internships allow you to see first-hand how a US business runs, giving you a competitive edge when you’re ready to land a full-time position in your desired field.

This valuable form of on-site work experience will be directly related to your career goals or fields of interest, and you’ll get to test drive your chosen discipline before applying for a full-length degree at university or diving straight into the workplace.

After enrolling in the Professional Program in UX Design at UC Berkeley Extension, Kitty He from China continued to refine her career goals through an internship at EPAM in San Francisco, recommended to her by the UX Program Director.

UC Berkeley Extension

Source: UC Berkeley Extension

As a strategic design intern, Kitty worked in a team of four designing a virtual mobile donation app, aimed at making it easier for San Francisco Bay Area residents to donate old kitchen cabinets to Habitat for Humanity in the neighboring city of Oakland.

During this project, Kitty learned to plan and conduct user research, create user-experience deliverables, generate user-interface designs, acquire practical design and research skills, and develop the effective communication and presentation expertise required to pitch ideas and prototypes to stakeholders. Kitty is just one example of how UC Berkeley Extension programs and their certificates trigger golden career prospects.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Designed to put knowledge from your studies to use and for you to experience how US businesses operate, OPT could put you in any role—from managing schedules, costs and project scope for the launch of a new app, to ensuring communication and quality management for a new website project.

Although temporary, the 12 months of work experience and salary you gain through OPT is a unique opportunity – especially for students at Berkeley, as the chance to work in the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley means learning from leading experts at some of the most innovative companies in the world!

F-1 international students who have been full-time students for at least two consecutive semesters at UC Berkeley Extension and plan to seek employment in the United States in their fields are eligible to apply for paid temporary work authorization in the United States, also known as Optional Practical Training (OPT).

UC Berkeley Extension

Source: UC Berkeley Extension

Only through the 2-Semester certificate route will you be able to optimize your employability through Optional Practical Training (OPT) at UC Berkeley Extension.

Benefiting from her OPT work authorization, Luisa Naranjo Azcarate is now working for Google Cloud.

After completing two UC Berkeley Extension professional certificates in Business Administration and Marketing, and an internship working in sales and marketing development at software company Gigwell, Luisa used her OPT eligibility to further expose her skills in the US job market.

From UC Berkeley Extension to her eventual employment at Google, Luisa fell in love with California and its abundance of career openings.

“In the competitive job market, it’s important to say I went to UC Berkeley Extension. And when I go back to my country, this experience and having the diploma will help me.

“The instructors also encouraged us to express our opinions without any judgment. That was very powerful and sparked a lot of conversations. It allowed us to evaluate ideas from a different perspective and in a way you would have never thought of before,” she shares.

A school that unites your aspirations with elite academics, why not find out which subject suits you best at UC Berkeley Extension?

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