Swarthmore Future Entrepreneurship Program (SFEP)
Career Services’ Summer Funded Opportunities in Entrepreneurship
Student Info Session:
Learn about how SFEP works and get your questions answered. Powerpoint Presentation
2023 SFEP Opportunities
See below for Application Instructions
Career Services has a gathered listing of summer experiences at local start up companies through a partnership with Ben Franklin Technology Partners. Students (seniors and alumni are ineligible) can apply to posted opportunities and interview directly with participating start-up companies. Student will not receive any funding from the start up companies. In order to support the exposure to educational and entrepreneurial opportunities, the College will provide selected students with $5,500 in summer funding support for 10 weeks.
Pattie Kim-Keefer (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Please follow these directions to make sure that you’re able to view all SFEP opportunities and apply to the ones you’re interested in.
1. Log into Handshake. (If this link doesn’t open up to a list of SFEP opportunities, move to step 2.)
2. In the search bar, type in “SFEP” and hit enter for a list of all experiences that are a part of this program. All SFEP experiences will have the title labeled “SFEP: ________” A full list of opportunities is also available; you can also type in the employer name and search for the opportunity that way.
3. Apply to as many opportunities that are of interest to you. You will need a resume to apply. If you haven’t had your application materials reviewed, please attend Career Peer Advisor Drop-Ins (M-F 1-4:30pm) OR email CPA@swarthmore.edu to get your resume reviewed.
4. Please note that Career Services does not participate in the start up companies’ selection processes in any way. The decisions of the start up companies are completely independent of Swarthmore College and do not create an employment relationship between you and the College.
$5,500 is the maximum amount that a student may be awarded for summer funding. Should you accept an SFEP opportunity, you are not allowed to apply for additional funding for this program through the College.
Please note that students who are United States citizens, Resident Aliens or have current DACA status will not have taxes withheld from the payment (nor will it be reported to the IRS); however, the IRS considers this payment income to the recipient. When filing your tax return, you must report the amount of this payment as income. If you file a FAFSA for financial aid, the payment must also be included as part of your gross income.
THE COLLEGE CANNOT OFFER ANY TAX ADVICE TO YOU RELATING TO THIS PAYMENT. IT IS RECOMMENDED, HOWEVER, THAT YOU KEEP CAREFUL RECORDS AND (SINCE INDIVIDUAL TAX LIABILITY DEPENDS ON EACH INDIVIDUAL’S CIRCUMSTANCES) YOU SHOULD CONTACT A PERSONAL TAX ADVISOR WITH ANY QUESTIONS OR CONCERNS.
The regulations regarding federal tax withholding and reporting are different for international students who are classified as non-resident aliens for income tax purposes. This income will be reported to the IRS as income to the recipient. As a result, if you are not a United States citizen, you will need to contact Joseph Cataldi in the Business Office (email@example.com) to learn how you will be affected. Be advised that your funds will not be released until this step has been completed.
Opportunities through SFEP are available to international students with approved Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or Optional Practical Training (OPT)
If you are a current F-1/J1 international student at Swarthmore College you will need to confirm your eligibility to work before you accept any SFEP opportunities. It is strongly advised to contact the International Student Center (ISC) regarding information on eligibility for work authorization to ensure compliance with internship requirements and USCIS regulations.
Hear from some of your Swarthmore peers about their SFEP experiences below!
“As a part of the company, I was given immense freedom to explore areas of interest and truly felt that my voice mattered. Every day I was challenged with something new, a project that required me to go into the backend of a software I had never before used or manning a booth at a university orientation. Beyond the direct professional development I underwent through day-to-day work, I was able to better understand my interests and hone my career path as a result. […] I wasn’t simply an intern, my role was not to perform menial tasks or busy-work, I was considered a bright, valuable mind and was surrounded by passionate people eager to collaborate.”
– Maya Lahiri ’24 | NeuroFlow
“[This opportunity] allowed me to realize that while I am not that averse to working purely backend, coding and designing features that others have ideated, I would prefer to work as one of those creating and developing the ideas, discussing the pros and cons of each individual idea, and how various ideas could be combined or improved upon. Essentially, I would like to make use of my creativity, while having a strong understanding of what is possible and feasible on the backend. […] The daily meetings with my mentor, in particular, greatly helped me in being clear on what I presented. As each day, I needed to report what I was doing, these meetings allowed me to learn how to present my work in a way that is succinct, while not being afraid to point out any challenges I encountered.”
– Jeffrey Zhang ’25 | SocialLadder
“One of the core components of SFEP is working with startups rather than big companies. I am especially grateful for that since I’ve always been interested to learn the difference between the two. Startup work was a very vibrant and diverse experience for me. Switching between types of responsibility within the company has dramatically developed my flexibility and adaptation skills. Such skills are critical for me as a student and a future professional. Working in a relatively small group taught me the importance of communication skills and a personality-oriented approach to collaboration. This experience brought me meaningful professional interactions that I usually wouldn’t be able to get in a big corporation.”
– Viktoriia Zakharova ’24 | Pression
“Over the summer, I not only learned so much about the tech and startup industry, I also learned many key aspects of conduct and interpersonal skills within a professional setting. For example, I learned that open communication is essential to move forward with an issue and also to not be afraid to ask a lot of questions. [This experience] was informative and transformational for me as I was able to get a glimpse of life beyond college and I’m very excited to see where I can take my future career. I learned much about an industry that I wish to be a part of and I was able to build a solid foundation of professional and interpersonal skills through experience and the advice from my mentors.”
– Michael Yan ’23 | Roundtrip