Internships

Mary Washington’s location midway between two centers of politics–Richmond and Washington, D.C.–offers students in International Affairs and Political Science numerous opportunities for internships.

In the past several years, our majors have had internships in many congressional and other governmental offices in Washington, Richmond, and Fredericksburg, as well as with the World Bank, the American Enterprise Institute, Common Cause, ABC News, and The Washington Monthly. We can accurately state that no major in our department has ever sought, and failed to receive, an internship.

Internships in Political Science and International Affairs

One Heart Source:

Internship/Volunteer: One Heart Source is currently accepting applications for our 2017 Experiential Learning Programs in Cape Town, South Africa and Jamaica. They are offering a variety of 2 and 4-week volunteer programs and internships next summer. [App due October 28]

 

Virginia Coalition for Open Government:

Chip Woodrum Legislative Internship: Interns will directly witness the making of law in the Commonwealth and will educate the coalition’s members and the public about legislation that could affect their ability to keep their state and local governments open and accountable. The position is open to juniors, seniors, recent graduates and graduate students.

 

National Security Network:

Research Internship: The internship provides the unique opportunity to gain an understanding of the research and policy development processes of a non-profit foreign policy organization. [App due April 6]

General Internship: The internship provides the unique opportunity to gain an understanding of the operation of a non-profit foreign policy organization at all levels: policy/research, communications, outreach, coalition building, and administration. [App due April 6]

 

Center for American Progress: [Due February 16!!]

External Affairs Internship: External Affairs amplifies the Center for American Progress’ policy voice by forging relationships with progressive groups, think tanks, scholars, community leaders, and elected officials at the federal, state, and local levels. The department raises awareness of the Center and its work, while connecting Center staff with progressive allies.

National Security Internship: The National Security department seeks to advance a strong progressive vision for U.S. foreign policy. Typical responsibilities for National Security interns may include writing memos, columns, event summaries, and reports; carrying out web-based research on issue areas; compiling data; updating documents on topics of current pertinence; assisting in administrative projects; and preparing for events and large meetings.

Research Team Internship: The American Progress research team works on both rapid-response and long-term research and communications projects. The team’s core products are The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org. The Progress Report, American Progress’s signature product, is a daily newsletter reaching over 90,000 subscribers with a progressive analysis of the news.

ThinkProgress War Room Internship:  The American Progress Research team works on both rapid-response and long-term research and communications projects. The team’s core products are The Progress Report and ThinkProgress.org. The Progress Report, American Progress’s signature product, is a daily newsletter reaching more than 90,000 subscribers with a progressive analysis of the news.

Application Forms and information is here.

Institute for the Study of War: [Due March 14] Note: Most interns are trained in using Palantir (open-source intelligence data-base).

Research Internship – Iraq Project: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of research intern with the Iraq Project during the summer semester. The Iraq program examines the resurgence of al Qaeda, the spillover between Iraq and Syria, and Iraq’s foreign relations and politics.  Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research.

Research Internship – Afghanistan Project: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of research intern with the Afghanistan project during the summer semester, during which Afghanistan’s presidential elections are slated to occur. ISW publishes regular research reports on Afghanistan’s politics and security in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public.  Interns with the ability to read the Farsi, Dari, or Pashto language and to conduct research in one of those languages are highly desired.

Research Intern—Syria Project: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of research intern with the Syria Project for the summer semester.  ISW’s Syria project has become a leading source of innovative analysis and information about the Syrian civil war. Interns will provide critical assistance to our researchers. Interns will be trained to use innovative technologies to assist their research, as Syrian social media is a key source of information on this conflict. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic or Farsi are highly desired.

Research Intern—Lebanon/Hezbollah Project: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of research intern with the Lebanon/Hezbollah Project for the summer semester. This project examines especially the spillover between Syria and Lebanon. Interns with the ability to read the Arabic or Farsi language and to conduct research in one of those languages are highly desired.

Research Intern—Egypt Security Project: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of research intern with the Egypt Security Project for the summer semester. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic are highly desired. Knowledge of the Python coding language is also highly desired.

Research Internship – Counterterrorism in the Middle East: The Institute for the Study of War is seeking motivated and experienced university students or recent graduates to fill the position of counterterrorism intern during the summer semester. ISW publishes regular research reports on al Qaeda in Iraq and Syria as well as other terrorist networks in the Middle East in order to inform policy makers and journalists in Washington, DC, as well as the general public. This portfolio focuses upon network analysis, center of gravity analysis, and intelligence from open sources. Interns with the ability to read and conduct research in Arabic are highly desired.  Knowledge of the Python coding language is also highly desired.

 

American Enterprise Institute: [Floating Due date]

Military Strategy and the U.S. Defense Budget Internship: AEI resident fellow, Mackenzie Eaglen, specializes in defense strategy, budget, military readiness and the defense industrial base. An intern in her department will assist in compiling and preparing a series of reports on restoring American military dominance across the services. Reports will include the future of warfare and the future direction of the Air Force and Navy. Assignments may include attending Congressional hearings on the defense budget and responding to current events relating to military strategy issues. Familiarity with the U.S. defense budget is a plus. Previous experience with the Pentagon, Capitol Hill, or other think tanks preferred.

Middle East Studies Internship: Danielle Pletka, Vice President of AEI’s Foreign and Defense Studies Department, focuses on Iran and the Arab World. Her current research projects include an examination of regional strategies for coping with Iran’s influence in the Middle East and regular articles and op-eds.  Interns will assist with research on Iran’s influence in the Middle East and research for article’s on US foreign policy, US politics, the Arab Spring, and Israel. Strong coherent research and writing skills, as well as strong organizational skills, are a must for this internship. Applicants should be comfortable working under deadlines. A background in Middle East studies and interest in US foreign policy is ideal. Fluency in Arabic or Farsi is a plus.

 

Iranian Studies Internship: J. Matthew McInnis is a Resident Fellow at AEI, where he focuses on Iran, specifically its intentions, strategic culture and military power. The Iran interns will be responsible for researching US defense policy in the Middle East, specifically US-Iran security policy. The interns will also conduct research in support of journal publications and op-eds on Iran’s strategic decision-making and US competitive strategies in the Middle East. The ideal intern candidate will have a strong academic record, demonstrated interest in American military issues and US defense policy vis-a-vis Iran, and prior research or office experience.  A capacity and enthusiasm for open-source research and reading fluency in Farsi and/or experience in strategic studies are required.

 

Critical Threats Project- Yemen Internship:  The Yemen portfolio includes, but is not limited to, research on al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula and local political and security developments. Interns will be responsible for the production of a daily news brief published on www.criticalthreats.org. The ability to read and conduct research in Arabic is highly desired.

Critical Threats Project- West Africa Internship: The West Africa portfolio includes, but is not limited to, research on security developments in Nigeria, Mali, and Niger related to al Qaeda and associated movements. The ability to read and conduct research in Arabic, French, or a local language is desired but not required.

Critical Threats Project- Pakistan Internship: The Pakistan portfolio includes, but is not limited to, research on security developments in South Asia, the Pakistani military, al Qaeda and associated movements, the Taliban and other terrorist groups inside Pakistan, and relations with the United States. Interns will be responsible for the production of a daily news brief published on www.criticalthreats.org.

Critical Threats Project-Iran Internship: The Iran portfolio includes, but is not limited to, research on the nuclear program, security issues, Iranian domestic politics, and foreign affairs. Interns will be responsible for media monitoring, translation, conducting research, assisting with the completion of published products, and updating trackers on www.irantracker.org. The ability to read and conduct research in Persian is highly desired but not required.

 

Critical Threats Project-Horn of Africa Internship:  The Horn of Africa portfolio includes, but is not limited to, research on al Shabaab and regional political and security developments. Interns will be responsible for the production of a daily news brief published on www.criticalthreats.org. The ability to read and conduct research in Arabic, Somali, or Swahili is desired but not required.

Critical Threats Project – Technology Internship: This position provides valuable, hands-on experience at the intersection of technology, big data, national security, and defense. Interns will assist the technology fellow and Critical Threats team in implementing and using advanced technological platforms across qualitative and quantitative data sets and producing analytical and data-driven products published on www.criticalthreats.org and www.irantracker.org. Duties include, but are not limited to, conducting research, developing new workflows for state-of-the-art technologies and their implementation, and some coding work outside the platforms. Ideal candidates are detail-oriented, creative, technology-savvy and demonstrate strong analytical and communication skills, the ability to work in a fast-paced environment, and a passion for the space. Initiative, work ethic, and dedication to the project’s mission are highly valued. Knowledge of Java, XML, and Python is desired but not required.

 

Heritage Foundation:

The Heritage Foundation Internship Program: attracts young conservative leaders of the highest caliber. We train, equip, and develop tomorrow’s young conservative leaders during their time at Heritage. Our paid interns are given substantive work, acquire policy expertise, and build marketable skills.  Interns work with Heritage experts on foreign and domestic policy issues in such areas as energy and the environment, the rule of law, homeland security, and health care. For those interested in business, Heritage offers the opportunity to work in communications and marketing, development, coalition building and outreach, and government relations.

 

 Department of Homeland Security: Various

Neither Brookings nor Council on Foreign Relations are currently taking any NatSec/FP interns for the summer or fall.

 

Middle East Institute:

 

Research Assistant Internships: The Middle East Institute offers a small number of research assistant internships with MEI Adjunct Scholars. MEI provides a venue for scholars and senior policy analysts of diverse backgrounds and nationalities to work on contemporary issues regarding the region. Our Scholars are frequently sought by the media for their expertise and balanced analysis.

Languages Internship: The Department of Languages and Regional Studies provides language classes in Arabic, Hebrew, Persian, Turkish, Dari, Urdu, and Pashto. The language school enrolls around 200 students every three months. Languages Department interns play a critical role in the execution, promotion, and development of the department. Interns in the Languages Department should have experience working with people, a capacity for multi-tasking, and problem-solving skills. Department interns would also need to be strong in both verbal and written communication.

 

Washington Institute: [Due April 1]

 

Research Internship: Full-time and part-time research internships at The Washington Institute are open to current undergraduates as well as recent graduates with a bachelor’s degree. Interns provide research and administrative support to Institute staff. Internships are unpaid.

 

Wilson Center:

 

The Middle East Program was launched in February 1998 in light of the increased engagement of the United States in the region and to explore the profound changes the states in the region are experiencing. Rather than spotlighting day-to-day issues, the Program concentrates on long-term developments and how such issues impact stability and growth in the region and its relations with the United States. The Middle East Program’s meetings, conferences and reports assess the policy implications of regional developments (political, economic, and social), the Middle East’s role in the international arena, American interests in the region, strategic threats to and from the regional states, and the role and future prospects of the region’s energy resources. [Due April 1]

Internships with the Nuclear Proliferation International History Project: The Nuclear Proliferation International History Project is seeking internship applicants. The individual hired will be engaged in the full range of NPIHP activities, but will focus in particular on digitizing and cataloging archival documents related to nuclear history. [Due March 31]

 

 Truman National Security Project:

 

Richard F. Riley Internship Program: attracts passionate and accomplished young leaders who want the opportunity to contribute substantively to the work of the Truman Project/CNP while building their national security knowledge and professional skills. While unpaid, internships provide dividends through in-depth training and education sessions, essential skill building, and increased policy and political knowledge. Multiple Tracks within the internship (ie. Advocacy, policy, politics etc.)

 

National Defense University:

 

The National Defense University intern program participants are given the unique opportunity to interact with and learn from a community of professionals working together to educate senior military and civilian leaders. This is accomplished through teaching, research, and outreach in the following areas: national security strategy, national military strategy, national resource strategy, joint and multinational operations, information strategies, resource management, acquisition, and regional defense and security studies. Essentially, you can shadow a professor at NDU who shares your interests (ie. Nuclear security, Middle East, etc.)

 

Partnership for a Secure America (PSA)

 

PSA is a nonprofit founded by former US Representative Lee Hamilton and former US Senator Warren Rudman to advance bipartisanship on today’s national security and foreign policy challenges. Leveraging the leadership of its distinguished Advisory Board, PSA has unique credibility and access to forge common ground and fashion thoughtful, fact-based policy that promotes America’s national interests. PSA works on a broad range of key policy issues such as nuclear nonproliferation, climate change, energy security, science diplomacy, the UN-US relationship and more.  Interns will have the opportunity to participate in a close team environment and gain first-hand exposure to and knowledge of the DC political and policy establishments. In addition, interns will leave PSA with practical experience in the day-to-day running of a nonprofit organization.

 

American Security Project:

 

Research Internship Opportunities in the Following Areas: Asymmetric Operations, Energy, Climate Security, Nuclear Proliferation, National Security Strategy, American Competitiveness, Public Diplomacy, Media Relations.  Internships are unpaid, but students may arrange to obtain course credit for their work. Applicants must be at least a junior in college, have strong interest in our research agenda, and be authorized to work in the United States. A competitive applicant must have a keen interest in national security and foreign policy issues. Experience in research, campaign organization and/or new media is highly desired.

 

 

Recent Student Internships in Political Science and International Affairs:

Summer 2012

University of Mary Washington students Brendan Oudekerk, Meghan Hobbs and Sean Simons are among 18 college and university students selected for the summer 2012 College Leaders Program at the Sorensen Institute of Political Leadership. Hobbs and Oudekerk are senior international affairs and political science and economics and political science majors, respectively, and Simons is a junior political science and political communication major.

Fall and Summer 2008

  • U.S. Rep. Andrew Crenshaw
  • U.S. Department of Commerce, Office of Public Affairs
  • Office of immigration and Customs Enforcement
  • Federal Bureau of Investigation

Spring 2008

  • U.S. Sen. James Webb (D-VA)
  • U.S. Rep. Rick Boucher (D-VA)
  • U.S. Department of State
  • Amnesty International, Washington
  • Radio Free Europe, Washington
  • The Israel Project, Washington
  • Virginia Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • Virginia House Speaker Bill Howell (R-Stafford)
  • First Nations Development Institute

Fall 2007

  • Genocide Watch, Washington
  • First Peoples Worldwide, Fredericksburg
  • Sierra Club, Rappahannock Region
  • Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement
  • U.S. Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania) Re-election Campaign
  • Carlos Del Toro for Virginia Delegate Campaign
  • Del. Mark Cole (R-Spotsylvania) Re-Election Campaign
  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington

Summer 2007

  • U.S. Sen. John Kerry (D-MA)
  • Virginia Del. Terrie Suit (R-Virginia Beach)

Spring 2007

  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington
  • Council on Security and Cooperation in Europe
  • Peruvian Mission to the Organization of American States, Washington
  • U.S. Rep. James Moran (D-Virginia)
  • Virginia Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • Fredericksburg Office of the Public Defender
  • Holley & Levine, P.C.
  • Parrish, Houck & Snead, P.L.C.
  • Bibi Bahizi Law Office
  • Jefferson Government Relations

Fall 2006

  • Embassy of France, Washington
  • US Secret Service
  • Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement
  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington
  • Forward Together PAC

Summer 2006

  • Virginia Governor Tim Kaine (D)
  • U.S. Sen. George Allen (R-VA) re-election campaign
  • James Webb (D) for U.S. Senate (Virginia) campaign
  • Harris Miller (D) for U.S. Senate (Virginia) campaign
  • American Jewish Congress
  • WSHB-TV, Hartford, CT
  • General Counsel’s Office, U.S. Department of Energy
  • University Legal Counsel, Virginia Tech
  • Pearl S. Buck International Foundation

Spring 2006

  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington
  • U.S Sen. Patty Murray (D-Washington).
  • US Rep. Thelma Drake (R-Virginia)
  • US Rep. Tom Davis (R-Virginia)
  • Virginia Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • Genocide Watch
  • Adams, Hussey and Associates, public relations

Fall 2005

  • U.S. Rep. Thelma Drake (R-Virginia)
  • Tim Kaine (D) Virginia Gubernatorial Campaign
  • Jerry Kilgore (R) Virginia Gubernatorial Campaign
  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington
  • Rappahannock Legal Services
  • Piedmont Environmental Council
  • EMILY’S List

Summer 2005

  • General Counsel’s Office, U.S. Department of Energy
  • Virginia Governor Mark Warner (D)
  • U.S. House Committee on International Relations
  • Virginia Citizenship Institute
  • U.S. Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA)
  • Heritage Foundation, Washington

Spring 2005

  • U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY)
  • U.S. Rep. Robert Goodlatte (R-Virginia)
  • Virginia Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms

Fall 2004

  • Fredericksburg Area Chapter, Sierra Club

Summer 2004

  • U.S. Treasury
  • U.S. International Trade Commission
  • Virginia Citizenship Institute
  • Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Washington

Spring 2004

  • U.S. State Department
  • International Crisis Group
  • U.S. Rep. Peter King (R-New York)
  • Republican National Committee
  • Virginia Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement
  • National Center for Missing and Exploited Children
  • Association for Diplomatic Studies and Training

Fall 2003

  • U.S. Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Connecticut)
  • Fredericksburg Area Chapter, Sierra Club
  • Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement
  • City Clerk’s Office, Fredericksburg

Summer 2003

  • Jagriti Foundation Internship, Nepal
  • Re-election Campaign, VA Sen. Edd Houck (D-Spotsylvania)
  • Re-election Campaign, VA Sen. Ken Cuccinelli (R-Fairfax)
  • Virginia Delegate David Albo (R-Springfield)
  • Scripps Howard News Service
  • McGuire, Woods Consulting (Richmond)
  • Virginia Citizenship Institute

Other Recent Internships

      • American Federation of Teachers
      • American-Israel Public Affairs Committee
      • American Red Cross
      • Brookings Institution
      • Business/Industry Political Action Committee
      • Central Virginia Housing Coalition
      • CNN, Washington
      • The Commonwealth Group
      • Concord Coalition
      • First Nations Development Institute
      • Fredericksburg City Clerk’s Office
      • Fredericksburg City Department of Planning
      • International Campaign to Ban Landmines
      • Italian Cultural Institute
      • Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies
      • Middle East Institute
      • National Conference of State Legislators
      • National Foreign Affairs Training Center
      • National Association of Manufacturers, Washington, DC
      • NationalJournal.com
      • Organization of American States
      • Paine Webber Inc.
      • Philadelphia Partnership Community Development Corporation
      • Prestige Cablevision of Spotsylvania County
      • Rappahannock Legal Services Inc.
      • Seniors Coalition
      • Sister Cities International
      • Spotsylvania County Administrator
      • Spotsylvania County Commonwealth’s Attorney
      • U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Legislative Affairs
      • U.S. Department of State
      • U.S. Department of Transportation
      • U.S. Senator John Warner (R-VA)
      • U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchinson (R-TX)
      • U.S. Rep. Ric Boucher (D-VA)
      • U.S. Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA)
      • U.S. Rep. Christopher Shays (R-CT)
      • Virginia Department of Corrections
      • Virginia Division of Child Support Enforcement
      • Virginia Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Office
      • White House — Presidential Personnel Office
      • WHFS Radio, Landover, MD
      • WMUR-TV, Manchester, NH
      • WVEC-TV News Department, Channel 13, Norfolk, VA
      • WNVC-TV, Alexandria, VA