Internship Opportunities and Global Learning for the Summer of 2014 and Beyond

There is a lot to be learned outside of the classroom! Whether you are thinking about college applications or possible career plans, a summer internship, study, or travel opportunity is worth considering, and with summer just around the corner many high school, undergraduate, and graduate students are doing just that.

To help start the search process for opportunities available this summer and throughout the school year, we’ve compiled a list of some great internships, study abroad, and travel experiences in international affairs across a wide range of organizations. Use the information below as a beginning guide on your search, but be sure to do some research on your own as well! To help you out, we have listed some additional resources for more information.

Attention teachers: we’ve included a section on summer opportunities for educators below. Scroll towards the end of this post for information on two exciting opportunities.

Internship Opportunities             

Amnesty International – Internship Opportunities: Amnesty International is a human rights organization that provides unpaid summer, fall, and spring internships to rising college juniors (and above) in New York, Washington D.C., Atlanta, San Francisco, and Boston.

Arms Control Association Internships: The Arms Control Association and Arms Control Today offer research and journalism internships in Washington, D.C. This internship program, offered in the spring, summer, and fall, is best suited for undergraduate students.

Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Internships: APEC is an international affairs and economic organization that provides unpaid internships to graduate-level students who are nationals or permanent residents of APEC member economies. In some cases a financial stipend may be available. The Secretariat seeks candidates from a variety of academic disciplines, specifically those who have a strong interest in the work of international organizations and, in particular, international affairs and international economics.

The Carter Center Internship Program: Semester-long internships are open to undergraduate and graduate students and recent graduates in areas such as health, peace, and operations. These internships are unpaid and may take place in cities across the nation and abroad. Internship opportunities are offered year round.

Center for Strategic and International Studies – Internships: CSIS offers full and part-time internships in the fall, spring, and summer for undergraduates, advanced students, and recent graduates who are interested in gaining practical experience in public policy.

Central Intelligence Agency – Student Opportunities: The CIA has competitive internship opportunities available to undergraduate and graduate students in a range of fields, including analytical; business, IT, and security; clandestine service; language; and science, engineering and technology. The student opportunities page also includes information on scholarship and co-op programs, as well as ongoing opportunities for students of all ages. Due to the extensive application and background check required, interested applicants should apply 12 months prior to their desired start date. Applications for the Summer 2015 internship program are due March 31, 2014.

Council on Foreign Relations Internships: CFR offers volunteer internship opportunities for college students, graduate students, and recent graduates focusing on international relations and who are pursuing a career in foreign policy or a related field. Interns are recruited year-round on a semester basis to volunteer in both the New York and Washington, DC offices, and all internships are filled on a rolling basis.

Doctors Without Borders – Paid Internship Program: A very competitive program, Doctors Without Borders offers internships in many departments, including HIV/AIDs, Human Resources, Marketing, Medical Editing, Planned Giving, Public Events, Press, and Web. Internships take place in New York City. The deadline to apply for a summer internship is April 11, 2014.

European Union – Washington Delegation Internships: Open to college/university students and recent graduates, internships with the Washington Delegation are unpaid and preference is given to applicants who are available full-time. Internships are offered during the fall semester, spring semester, and summer.

Human Rights Watch Internships: Internships are available to undergraduate and graduate-level students, both within the U.S. and abroad.

International Monetary Fund Internships: The IMF offers approximately 50 paid summer (June – October) internships each year to highly qualified PhD students.

Korea Economic Institute Internships: Applicants to KEI should be graduate students (or exceptional undergraduate students) with a background in political science and/or economics as well as an interest in Asia-Pacific issues, especially Korea. Internships are offered for the fall, spring, and summer.

NATO Internships: The application window for a NATO internship is from March-April for the following year. Internships last 6 months, beginning in either September or March, and are based in Brussels, Belgium. Application requirements include an online application form, CV, and letter of motivation.

United Nations Internships: The UN Programme on Youth provides a list of internships available with the United Nations. Please visit each link for specific details and applicant criteria.

United States Commercial Service Internships: The U.S. Commercial service offers student volunteer internships at U.S. Field Offices, Headquarters, and International Field Offices. This page provides more information about applying to the different locations.

United States Department of State – Student Programs: This page offers information for high school, college, and graduate/post-graduate opportunities within the State Department. Please visit each opportunity for details and applicant criteria.

United States Office of Personnel Management – Student Jobs ( This website is the portal to all job and internship applications for the federal government for students and recent graduates. Internships can be found by searching the site for “internship.” This page also offers information on the Pathways Program, the Presidential Management Fellows Program, summer jobs, and volunteer experiences.

United States Senate or House of Representatives Internships: Many offices of government officials in the House of Representatives and United States Senate offer internships for high school students, undergraduates, and graduate students. A variety of opportunities can be found at the link provided. You are also encouraged to visit the professional website of a representative, senator, or committee for more detailed information.

USAID Internships: The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) offers paid and volunteer-based internships, both domestically and abroad, for college and graduate students.

White House Internships: Applicants for a White House internship must be U.S. citizens who will be at least 18 years old on the first day of the internship, and must be enrolled in an academic program. A completed application for this competitive program includes two essay questions, two letters of recommendation, and a resume.

World Affairs Councils: Like the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh, many World Affairs Councils across the country offer internships at their organization. This link goes to the World Affairs Councils of America list of member Councils.

World Bank Internships: The World Bank offers paid internships in the summer (June-September) and winter (December-March), primarily in Washington, D.C. Applicants are required to be graduate or PhD students who have ideally completed one or more years of graduate-level education at the time of the internship.


Summer Travel and International Learning Opportunities

Amizade Global Service-Learning: This Pittsburgh-based nonprofit organization offers experiences for individuals and groups to travel abroad to participate in service-learning opportunities. There are also accredited study-abroad opportunities, offered in partnership with West Virginia University.

Global Citizen Year: During this year-long total immersion program, offered to recent high school graduates, students will develop critical skills, master new tools, and learn from recognized experts all while living abroad and being fully immersed in a new culture. Programs are offered in Brazil, Ecuador, and Senegal, and last from the summer following high school graduation to the following April.

Global Scholar: An intensive two-week academic enrichment program that offers rising high school juniors and seniors the chance to sharpen their understanding of international affairs in a university setting. Global Scholar Prep is held at American University in Washington, D.C.

Kosciuszko Foundation Summer Study Abroad Programs: A variety of study abroad programs are offered by the Kosciuszko Foundation for study at the Catholic University of Lublin and Jagiellonian University of Cracow in Poland. Programs range in length and include courses in the Polish language, history, and culture with sightseeing trips on weekends. The deadline to apply is May 15, 2014.

National Geographic – Student Expeditions: Students completing 9th through 12th grades are eligible to participate in National Geographic Student Expeditions. There are four types of trips offered: expeditions, field workshops, photo workshops, and community service programs.

Summer at Georgetown: Georgetown University’s Summer Programs for High School Students include a range of activities, such as Institutes on International Relations and National Security/Counter-Intelligence; Fundamentals of Business: Leadership in a Global Economy; and summer courses on a range of international topics. The deadline to apply is April 15, 2014.

Summer Seminar on Global Issues: New in 2014, the Summer Seminar on Global Issues is a two-week, non-residential program offered by the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh in partnership with the Global Studies Center and the University Center for International Studies at the University of Pittsburgh. Open to rising high school juniors and seniors, the Summer Seminar will expose students to a range of interdisciplinary global issues, and will include language study, presentations from regional experts, simulation and scenario activities, among others. The deadline to apply is April 30, 2014.

World Learning: A partner of the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh’s Global Travel Scholarship Program, World Learning offers travel learning opportunities for high school and undergraduate students. The Experiment in International Living offers 3-5 week programs for high school students in 30 different countries, while SIT Study Abroad offers college students more than 70 semester, academic year, and summer programs around the world.


Additional Resources

American Foreign Service Association – Student Resources: The AFSA provides students with information on careers in Foreign Service, internship opportunities in foreign affairs, and other ways to become involved with international relations.

EuroBrussels – Internship Level Jobs: This site lists European Affairs internships/traineeships that are not affiliated with the EU Institutions. Interested applicants will need to contact the organizations or read the requirements to verify whether U.S. citizens are eligible to apply.

European Union Institutions – Traineeships for Students: A listing of internships at the Institutions of the EU in Brussels. There may be a limited number of internship positions available for non-EU students.

Global Job Board: An extensive up-to-date listing of job and internship opportunities, searchable by level, location, and sector. A great resource for internship- and job-seekers alike.

Global Career Blog (Passport Career): Although the main Passport Career site requires registration (and payment) the blog is available to everyone, and is full of advice for job-searching and working abroad.

Summer Opportunities for Educators

10th Annual Great Decisions Teacher Training Institute: Organized by the Foreign Policy Association’s Great Decisions program, the Teacher Training Institute (June 30-July 2) provides educators a unique opportunity to build skills in teaching global affairs, develop international studies curricula, learn about related teaching resources, and interact with other committed international affairs educators. Topics range from defense technology to the Islamic awakening. The Institute is held in New York City. Applications are due by Friday, April 25, 2014.

Summer Institute for Teachers: A three-day (June 24-26, 2014) summer workshop for educators hosted by the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh, which consists of briefings from experts on contemporary world affairs, small group problem solving exercises, and lesson-planning sessions. This year’s topics will focus on a range of issues including transnational threats, genocide, as well as regional studies covering South America.


A Recap of the World Affairs Council of America’s National Conference

clip_image002Former Council Intern, Nina, attended the 2013 World Affairs Councils of America’s National Conference

In November, I had the opportunity to attend the World Affairs Councils of America’s (WACA) 2013 National Conference. Each year the national body hosts this conference in order to discuss the critical national security issues facing the country during the coming year. There were nearly 40 engaging speakers, and even visits to the embassies of Canada, Portugal, and the United Arab Emirates.

WACA offered 25 scholarships for college students from within the national World Affairs Council network to attend the conference. I was lucky enough to receive one of them. In addition to assigning the group a liaison for the week, WACA prepared a few events exclusively for us. These included a “meet and greet” reception where we had a chance to get to know one another, and an evening with Josh Rogin, senior correspondent for The Daily Beast. Rogin shared some of his experiences and fielded our questions about journalism and the current political environment at the White House.  He spoke quite frankly and openly, something that I appreciated greatly.

Each year, the National Conference sparks a conversation on six critical issue areas selected by network leadership to help set the programming agenda for WACA in the coming year. The Six Top Issues for 2014 discussed at this year’s conference included: Cybersecurity, Global Economic Realignment, the Middle East, Global Environmental Issues, K-12 Education, and U.S. Energy Independence.

I was really interested in the topic of Cybersecurity. It was the first to be discussed at the conference, and was introduced with a keynote by the Hon. Michael Chertoff.  He mentioned that the Internet requires active protection, and outlined the four basic types of cyber crime: ordinary criminality, corporate espionage, hacktivism, and physical attacks.  He was most concerned about the latter, noting that we now have a number of physical systems and critical infrastructure that depend on a network, making them incredibly vulnerable to attack.

Following Chertoff’s remarks, a panel of mostly military officers continued the discussion on protecting our national cyber interests. They maintained that because the initiative remains with the attacker, “cyber-active-defense” maintains a top priority. In order to achieve this, they engage in red-teaming, which means sending “good” hackers (called White Hats) to assail their systems in the ways that a malicious attacker would, thus testing the military’s defenses.

This topic interested me because it represents a paradigm shift in the way we as citizens and military think about security, as there are vulnerabilities on both the national and personal level. It’s a complex issue that affects foreign policy and the dialogues between nations, and most likely will require the construction of an international framework or set of guidelines for conduct in cyberspace.

Taking into account all of the exciting things happening at the conference, overall the ability to talk with students from other Councils (many of whom were also interns) about their experiences in a similar situation was my favorite part. Geographically, we came from very different places – including Maine, Florida, Texas, Oregon, and Alaska – but we had the Councils as a bridge.

By: Nina, former World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh Intern, and student at the University of Pittsburgh

General Michael Hayden Discusses the New Face of Espionage

DSC_0553Wesley, a student reporter, with General Michael Hayden

Faisal Shazhad, Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, Khalid al-Mihdhar and Nawaf al-Hazmi: the names of these terrorist actors against the United States roll off the lips of native Pittsburgher General Michael Hayden as easily as the Steelers’ front four.

On November 18, the World Affairs Council of Pittsburgh hosted the former Director of both the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and the National Security Agency (NSA) at a Duquesne Club policy discussion and luncheon entitled The John T. Ryan Memorial Lecture: Security, Privacy, Surveillance… and You, which focused on the delicate balance between the essential homeland function of espionage and its effect on the personal privacy of every American.

Prior to the lecture, Gen. Hayden was gracious enough to answer a few personal questions about his background during a pre-lecture reception. Hayden’s resume paints a portrait of a man born to serve. Commissioned as an Air Force officer straight out of college, Hayden quickly entered the world of intelligence. In 1984, during the Cold War, Hayden served as an air attaché for the US embassy in Bulgaria where he operated as a classic “spy”, collecting information through surveillance and eavesdropping—trained to speak the obscure language by the military, his job was to “observe and report” on Bulgarian citizens. He described this position as the “second best job I’ve ever had” and surpassed only by Director of the CIA.

Rising through the ranks, Hayden was eventually tapped to become the Director of the NSA during the Clinton administration, and later, the Director of the CIA under George W. Bush—the first person to hold both positions. Hayden remains modest. “Life demands, and then you have to respond,” he said, explaining he never pursued either job.

Sometimes, however, the definition of “necessity” changes and intelligence officers are left out in the cold. In his subsequent policy speech, the general explained the intelligence community is now challenged with three major paradigm shifts. “Our threat is changing, our technology is changing, and our political culture is changing,” he said.

Hayden nostalgically described when international conflict was between nation states (specifically, the Soviets and Americans) and involved classic military and intelligence strategies. It was a time when, Hayden said with amusement, “I didn’t lose any sleep over a fanatic living in a cave in the Hindu Kush.” However, recent technological and social advances have caused a sea-change, empowering the public and providing non-state terrorist and criminal groups greater ability to attack because they possess comparable influence to their host government. “Most of the things threatening you are the by-product of state weakness,” Hayden said, listing flashpoint locations in the War on Terror fitting the bill. The common thread, he claimed, is the lack of “effective government.” American difficulties in these regions exist because the entire national security apparatus is designed to take on other states instead of individuals, and has become bent-out-of-shape accommodating these new threats. Fighting enemy combatants face-to-face, he said, as in classical war, has turned into drone strike campaigns in Pakistan well outside the official theater of combat.

Hayden again turned to history, explaining how advances in technology are affecting intelligence practices. During the Cold War, intelligence officers in the NSA commonly intercepted communications between Moscow and Soviet intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) bases scouring for orders to fire on the US. This surveillance, Hayden said, never met a shred of protest from civil libertarians—and neither should today’s. He draws this comparison: “Today’s equivalent is Al-Qaeda email traffic on the same plane as yours and mine.” The only way to monitor the threat is to watch the medium used, just like the NSA did during the Cold War. The difference today, he reasoned, is that some private information is inadvertently gathered in the process. Why should Americans have a problem with the NSA using the same intelligence strategy used against Soviet aggression and threat of nuclear war? The public should be better educated to understand the type of personal data gathered is mostly irrelevant to actual individual privacy.

To the growing number of Americans that disagree and believe activists such as Edward Snowden and Bradley Manning are heroes rather than traitors, the General’s explanation doesn’t suffice. This cultural shift, Hayden says, is the most important emerging paradigm in modern intelligence gathering. Society is demanding an unprecedented level of transparency and accountability from homeland security agencies, prompting Hayden to ask, “Will America be able to conduct espionage, which requires secrecy for success in the future?”

The difficulty is in the nature of the complaint. Hayden frankly proclaimed that today’s surveillance measures are categorically legal and exhibit Madisonian fulfillment: approval by all three branches of government. The problem is one of propriety—whether it is acceptable, even moral, to trade privacy for safety. Can national security bear reforms that essentially require intelligence agencies to ask suspects for permission to spy on them? Hayden submits, “I personally don’t know how you get to that conversation without destroying espionage.”

Hayden concluded by calling the room to action, asking the public to give intelligence a chance. “You’ve got to be involved with this,” he said, referencing political choice. “We’ll live with whatever you decide, but you’ve got to play.” A thinly-veiled football reference? Hayden confirmed during a lengthy question-and-answer session that his visit was timed to coincide with the previous day’s Steelers’ game. “I’ll be back for the play-offs,” he promised.

By Wesley, a student at North Allegheny Senior High School

This is the first in a series of student reporting blog posts. If you are a high school student interested in becoming a student reporter, please contact Emily Markham 412-281-7027, or by emailing

Year in Review: International Affairs in 2011

Happy New Year, everyone! 2012 is off to a snowy start here in Pittsburgh, and this seems like a perfect time to review what has happened over the past 360-some odd days.

As always, the global stage was full of tumult and change: 2011 saw the deaths of influential world figures (Warren Christopher, Muammar Gaddafi, Vaclav Havel, Steve Jobs, Kim Jong-Il, and Osama bin Laden, for example); uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa; the withdrawal of American forces from Iraq; devastating natural disasters (earthquakes in Japan and New Zealand, typhoon in the Philippines, floods in south-east Asia, and famine in the Horn of Africa); and economic crisis in Europe.

We’ve scoured the web to find some of the best of the “2011 in Review” resources, and compiled them below. Are there any we’ve missed? Let us know in the comments.

2011 Year in Review (Reuters): Photos and descriptions of the most important news stories of the year, including a dramatic 60-second multimedia video presentation of the key stories, and some of the top images from 2011.

Best Articles of 2011 (Foreign Policy Magazine): Although not necessarily highlighting the most important news stories of the year, here are the most-read articles from in 2011.

Best International Relations Books of 2011 (Foreign Affairs): In every issue of Foreign Affairs, scholars review recent academic and nonfiction books.  At the end of 2011, the reviewers were asked to select the best ones.  Here you will find the best books in a number of categories, including: Western Europe; the Middle East; the Western Hemisphere; Eastern Europe; Economic, Social, and Environmental Subjects; Asia; Africa; the United States; Military, Scientific, and Technological Subjects; and Political and Legal Subjects.

Personal Favorites from 2011 (A Realist in an Ideological Age): Stephen M. Walt is a professor of international affairs at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government and writes a blog, A Realist in an Ideological Age, for Foreign Policy.  In this post, he shares his favorite blog posts from the past year, all of which are worth a read.

Shots Seen ‘Round the World (Foreign Policy Magazine): Fifty of the best/most important photographs from 2011, as selected by Foreign Policy.

Top 5 Foreign Policy Books in 2011 (Foreign Policy Association): The FPA asked its staff, editors, writers and bloggers to select the best books about foreign policy. Here is what they came up with.

Top 5 International Documentaries of 2011 (Foreign Policy Association): The FPA asked its staff, editors, writers and bloggers to select the best international documentaries on issues related to U.S. foreign policy. Here is what they came up with.

Twitter’s 2011 Year in Review (Twitter): It is no secret that social media is playing an increasing role in current events. Here is a look at some of the key stories, hot topics, and important moments of 2011 — as seen on Twitter.

Your Top 10 Stories of 2011 (The Guardian): Links to the top ten news stories of the year, as selected by readers.

The Year in Foreign Policy (Foreign Policy Association): The FPA looks at several key foreign policy events that promise to shape the coming year, including the 2012 election.

Year in Review (Foreign Policy Blogs Network): The FPA’s blog network has a number of great, topic-specific “Year in Review” posts, all of which can be found here. Read about 2011 in Russia or Israel, or the year in Global Food Security or War Crimes (to name just a few).


The Death of Anwar al-Awlaki

Early this morning, the news broke that Anwar al-Awlaki, a U.S.-born Muslim cleric with ties to al-Qaeda in Yemen, was killed in a drone strike.  Al-Awlaki, believed to be a senior leader of al-Qaeda’s presence in Yemen, was suspected of helping to recruit Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab (the “underwear bomber”), and was tied to the attempt to ship explosives into the U.S. via cargo planes last year.

This new development has many asking about al-Awlaki: who he was, what his death means, and whether the action was even legal.  Here are a few articles and blog posts to help you better understand the situation.


Drone strike kills U.S.-born al Qaeda cleric al-Awlaki, U.S. officials say (CNN): The main news article from today.

The Myth of Anwar al-Awlaki (Foreign Policy): A fairly in-depth article from August, 2011 about Awlaki.

Anwar al-Awlaki: Gone But Not Forgotten (Foreign Policy): An opinion piece looking at Awlaki’s role and the future of al-Qaeda in Yemen after his death.

Anwar al-Awlaki: al Qaeda’s rock star no more (CNN): A different perspective on Yemen and al-Qaeda, post-Awlaki.

Al Qaeda’s Not Dead Yet (Brookings): Another opinion on the future al-Qaeda on the Arabian Peninsula.

Yemeni Cleric’s Killing: Praise and Unease (Council on Foreign Relations): An overview of the issues surrounding Awlaki’s (targeted) killing.

Was Killing American al Qaeda Cleric Anwar al-Awlaki Legal? (Time): A look at some of the legal issues and debate involved with the drone strike that killed al-Awlaki, and implications for future cases.

Was Anwar al-Awlaki still a U.S. Citizen? (Foreign Policy): A brief blog post asserting that al-Awlaki was in fact, still a U.S. citizen when he was killed.

Is Obama’s Use of State Secrets Privilege the New Normal? (The Nation): An article from (almost exactly) one year ago discussing civil liberties, state secrets, and Anwar al-Awlaki.  Food for thought.