Africa Program Capacity Building Internship Program
Please review the instructions and download the application form below to apply for the Africa Program Internship Program.
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Africa Program: Stafford Capacity Building Internship Program
Due to COVID-19, this internship will be offered as a remote position until further notice. Interns will need regular computer and internet access during Wilson Center’s working hours.
Please read the instructions below for all deadlines and closing dates.
Wilson Center Description
The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars was established in 1968 by an act of Congress as a living memorial whose work and scholarship commemorate the ideals and concerns of President Woodrow Wilson. To this end, the Center provides a nonpartisan forum where the worlds of policy and scholarship interact through public events as well as timely and relevant research to address key issues and developments, as well as critical current and emerging challenges confronting the United States and the world.
Africa Program Description
Within the broader Wilson Center mission, the Africa Program works to address the most critical issues confronting Africa, enhance knowledge and understanding about Africa, and build stronger, more mutually beneficial U.S.-Africa policy and relations. The Africa Program centers its work on four programmatic pillars:
- Good Governance and Leadership
- Conflict Prevention, Peacebuilding, and Security
- Trade, Investment, and Sustainable Development
- Africa’s Evolving Role in the Global Arena
Underlying these pillars is a cross-cutting focus on the roles of women, youth, and technology.
The goal of the Africa Program Capacity Building Internship Program is to develop and build the professional capacities of the next generation of Africanists.
It does so by bringing in a diverse pool of interns from colleges and universities across the United States to support the mission and work of the Africa Program, while exposing them to careers in international public policy and research, boosting their professional skills, and providing them with mentorship opportunities. While interns must have a demonstrated interest or experience in Africa-related issues and policy, the program prioritizes those who could benefit the most from the opportunity to explore and further develop their Africa-centered studies, interests and their professional skillset.
Interns provide support for the day-to-day operations of the Africa Program, gaining professional experience with administration and logistics, research and writing, and social media and communications. Interns work closely with the Africa Program Director and staff on all aspects of the Africa Program’s work and activities. Each intern is provided with a tailored work plan encompassing administrative and logistical support, research and writing support, and social media and communications support. Work includes providing research on various Africa-related topics, researching speakers, drafting talking points, drafting event summaries, as well as checking in participants to Africa Program events, updating databases, assisting with copy-editing of various publications, and with drafting reports. As part of their professional growth experience, all interns are required to complete an Africa-focused policy-oriented research project and presentation of their own design to which they receive feedback on their analysis, organization, and public speaking skills. Interns also participate in both structured and non-structural mentorship activities, have the option of contributing to the Africa Up Close blog, attend Africa-related events in the Washington, D.C. area, and draft an updated resume section capturing their internship experience for review by the Director. They also complete an evaluation assessing the impact of their internship experience.
This 12-week paid internship is generously funded by Mr. Earl W. Stafford and is funded at 20 hours per week.
Interns will work directly with the Africa Program staff for 20 hours per week andassist with all aspects of the Africa program’s day-to-day operations and programming. Duties will include but are not limited to:
Administrative and Logistical Support:
- Helping Africa Program staff with the preparations for public and private events, including drafting event materials such as event invitations, speaker talking points, event agendas, assembling participant folders and handouts, compiling publications, and preparing tent cards and name tags. Interns will also assist with logistical support for events including event set-up, guest check-in, and note-taking.
- Researching and identifying speakers and other subject matter experts for Africa Program events and activities, and locating, drafting, and compiling speaker bios and contact information.
- Writing event and meeting summaries for the Africa Program website.
- Updating and maintaining the African Program contact database.
- Drafting various Wilson Center quarterly reports.
Research and Writing Support:
- Providing background research and producing memos on a variety of topics and issues related to Africa and to U.S.-Africa relations in support of Program-related presentations, publications, meetings, and media interviews.
- Copy-editing and proofing documents including reports, blogs (for the Africa Program’s blog, Africa Up Close), event and meeting summaries, presentations, etc.
Social Media and Communications Support:
- Drafting posts to promote events and publications on the Africa Program social media accounts on Twitter and Facebook.
- Conducting web and social media analytics using Google Analytics and built-in social media analytics and tracking tools, and tracking the Program’s media coverage.
- Assisting with formatting, configuring, and proofing email campaigns to the Africa Program’s mailing list.
- Assisting with formatting of Africa Program publications using established InDesign templates.
Written Intern Deliverables:
As part of their professional growth experience, each intern will also be required to:
- Prepare a PowerPoint presentation on an Africa-related topic of their choice for delivery to an internal Wilson Center audience.
- Attend at least three Africa-focused events in the Washington area.
- Prepare a one-page evaluation on the impact of their internship experience.
- Produce a resume-ready section capturing their internship experience for review and discussion with the Program Director at the conclusion of their internship.
- Interns also have the option of writing a blog on an Africa-related topic for publication on Africa Up Close.
The Wilson Center comprises 14 programs thus offering many opportunities for professional growth in a number of different areas. Internships also provide opportunities to attend events within the Wilson Center and around Washington. All interns also receive access to the Wilson Center’s substantial research resources.
Successful candidates should have:
- An academic background in Africa and Africa-related issues. Other experience related to Africa would be a plus.
- Strong administrative, organizational, and research skills.
- Excellent writing skills. Copyediting and proofreading experience is a plus.
- Teamwork, attention to detail, initiative, good problem-solving skills, and an enthusiastic and responsible approach to unsupervised work.
- Ability to multi-task and adapt to changing tasks and schedules is desirable.
- Software skills including Adobe Creative Suite (particularly Adobe InDesign and Lightroom), WordPress, Drupal, Google Analytics, Microsoft Outlook, Excel, Word, PowerPoint, and social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter are desirable.
- Media production skills, including photography; photo, video, and audio editing; or graphic or page design are a plus.
- Students who are currently enrolled in B.A. and M.A. programs are eligible to apply. However, preference will be given to students enrolled in B.A. programs.
Availability: Availability—interns must be available to work a total of 20 hours per week. Interns must be available to be in the office* (this internship will be a remote position until further notice) at least three days per week, and this should include at least 4 hours on Tuesday mornings. Preference will be given to interns who are able to work within the Wilson Center operating hours of 9:00am and 5:30pm Eastern Time, Monday through Thursday. Applicants who are unable to work within the Wilson Center’s operational hours will not be considered.
Please Note: International students studying in the U.S. are eligible, but they must hold a valid F-1 or J-1 visa and appropriate work authorization. All international students must obtain written permission from their Designated School Official or Responsible Officer for visas at their university stating that they are in valid immigration status and eligible to do an internship at the Center.
The Center is NOT able to sponsor visas for interns. If you are an international student not already studying in the U.S. on an F-1 or J-1 visa, then you have to go through a university exchange program or an outside organization (internship placement agency) that will sponsor your visa. You MUST have the appropriate visa to apply for this internship.
The Wilson Center is an equal opportunity employer and follows equal opportunity employment guidelines in the selection of its interns.
Spring internships from January/February to May
Summer internships from May/June to August
Fall internships from September to December
Application Deadlines and Procedures:
Applications are due no later than 23:59 Eastern Time on the following days:
Spring internships: November 15
Summer internships: March 18
Fall internships: July 10
Applications should contain a resume, cover letter, and completed application form (available at the top of the page). The cover letter should address three points: what you hope to gain from your internship experience, what you would bring to the Africa Program, and what you hope to achieve during your time at the Africa Program. All materials should be sent by email to email@example.com.
Save your files as pdfs with file names that correspond to your last name and the specific term for which you are applying, using the formula:
YourLastName Spring/Summer/Fall Application Form
For example, a resume for someone with the last name Smith should be titled “Smith Spring Internship Resume.pdf” Applications not sent in this format will NOT be considered.
Please note that the internship application form is a fillable PDF form. Preview, the default PDF application on macOS, has some issues properly saving fillable forms. Please check to make sure your form is viewable on Windows, and if you are unsure, please try using a different application or printing and scanning the document.