Type: Internship
Sep 12, 2019 to Oct 31, 2019
Deadline: Oct 31, 2019
Application (87.2 KB)

Africa Program Capacity Building Internship Program

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 and 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 enhance knowledge and understanding of Africa, address the most critical issues confronting Africa, and build stronger, 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.

Internship Description

The Africa Program Capacity Building Internship Program develops the professional capacities and skills of the next generation of Africanists and public policy professionals. It does so by bringing a diverse group of qualified students with an interest in, coursework related to, or experience working on Africa-related issues to support the mission and work of the Africa Program while exposing them to practical experience and professional development opportunities in an environment that mixes public policy and research. 

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 the events within the Wilson Center and around Washington. All interns also receive access to the Wilson Center’s substantial research resources. 

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 and assist 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.

Eligibility Requirements:  Successful candidates should have:

  • A background in Africa and Africa-related issues, and preferably some academic, professional, or experience related to Africa.
  • 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.
  • Currently enrolled in an undergraduate/graduate program or have been accepted to enter an advanced degree program.


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.

Internship Dates:

Spring internships from January/February to May
Summer internships from May/June to August
Fall internships from September/October to December

Application Deadlines and Procedures

Applications are due no later than 11:59PM EST on the following days:

Spring internships: October 31
Summer internships: March 31
Fall internships: September 20

Applications should contain a resume, cover letter, and completed application form. All materials should be sent by email to

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.


Type: Internship
Sep 12, 2019 to Oct 31, 2019
Deadline: Oct 31, 2019
Application (87.2 KB)