Internships with the Middle East Program
The Wilson Center’s Middle East Program serves as a crucial resource for the policymaking community and beyond, providing analyses and research that helps inform U.S. foreign policymaking, stimulates public debate, and expands knowledge about issues in the wider Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
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Interns will be assigned to work directly with the Middle East Program Staff in support of project activities for 20 hours per week.
Selected candidates to the Middle East Program paid internship will gain hands-on experience at one of the world’s most premier think tanks, as well as exposure to leading international public policy experts and practitioners. Interns will also gain insight into the dynamics and operations of policymaking, the private sector, activism, and academia, as the Middle East Program strives to elevate the voices and experiences of diverse communities in the region. The selection committee prioritizes candidates who have a demonstrated interest or experience in Middle East-related issues and policy, and seek to refine their professional capabilities.
Administrative and Logistical (40% of workload):
- Proofread and publish articles, event announcements, and updates on the Middle East Program website;
- Help Program Staff manage and update contact list database;
- Maintain Middle East Program website;
- Assist Program staff in preparing public events, including managing mailing lists, RSVPs, and messaging.
Research and Written (40% of workload):
- Produce an independent research project based on an approved topic of the intern’s choice to be published as an op-ed on the Middle East Program’s Viewpoints series;
- Execute short- and long-term projects for Program staff, including data collection and analysis;
- Analyze, summarize and file research materials;
- Proofread, edit written, and publish written work on the website.
Social Media and Communications (20% of workload):
- Draft emails to the Program’s distribution list with event announcements and published material;
- Prepare visual content in the form of audiograms, promotional videos, and infographics;
- Post publication, event, and Program updates to Twitter and Facebook.
- A demonstrated interest in the Middle East, preferably with some coursework related to, and/or experience working on Middle East issues;
- Excellent qualitative and quantitative research skills;
- Strong writing and editing capabilities;
- Experience with managing social media accounts and/or producing promotional images and videos is preferred but not required;
- Strong communication skills;
- Advanced skills in Arabic, Hebrew, Farsi, Turkish, or Kurdish preferred but not required.
- Applicants must currently be enrolled in an undergraduate degree program, a recent graduate (within the last year), and/or have been accepted to enter an advanced degree program.
International students are eligible, but they must hold a valid F-1 or J-1 visa and obtain appropriate work authorization. All international students must provide written permission from their Designated School Official or Responsible Visa Officer at their university stating that they are in valid immigration status and eligible to do an internship at the Center.
Fall: September - December
Spring: January - April
Summer: May – August
Fall: July 15
Spring: October 31
Summer: March 15
To apply, send your resume, a letter describing how you could contribute to our team and what you are looking to gain from the internship, and a 5-7 page writing sample (can be an excerpt of a longer paper). Please submit all application materials as PDFs only and as a single file. In the subject line please write your last name and for which internship cycle you are applying. For example: "Smith Internship Application Summer 2023." Also, clearly state what dates and times you are available to work, and whether you are based in Washington, D.C.
All materials should be submitted together by the internship deadline via e-mail to: email@example.com. We will contact only those we wish to interview for a position.
The Wilson Center is an equal opportunity employer and follows equal opportunity employment guidelines in the selection of its interns.
This internship was an incredible learning opportunity for me. It allowed me to explore my interests in the Middle East and delve deeper into topics that I was interested in. It also exposed me to interesting people and viewpoints and granted me access I otherwise would never have had.
The Wilson Center offered me the incredible opportunity to delve further into my own interests while discovering new ones. I was able to broaden my understanding of the Middle East by conducting my own research and engaging directly with experts steeped in decades of knowledge on the region.
My favorite part about the MEP program was the invaluable mentorship I received from incredibly kind staff members. They taught me the intricate process of editing, writing, and researching in a collaborative setting, and gave me the chance to delve into almost every aspect of the program. My research, problem-solving, and argumentative skills grew tremendously in just a few months.
Being a summer intern at the Middle East Program has been an enriching experience. It felt incredible to conduct original research and advance the program's mission and goals.
Getting to pursue my own research was an amazing and rewarding experience. Additionally, I was able to broaden my knowledge of areas I was unfamiliar with, like innovation and entrepreneurship in the region.