Internship FAQ

Q: What kind of time commitment should I expect?

A: We require all interns to commit twelve to fifteen hours per week for at least three months; however, interns available for six months will be given priority. The longer time span enables you to not only take advantage of more Council resources, but also offers you the opportunity to build your resume and develop key skills demanded in most professional positions. Interns are expected to volunteer at four to five Council events during the duration of their internship. Volunteering at events provides an opportunity to see the work of the Council in action, network with community members, and access  diplomats, celebrated authors, political figures, and experts from a wide range of fields. Former interns tell us they wished they had set aside more time to attend events.

Q: What is the time span of an internship?

A: Internships with the Council run on a quarter schedule as most universities in the area use quarters verses semesters, although we do encourage interns to extend their internship for a longer period of time if possible.

The quarter schedule is: Winter: Jan-Mar, Spring: Apr-Jun, Summer: Jul-Sep, Fall, Oct-Dec.

Q: Are internships with the Council paid?

Internships with the World Affairs Council are unpaid, but do offer great opportunities for professional development and mentorship. As an intern, the resources at the Council are also available to you, enabling you to search for job opportunities, work on resumes, or meet with people who can assist you with your employment goals.

Q: Is student status necessary to be considered for an internship?

No, you do not need to be a student to apply for an internship with the Council. Current interns include some undergraduate and graduate students, recent graduates and others simply looking for a career change. Staff are prepared to support interns no matter where they are at in order to achieve specific goals.

Q: How do I apply for an internship?

Click here to see our current internship offerings and apply!

Q: How can I fully utilize my internship?

The World Affairs Council’s goal is to provide interns with the best internship in the Puget Sound. We have high expectations of our interns and our expectation is that interns will seek out the opportunities given to them. We provide ongoing opportunities for interns to develop their professional skills such as offering resume and cover letter workshops, brown bag lunches with former United States Foreign Service Officers and key community members to discuss different career paths. 

Being flexible is essential to get the most out of an internship at the World Affairs Council. This enables you to attend community events and to network with our members.You may also attend meetings with high-level international delegates to utilize your cross-cultural communication skills, understand meeting logistics, and to provide a vital link between international visitors and the work of the World Affairs Council.

Clearly communicating your goals with your supervisor will enable you to fully utilize your internship. If your supervisor knows what you want out of your internship, they can do their best to create opportunities for you to achieve your goals.

Q: How will I be supported during my internship?

A: World Affairs Council staff are invested in every interns’ professional development. An orientation is provided for our interns on their first day in order to associate them with the general mission of the World Affairs Council and the basics of working in the office. Your have both a mid-term and a final evaluation with your supervisor, both of which will include advice on how to improve your skills and to discuss any newly developed goals. During the internship and the evaluation process you will be provided with constructive feedback to foster your professional growth.

Q: When will I hear about the status of my application?

A: Most interviews are scheduled 1-2 weeks after the application deadline. Applicants that are not contacted for an interview by a staff member are updated on our process by the end of these two weeks. 

Q: What skills can I add to my resume after completing an internship with the World Affairs Council?

A: An internship with the World Affairs Council provides an unmatched opportunity to expand your employability and build on your professional skills. General skills are listed below (this may differ from department to department and specific projects during your internship):
• A meticulous attention to detail • Assisting with event coordination and community event planning • Extensive experience with database entry and maintenance • Ability to work with a networked computer system • Grant writing and research capabilities • Experience with a non-profit business model • Experience with WordPress CMS • Ability to multi-task in a fast-paced office environment • Experience with cross-cultural communication

Q: How can I stay connected?

A:  Many interns continue to volunteer their time at upcoming events, accompanying international visitors, attending World Affairs Council receptions, and occasionally joining us at happy hour.