Volunteer Internships

The Council on Foreign Relations’ Internship Program offers outstanding volunteer opportunities for college students and graduate students focusing on international relations and who are pursuing a career in foreign policy or a related field.

Interning at CFR

The CFR Volunteer Internship Program offers an exceptional opportunity for talented individuals who are considering a career in international relations. Our volunteer interns have the chance to interact with experts, scholars, and young, upcoming leaders in the foreign policy field.

Volunteer interns are recruited year-round on a semester basis in both the New York and Washington, DC, offices. Volunteer internships are generally offered in the Executive Office,, the Studies Program, Publications, Communications, the Meetings Program, the Corporate Program, and Foreign Affairs publishing. Each semester requires a part-time commitment of at least sixteen to twenty-one hours per week. A volunteer intern’s duties generally consist of departmental support, editing and writing, research, and event coordination.

CFR generally considers undergraduate and graduate students with majors in international relations, political science, economics, or a related field for its Volunteer Internship Program. A regional specialization and language skills may also be required for some internships. In addition to meeting the intellectual requirements, applicants should have excellent skills in administration, writing, and research; basic computer skills; and previous office experience.

Franklin Williams Internship

The Franklin Williams Internship at CFR was established for undergraduate students, graduate students, and recent graduates looking to make a career in the field of international relations. Diverse candidates are encouraged to apply. 

Ambassador Franklin H. Williams was the former American Ambassador to Ghana, as well as the former Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Lincoln University, one of the country’s historically black colleges. He was also a director at CFR where he was a strong proponent of expanding diversity within the field of international relations. The Franklin Williams opportunity is awarded to selected volunteer interns as an added professional development experience. Interns develops the knowledge and leadership skills necessary for work in the foreign policy arena, and they can gain experience in program coordination, substantive business writing, and research.

The selected intern will be required to make a part-time commitment of 16 - 21 hours per week and will be paid at an hourly rate. Additional benefits of the Franklin Williams Internship include a trip to the Washington, D.C. or New York office to attend a Council Meeting and meet with CFR staff, as well networking and public speaking professional development sessions.

To be eligible for a Franklin Williams Internship, candidates must submit their resume and cover letter for a Volunteer Internship in the Summer, Spring, or Fall, and include responses to the following essay questions.

Please prepare two short paragraphs (no longer than 250 words) in response to the questions below. Both responses should be thorough while remaining concise. Essays will be reviewed for content, clarity, and style.

1. Discuss the importance of diversity and inclusion in the international relations sphere

2. Share an example of how you have demonstrated your commitment to diversity and inclusion in an educational, professional, or related setting

Available Internships

Available Volunteer Internships in New York for Fall 2017

Volunteer Internship, Communications

CFR’s volunteer internships give selected volunteer interns the opportunity to receive training in the area of foreign policy; as well as skills training in areas such as writing, research, and program planning. The Global Communications and Media Relations department focuses on maximizing the presence of CFR in print, broadcast, and online media outlets and on promoting CFR’s roster of products, which includes on-the-record events, CFR books, Council Special Reports, Task Force reports, working papers, online publications and interactive features, and Foreign Affairs articles. The department also works to ensure that CFR experts are visible in the news media.

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How to Apply

Please submit your application by clicking on the opportunities above and then clicking the “Apply for this job online” icon in the full description.


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