Non-political internships abound in Washington, D.C.

No political science major? No problem! Non-political internships abound in Washington, D.C.

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The halls of Congress prove a powerful draw for many students looking for internships in Washington, D.C. But the nation’s capital offers a wealth of opportunities that don’t involve governing or lobbying – or even require an interest in political science. Nonprofit organizations, startups, museums and media companies provide valuable experiences for students with interests in communications, history, public health and art, just to name a few.


Last semester, we took a look at the five coolest D.C. internships you never knew existed. Now, we’ll share a handful of organizations whose internships provide great matches for non-political junkies.


The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts


Great for students interested in: communications, graphic design, web development, media relations, education and programming, finance, operations and symphony management and production.


Washington has long enjoyed its reputation as the most powerful city in the world – but it’s not always been considered a cultural mecca. The Kennedy Center changed that perception and is considered among the nation’s most prestigious performing arts venues. Home to the National Symphony Orchestra and the Washington National Opera, the Kennedy Center is also a can’t-miss stop for the world’s top touring plays and musicals. Working in various aspects of the organization, from marketing to management to community outreach, interns at the Kennedy Center have a chance to hobnob with top influencers in performing arts. One of our spring 2017 bloggers, Brandi, is writing about her Kennedy Center experience, which focuses on communications, fundraising and nonprofit management. Perks of the job, she says, include free tickets, networking with professionals from a variety of organizations, and meeting celebrities – like internationally famed cellist YoYo Ma.


International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children


Great for students interested in: Law, communications and social media and information technology.


Want to change the world through your internship? Consider the International Centre for Missing and Exploited Children. The Centre strengthens the global community’s ability to protect children from abduction, sexual abuse and exploitation by connecting people, resources and tools to tackle those problems. Internships are available in three primary areas. Legal research interns work on substantive legal and public policy research for a variety of publications, including reports and white papers. Social media interns assist with the Centre’s content and strategy development for platforms including Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter.


Learn more about this internship from Briana, a fall 2016 student blogger who worked at the Centre.


Sierra Club


Great for students interested in: nonprofit administration, management and fundraising.


The Sierra Club, the nation’s largest grassroots environmental organization, engages more than two million members and supporters through active education and promotion of the responsible use of the Earth’s ecosystems. That makes the institution a key destination for our students, many of whom come to Washington with a keen interest in climate change and environmental policy. Our Sierra Club interns gain a broad understanding of the field of environmental protection and the specific role the Club plays in such efforts. But these students also enjoy more specialized experiences in the field of nonprofit management.


Students interested in nonprofit administration can take part in processes like budgeting, logistics, risk management, training, and compliance. Others looking for experience in fundraising can work directly with gift officers or in research, database management, and event planning. Communications-focused interns can collaborate with the Sierra Club’s media team to create news releases and other content to pitch to national reporters, editors, and producers.




Great for students interested in: nonprofits, public health, international development and communications.


Located in Arlington, Va., SeraphimGlobal provides support to vulnerable populations worldwide. The nonprofit’s programs include bringing community development, social services, sanitation, and clean water to rural communities, as well as combating human trafficking. SeraphimGlobal is not only a longtime TWC partner – it’s also hired several alumni to full-time positions.


Interns at SeraphimGlobal wear many hats, and their experiences can vary based on their interests. Previous students have conducted research and compiled briefings for senior staff, written proposals for international development projects, visited congressional offices to learn about the U.S. foreign aid budget, and attended conferences and meetings relevant to SeraphimGlobal’s work – among many other experiences.


Want to learn more about Washington, D.C., internships outside the political sphere? One of our internship site relations representatives would be glad to answer your questions. Send us a note at

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