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The Independent Institute
100 Swan Way
Oakland, CA 94621-1428

510-632-1366 Phone
510-568-6040 Fax
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Student Internships at the Independent Institute

Internships are available year-round. Applications are now being accepted for each quarter in the coming year. Our internships are unpaid positions at our headquarters in Oakland, California.

Independent Institute Internship Programs are designed to provide participants with hands-on training and experience in a premiere think tank setting, while encouraging the professional development of future leaders, scholars, and pioneers of tomorrow. Our programs are multi-disciplinary and incorporate group work to foster collaboration with staff across the organization.

Readings and other elements of professional development and education are incorporated into the program to encourage interns to develop their skills and understanding of their work. Interns will also learn how to participate in and conduct on-camera interviews as apart of their training and are encouraged to participate in events and social gatherings hosted by the Independent Institute. All interns are encouraged to write original research or editorial pieces with an chance to be featured in Independent Institute publications.

We make every effort to match prospective interns based on interests and future career goals.

Acquisitions Internships

Interns in the Acquisitions department assist in the review and assessment of scholarly manuscripts to be published as either a policy report or a book. There will be an opportunity to learn how editors and publishers acquire and build a list of new publications and assess relationships between manuscripts and marketplaces. You will gain insight into the workings of the broader landscape of the scholarly book publishing industry. Applicants should have strong analytical skills with a background in journalism, writing, or editing.

  • Assist in the assessment and evaluation of prospective authors and manuscripts

  • Provide critical analysis and commentary for texts under consideration

  • Work with authors to develop manuscripts before publication

  • Learn and understand the role of scholarly publishing in a think tank setting

  • Assist in completion of book translation projects

  • Acquire professional editorial development skills
Donor Relations Internships

Fundraising is crucial to the work of any public-policy institute. Development interns support our efforts to strengthen relationships with existing supporters and use innovative tools such as email and social media marketing to reach new ones. Applicants should be outgoing, show strong persuasive written and oral communication skills, and be able to work as part of a creative team committed to achieving results.

  • Conduct research on prospective major donors and foundations and compile reports

  • Use existing research knowledge to assist in customizing donor inquiries and proposals

  • Explore and test fundraising approaches via social and new media

  • Research best practices and recommend improvements for donor relations and development team

  • Support daily development outreach efforts including donor meetings, mailings, calls

  • Participate in donor or promotional meetings and events
Marketing and Communications Internships

Marketing and Communications interns work on a variety of sales, promotion, publicity, and social media projects in support of our mission to have a transformational impact on the culture. Applicants must be outgoing, organized, and enthusiastic about working with members of the media. Preferred applicants will have journalism, communications, and/or social media experience.

  • Promote Independent Institute publications, events, and websites

  • Investigate best practices and communicate the latest trends for digital publication solutions and social media

  • Research and sustain databases of target audience members and media sources

  • Collect and catalogue media and author communications

  • Field news media requests and assist in scheduling print and radio interviews

  • Create and distribute press materials and book review copies
Publications and Information Technology Internships

Publications interns have a unique opportunity to learn the ins and outs of an in-house print and digital production department. You will work on a variety of projects for our publications, websites, video program, and blogs. Prospective interns should have a strong attention to detail, excellent editorial skills, and some familiarity with the Internet, HTML, audio-visual technology, and/or electronic publishing software such as Adobe Creative Suite (InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, or Premiere).

  • Conduct research into new technologies such as eBooks and audio-visual production

  • Assist in the production of books (including eBooks), policy reports, newsletters, advertisements, and other printed materials

  • Create and design digital art to be used on Independent Institute materials

  • Provide editorial feedback while proofreading Institute materials before publication

  • Prepare and post content to the Institute‚Äôs websites and blogs

  • Produce video and audio projects to be featured on the web and for donors

  • Prepare submissions to ensure adherence to lawful copyright guidelines
Research Intern

Research interns support Institute Fellows in conducting research for commentaries, reports, monographs, and books on key public policy areas such as economics, infrastructure, international relations, and natural resources. Potential interns should be detail-oriented and possess strong research and communications skills. Ideal candidates will have experience conducting independent scholarly research and be familiar with Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

  • Conduct in-depth online and print research in support of supervising Fellow

  • Draft footnotes, bibliographies, and other substantive materials

  • Provide editorial feedback on articles before online and print publication

  • Contribute your perspective to research conducted and published by the Institute
Student Programs Internship

Interns in the Student Programs department assist in organizing, promoting, and coordinating the annual Challenge of Liberty summer seminars. Participants will have the opportunity to aid in the research and development of new online teaching resources, travel to attend networking events, and assist in the creation of material resources for student groups. Applicants should be outgoing, organized, and willing to work as an effective team member.

  • Draft and implement vigorous outreach campaign for program promotion

  • Use social media to design messaging to attract students from a global market

  • Research and develop reading and discussion resources for use by students

  • Communicate with seminar applicants, manage attendees scholarships and profiles

  • Provide on-site support for seminars in California and Colorado

  • Lead discussion groups and participate in panels at seminars

Internships at the Independent Institute are unpaid.

Summer Seminar

Those interning in June and July may also participate in our week-long, in-house Challenge of Liberty Summer Seminar on liberty, economics, and society.

Who is eligible?

Current undergraduate and graduate college students and recent graduates are eligible for the internship program, although exceptions may be made. Both domestic and international applications will be considered, however, overseas applicants must possess authorization to live and work in the United States.

How do I apply?

Please mail or e-mail as an attachment in PDF format:

  • Resume
  • Letter of interest: dates of availability, requested internship position and any specific interests in the work of the Institute
  • A brief writing sample of no more than three pages
  • Three references

Materials should be sent to:
Amy Lee Andres
100 Swan Way
Oakland, CA 94621
510-568-6040 (fax)
alandres (at) independent (dot) org

Materials may also be sent via fax to (510) 568-6040. No phone calls please. All applicants will be informed when their application materials are received, and those whom the Institute wishes to consider will be invited to interview either in person or over the telephone.



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