U.S. Department of State Student Internship Program (Unpaid) - 2021 Summer

Montevideo, D.C
Sep 10, 2020
Sep 17, 2020
Full Time


The U.S. Department of State Student Internship is an unpaid experience offering U.S. citizen students a chance to participate in the formulation and implementation of U.S. foreign policy.  Additional information can be found at  https://careers.state.gov/intern/student-internships/ . 

Learn more about this agency


The Department of State tries to provide student interns with opportunities both educationally and professionally substantive in nature. The purpose of the program is to provide students with insight into the work of U.S. foreign policy and the administration of the U.S. Department of State and its diplomatic facilities around the world. Specific duties and responsibilities vary according to the domestic office or overseas post of assignment. Former Department of State Student Interns have written reports on human rights issues, participated in trade negotiations, assisted with U.S. citizens services or visa work, helped Americans in distress abroad, supported and helped to coordinate international conferences and visits of high-level officials, researched economic or environmental issues, monitored and evaluated media reporting, supported educational and cultural exchange activities and identified U.S. experts to speak overseas, and worked on web pages and electronic journals.

Other examples include interns with scientific and technical backgrounds working on issues such as arms control, genetically modified organisms (GMO's), infectious diseases, and remote sensing. Also, students interested in management and administration may use their expertise working on projects involving budgets, human resources, information systems, or general logistical support to posts abroad.

Student interns may be required to do some routine administrative work.

Supervisory status

Promotion Potential


Conditions of Employment

To qualify you must: 
  • Be a United States citizen.
  • Be at least 16 years old.
  • Be in good academic standing with at least a 3.0 GPA or higher.
  • Be pursuing a baccalaureate or graduate degree.
  • Be a college junior, senior, or graduate student with at least 60 credit hours-You are considered a college junior if you will be starting your junior year immediately following the completion of your internship. 
  • Be enrolled in an accredited academic institution on at least a part-time basis at the time of application for the internship. The individual may qualify as a "student" even if the individual has a break in classes, as long as the break is no longer than five months at the time the individual begins the internship.
  • Be a continuing student-This means that you will be returning to or have the intention at the time of application of returning to your course of study the semester/quarter immediately following the completion of your internship - i.e. returning to school in the fall of 2021.  Proof may be requested.
  • Be able to receive and maintain a security clearance or Public Trust certificate.

  • Qualifications

    Please see the below "Requirements" section for a list of qualifications.


    Applicants should be pursuing a baccalaureate or graduate degree, on at least a part-time basis, with at least a 3.0 GPA or higher. College juniors, seniors, or graduate students with at least 60 credit hours by the time the internship begins are encouraged to apply for this opportunity. Note: Applicants are considered a college junior if they will be starting the junior year of college immediately following the completion of the internship.  Applicants must also be a continuing student with the expectation and intention of returning to their course of study the semester/quarter, immediately following the completion of the internship - i.e. returning to school in the fall of 2021.  Proof may be requested.

    Additional information


    The Bureau of Diplomatic Security (DS) advises that routine SECRET level clearances normally require 120 to 150 days to complete. Investigations may take substantially longer if you have a history of extensive overseas travel, education, residence and/or employment; or if you have dual citizenship, foreign contacts, immediate family, relatives, and/or a spouse or partner who is a citizen of a foreign country..

    In addition, if DS identifies a security, suitability, or medical issue, your investigation may require additional time to process and review. These issues could include, but are not limited to, a current or past history of drug or alcohol abuse, indications of a mental or emotional health condition, or indications of financial problems. You should consult the Adjudicative Guidelines for Determining Access to Classified Information ( http://www.state.gov/m/ds/clearances/60321.htm ) to review how these considerations could affect your application. Such issues may not necessarily preclude DS from granting you a security clearance, but they will likely lengthen the time required to complete the clearance process.

    We cannot guarantee that every potential intern will obtain a security clearance before the start of an internship, if at all. Because the timeframe between conditional selection for an internship and entry on duty is relatively short (six to eight months), DS may not be able to adjudicate a non-routine case in time for the student to participate in the scheduled internship. In addition, if an applicant has strong foreign ties to a particular country, approval for an internship in that country may be challenging. Therefore, we encourage students to seek internship assignments in countries where they do not have substantial foreign ties.

    It is the policy of the Federal Government to treat all of its employees with dignity and respect and to provide a workplace that is free from discrimination whether that discrimination is based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity or pregnancy), national origin, disability, political affiliation, marital status, membership in an employee organization, age, sexual orientation, or other non-merit factors.

    REASONABLE ACCOMMODATION - The U.S. Department of State provides reasonable accommodations to applicants with disabilities. If you need a reasonable accommodation for any part of the application and hiring process, please notify the Office of Employee Relations, Disability/Reasonable Accommodations Division, at (202) 261-8163 or reasonableaccommodations@state.gov . The decision on granting reasonable accommodation will be on a case-by-case basis.

    This position is not an appointment. Participants are uncompensated student volunteers in accordance with 5 U.S.C. 3111 and are not considered federal employees for any purpose other than those listed in 5 U.S.C. 3111(c). Any description of "excepted service" within this vacancy announcement is intended solely for categorization on the USAJOBs website and should not be construed as providing any rights or benefits in accordance with that appointment type.

    How You Will Be Evaluated

    You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

    You will be evaluated for this job based on how well you meet the qualifications above.

    Students will be evaluated by the bureaus to which they have applied based upon a completed application denoting the applicant's education, experience, training, and background.

    Bureau offices and posts may make their final decision based upon a phone interview or by simply reviewing application materials.  If during the evaluation period, you are contacted by more than one office in the U.S. or overseas, based upon bureau entries listed in your application, please make note of your final decision by contacting us.

    All interns selected for a position will be officially notified by the Student Internship Program (unpaid) Office by e-mail per the timeline provided via  https://careers.state.gov/intern/student-internships/ .

    To preview questions please click here .

    Background checks and security clearance

    Security clearance

    Drug test required

    Required Documents

    Once you have completed the online questionnaire and Statement of Interest, you will be prompted to attach your transcript to your application for it to be considered complete. Applications submitted before the deadline without the required documents attached will not be considered.

    The required document is your current or most recent school transcript that must be included in your online application via the instructions below. Both official and unofficial transcripts are acceptable. However, if you are selected for an internship, you may be required to provide an official transcript before starting your internship. Should your official transcript indicate that you are not an eligible student, your internship offer will be rescinded.

    Transcripts can be added to the job application by one of two methods:
  • By uploading them (preferred method); or
  • By fax, using the application generated fax coversheet (it will include a barcode and system generated phone number).

  • If attaching your required document by fax, it is extremely important that only the system-generated cover sheets, and the phone number included on them, be used. The cover sheets are coded to insure that your document is automatically attached to your online application. Please ensure that each document is faxed separately with the appropriate cover sheet.

    If a document is faxed successfully, you will receive a system-generated e-mail confirming receipt.

    Please note the following:
    • Documents mailed or faxed directly to the U.S. Department of State, or any Department of State office either before or after the vacancy announcement has closed, will not be accepted.
    • Due to the volume of applications, fax lines can become jammed and documents may not successfully attach to your application on the final days/hours of the application announcement. It is the responsibility of the applicant to verify their required document has been successfully received prior to the closing date of the job announcement. Applicants can do so by going back into their application and verifying that documents have been attached.

    Technical questions about attaching the required document to your application, either via upload or fax using the system-generated coversheet and phone number, should be addressed to the Help Desk at 1-866-656-6830 or mgshelp@monster.com .

    If you are relying on your education to meet qualification requirements:

    Education must be accredited by an accrediting institution recognized by the U.S. Department of Education in order for it to be credited towards qualifications. Therefore, provide only the attendance and/or degrees from schools accredited by accrediting institutions recognized by the U.S. Department of Education .

    Failure to provide all of the required information as stated in this vacancy announcement may result in an ineligible rating or may affect the overall rating.

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