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The Internship Program

The Vote Smart Internship Program provides a unique lesson in the study of American politics from a nonpartisan angle. Students come to help American citizens educate themselves about elected officials and candidates. By providing this information in an easy and accessible manner, Vote Smart believes that citizens can better defend themselves from the political hype and misrepresentation characteristic of present day political campaigns and partisan media outlets on all sides.

Interns play a crucial role at Vote Smart. The individual talents, ideas and hard work of our interns have been instrumental in the success of many of our most important programs.

Vote Smart researchers collect information on thousands of elected officials and candidates' backgrounds, positions, statements and more. The hard, sometimes repetitive, work done by interns and has a real impact on voters looking to make honest, informed decisions and includes real responsibility. If you are interested in making a genuine contribution to your nation, in an idealistic and positive environment we would love to have you join our team. There is plenty of room to learn and grow with the organization. Many Interns have returned as staff members after they have finished their college careers.

College students and recent graduates typically participate in our Internship Program. We accept applications year-round and have no deadline, but interns are encouraged to submit their applications well in advance of their expected start date because space does fill up quickly every semester and summer.

Job Descriptions

Interns complete the same research as staff members and are given real responsibility.

Covering races in all 50 states and at the federal level, they may be assigned to one of the following programs, or may work on special projects in several programs, as needed.

Interns receive training on our database; answer our Voter's Research Hotline; research special requests made by callers; maintain and update data as needed, and conduct research in the following programs:

  • Election Monitoring and collection of political resources, such as Ballot Measures and Voter Registration information
  • Biographical information and Issue Positions for candidates and elected officials
  • Legislative Research, to include writing and editing state and Congressional Key Vote summaries, as well as entering and checking vote breakdowns for selected votes
  • Evaluations and Ratings by Special Interest Groups
  • Public Statements made by members of Congress

Requirements

Vote Smart's Internship Program provides students with unique practical and educational experiences and has accepted interns from many different fields of study. We seek interns who posses strong research skills and who are genuinely interested in working to accomplish our goal of making factual, unbiased political information easily and freely accessible to all. The overriding qualification for securing an internship position is your willingness to commit 100% to Vote Smart’s goals and mission of informing the American Public without bias.

To qualify for a Vote Smart internship you must meet the following:

  1. Set aside political beliefs and be objective and non-partisan while working.

  2. Be in good standing with your university/school.

  3. Commit to a minimum of 130 hours over the course of a semester (typically 13 weeks).

    1. We are always looking for more help! For questions about full-time internships please email intern@votesmart.org

Applying

Intern applicants must submit the following:

  1. Completed application form.

  2. Resume and cover letter.

  3. Minimum of three academic or professional references. References need only be names and contact information.

Application should be completed online - Internship Application.

For more information about internship opportunities or alternate application submission options please contact the Internship Coordinator.

Internship Frequently Asked Questions

Credit For Internships

Interns may receive course credit from their university for their experience, and are responsible for making such arrangements with their educational institution in advance. Please see our frequently asked questions section for more information on receiving credit for your internship.

Contact Information

If you have any questions or would like to receive additional information, please contact the Internship Coordinator:

Internship Coordinator
1153 24th Street
Des Moines, IA 50311
Email:intern@votesmart.org
Phone: 515-989-6363

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