State of the Planet

News from the Columbia Climate School

Graduate Student Internship Available With the Women, Peace and Security Program

The Women, Peace and Security (WPS) program at Columbia University is pleased to invite applications for the 2020 Peace and Social Change Internship. This is a virtual, paid graduate internship opportunity that will run from July through September 2020.

Graduate student interns will support grassroots women’s organizations participating in the Peace and Social Change Fellowship Program. This year’s cohort of fellows includes women’s organizations based in Lesotho, Uganda, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan. Interns will work with the WPS program alongside this powerful network of changemakers by offering research, fact finding, literature reviews, data analysis, and more for specific projects designed and determined by the fellowship organizations. Students will work on interdisciplinary teams to co-produce final research outputs for these organizations. Our goal is to facilitate participatory engagement between interns and the fellows to a) support and increase the visibility of the fellows’ work and activism, and b) to create a transnational hub of interdisciplinary work and research, grounded in the needs and desires of the fellows themselves.

The WPS program believes that in times of heightened inequality, hate crimes, and global consciousness of violence against women, and in times of vibrant transnational mobilizations for gender and racial justice, the Peace and Social Change fellowships and internships can generate knowledge, advocacy and new forms of networks to support peace and justice projects launched and led by women.

This internship will be conducted on a remote basis. Interns will be supervised and guided by the WPS program staff through regular Zoom calls, and will be in regular contact with fellows by email and video calls. The 10-week Peace and Social Change Internship is designed to be 10-15 hours per week for up to 150 hours total. Selection for interns will be based on application and interview.


Student must be:

  • Enrolled in a graduate program at any Columbia University or Teachers College department throughout the duration of proposed project (July – September 2020)
  • Visa status eligible to work or receive payment in the U.S.
  • Scholarship/Fellowship status eligible to receive additional funding
  • Available to work on a remote basis for 10-15 hours per week over 10 weeks

This opportunity is especially tailored for graduate students who:

  • Possess background knowledge and/or professional experience related to gender, community organizing, development, peacebuilding, conflict resolution, African studies, public health or public policy
  • Are interested in working side-by-side with grassroots women peacebuilders based in Africa
  • Want direct experience on project-based work
  • Have excellent communications, time management and interpersonal skills
  • Are curious about, interested in and dedicated to the participatory praxis of activism/research

Some of the projects graduate student interns will support include research into education reforms, analyzing best practices regarding sexual and reproductive health rights, supporting advocacy/communications campaigns, and more. Competitive applicants will possess skills or experience in any of the following areas:

  • Interest in and knowledge of African politics and region (especially Lesotho, Uganda, Nigeria, Democratic Republic of Congo and Sudan)
  • Generating literature reviews and annotated bibliographies
  • Fact finding or policy background research
  • Health research, social science research, and/or feminist research
  • Communications strategy, graphic design or data visualization
  • Best practices research and comparative analysis
  • Conducting research for advocacy campaigns and policy briefs
  • Data analysis (quantitative and qualitative)
  • Excellent writing skills and/or experience with journalistic writing or academic prose

Apply via Google Form by June 8, 2020 at 11:59 PM:

For further information, please email

About the Women, Peace and Security Program

The mission of the Women, Peace and Security (WPS) program at Columbia University is to contribute to greater global and regional understanding of the diverse roles women play to successfully influence sustainable peace and promote human security through everyday activism. (WPS team uses the term “woman” to describe any individual that self identifies as a woman, including, but not limited to cisgender and transgender individuals.) Through education, public service and research, the WPS program advances visibility and knowledge exchange among women peacebuilders and practitioners — domestically and internationally — and disseminates lessons learned from their experiences.

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