DUSP-PSC Summer Internship Program

what we do

DUSP-PSC Summer Internship Program

Co-sponsored by the MIT Public Service Center and the Department of Urban Studies and Planning

Are you a DUSP student planning for a career in international development or public service closer to home? Are you in the process of lining up a summer internship? Need funding to help support your efforts? Consider applying to the DUSP-PSC Public Service Internship Program.

This year, the MIT Public Service Center and the Department of Urban Studies are once again jointly funding up to six summer internships in international and/or domestic public service. Each intern will receive a stipend of $4,000.

Projects must focus on bringing about positive change for the community served.

Focus Areas:

  1. Developing regions outside the U.S. Applicants can suggest projects tackling any issue faced by underserved communities around the world. However, if you are planning an international project, check the MIT Travel Policy and travel warnings. Note that you may work on an international development project from within the U.S.
  2. Domestic internships may be anywhere in the United States.

Eligibility: You must be a continuing DUSP student who:

  • Will be working on a public service focused project in the U.S. or a developing region.
  • Plans to commit at least 8 to 12 weeks to the project
  • Will be a registered MIT student in the semester following the internship.

Deadlines: Applications are due on or before Friday, April 11, 2014. Candidates may be contacted for an interview to discuss their application as part of the selection process. Successful candidates will be notified by April 22. Applicants must accept offers and submit paperwork by April 28.

Award Requirements: By accepting this grant, you will be committing to several important things:

  • Prior to leaving, we will need to meet with you to confirm your final plans and discuss risk management
  • While you're away, we expect that you will check-in once a week with your internship liaison, sending us a few paragraphs telling us: what you are up to at the moment, what you've accomplished so far, what you plan to do over the next week or two, the main things you've learned so far, your favorite inspiring or funny stories about the internship.
  • Ensure that your community supervisor oversees your work and checks-in regularly with the internship staff (by phone or email) to report on project progress.
  • Sign a contract and a liability waiver.
  • Arrange for all necessary health, safety, and legal needs: e.g. passport and visa if needed, health insurance, vaccinations.
  • At the end of your internship, we will ask you to submit a short paragraph describing your experiences and reflecting on their effects (we suggest you keep a journal to help with this), and a brief report on how the funds were spent.
  • After your internship, you will make a professional presentation to your DUSP peers and others, focusing on the service outcomes and your career development.
  • Acknowledge the MIT Public Service Center and DUSP as sponsors (e.g. website, signage, articles).
  • Participate in our evaluation process.
  • Permit us to publicize your work through our website, print materials, and other publicity.
  • Share photographs with us.

What We Fund: International development and domestic public service projects that have a strong prospect of sustainable benefit for the community and career development potential for the student.

New and continuing projects are welcome.

We support work with community-focused organizations such as non-profits, government offices, international aid agencies, schools, grassroots groups, student-initiated service enterprises and even for-profit businesses if the business is using a social-entrepreneurship model to address the needs of an under-served community.

How to Apply: Submit your application as an e-mail attachment to pscdusp@mit.edu. Preferred file format is Microsoft Word or PDF. Please put DUSP-PSC Summer Internship in the subject line of your email.

You can include additional materials that you think will help, but please be selective.

Cover page (1 page)

  • Name, department, student status (sophomore, etc.), and ID
  • Contact information: e-mail, phone, and mailing address
  • Name of internship organization and primary contact there
  • Brief abstract

Application (2-3 pages)

  1. Briefly describe the organization at which you will be interning.
  2. Provide a brief explanation of your supervisor's position and the work that you will be doing for them.
  3. What community will you serve? Describe the community needs you intend to address.
  4. Describe the internship, and explain the specific ways your work will address the needs you outline. Include useful information like this:
    -What are your objectives?
    -What is the timeline for this work?
    -What are the arrangements: where will the internship take place, etc.?
  5. Explain your evaluation plans: How you will know if you accomplish your objectives?
  6. What are the public service outcomes that you will achieve during your internship?
  7. How will the internship contribute to your career, education and personal goals?
  8. Safety: Outline in ½ page, your safety considerations for the project.
    -What are the main safety issues in the location you will be working in?
    -What steps will you take to prioritize your safety and what resources have you identified to help you stay safe?
    -Does your project have any safety implications for the community you are serving and how will you address these?

Budget (1 page)

To help us understand your financial position relative to your proposal, and to assist you in your planning process, please include a project budget.

Tell us about any other actual or potential sources and amounts of funding. We request notification of additional funding from other sources and we may make appropriate award modifications in consultation with students.

Contact: pscdusp@mit.edu.