Communications/Policy Intern – One Opening
Environmental and Energy Study Institute
Next available position: Spring 2022. Application closing date October 10, 2021.
COVID-19 Pandemic Update: For the Spring ’22 semester, we will consider candidates who are planning for their internship to be remote or in-person in Washington, DC. As we get closer to the start of the Spring semester, we will reach out to incoming (in-person) interns to determine any potential initial modifications (going fully remote or limited in-person) which may be necessary due to the pandemic. During the semester, further adjustments may be necessary. All interns must be available during the core EESI work hours of 10 AM – 4 PM Eastern time. EESI is based in Washington, D.C.
Internships require a commitment of 26-30 hours per week during a 14-16 week semester (Spring and Fall) and 10-12 week semester (Summer). A recommended course load for a 30-hour internship is 3-6 credit hours.
EESI’s interns contribute substantively to the advancement of critical environmental and energy policies while gaining insight into the workings of Congress and the federal legislative process, knowledge of significant environmental and energy issues, and an understanding of how a non-profit organization works. EESI’s relationships with other organizations and across sectors provides opportunities for interns to witness how environmental and energy issues develop within the public policy arena. EESI internships offer invaluable career benefits and opportunities and may also be used for undergraduate credit.
As the Communications/Policy Intern, you’ll have the opportunity to write articles, interview experts, curate our social media accounts, create infographics, help research and write white papers, and make videos—all while learning about energy and environmental policy. Some of the topics EESI covers include (but are not limited to!): climate change, energy efficiency, renewable energy, adaptation and resilience, clean energy finance (such as on-bill financing), climate justice/environmental justice, high-performance green buildings, sustainable agriculture and forestry, sustainable transportation, and workforce development.
We offer a friendly, informal, and inclusive work environment dedicated to helping interns succeed in the internship and as you launch careers in the field.
The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) is a non-profit organization founded in 1984 on a bipartisan basis by members of Congress to help educate and inform policymakers, their staff, stakeholders, and the American public about the benefits of a low-emissions economy that prioritizes energy efficiency, renewable energy, and new clean energy technologies. In 1988, EESI declared that addressing climate change is a moral imperative, and that has since guided our work. Our mission is to advance science-based solutions for climate change, energy, and environmental challenges in order to achieve a sustainable, resilient, and equitable world. For more information, please visit eesi.org.
EESI is committed to building a community of staff, board members, advisors, donors, interns, fellows and volunteers, and partners who hold diversity, equity, and inclusion as core values. This commitment strengthens the organization, improves our overall effectiveness, and helps ensure the policies we advance and programs we implement promote an equitable transition to a decarbonized, clean energy economy.
Under the supervision of the communications team, the communications intern will:
- Help handle EESI’s social media outreach, mainly on our Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. This includes creating social media content, infographics, and videos.
- Research and write articles on a broad range of energy, environment, and policy issues for EESI.org and our biweekly newsletter, Climate Change Solutions. This includes interviewing officials and experts.
- Play an integral part in the successful execution of our informative and acclaimed Congressional briefings, which are a key source of information for policymakers. You will also help us create engaging post-briefing content, such as panelist interviews and written briefing highlights. EESI briefings are being held remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Explore creative ways to engage and expand EESI’s network.
- Watch Congressional hearings and other D.C. events remotely and brief staff on them, verbally or in writing. (In-person attendance will resume after the pandemic ends.)
- Limited data entry and other administrative duties.
- Other responsibilities as required, based on the intern’s interests and the organization’s needs. In particular, interns may have the opportunity to help research and draft white papers that will be distributed to the policymaking community, including Hill staffers.
Our internship program is designed for students who are currently pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in communications, journalism, English, political science, environmental studies, or a related field as a current or rising junior or senior.
- Applicants with media, journalism, public relations, social media engagement and/or similar experience are preferred. EESI also offers policy-focused internships.
- Interest in environmental and energy issues, with particular enthusiasm for the communication of pertinent information in a non-partisan manner.
- Strong writing and research skills.
- Attention to detail.
- Self-starter, flexible and able to manage multiple tasks.
- Effective interpersonal communication skills.
- Ability to work in a team or independently as needed
- Ability to represent EESI professionally while conducting interviews by phone or video conference.
- Open to feedback, with strong desire to develop professional skills.
- Experience with Microsoft Office, social media scheduling (e.g., Hootsuite), image editing (e.g., Gimp, Photoshop); graphic layout (e.g., Canva, In-Design); and video editing (Lumen5, Premiere) a plus.
- Internships require a commitment of 26-30 hours per week during a 14- to 16-week semester in the spring and fall, or during a 10- to 12-week semester in the summer. A recommended course load for a 30-hour internship is 3-6 credit hours.
Interns are compensated at the rate of $15.20/hr. You must be legally authorized to work in the United States.
Internship Application Requirements
Please note you will need the following to apply:
- Cover Letter. Your cover letter should be one page in length, and it should highlight relevant interests and experiences along with what you hope to learn and what you can contribute as an EESI intern. Getting to know EESI (by exploring our website) can help you craft your cover letter.
- Resume. Your resume can include unpaid or paid work, academic achievements, or extracurricular activities. You do not need to include everything you have ever done: choose experiences that are most relevant to EESI’s internship.
- Writing sample in a journalistic style (1-2 pages). This is a writing-intensive internship, so we pay particular attention to the writing sample! We are seeking interns with an engaging, reader-friendly voice to help get EESI’s message across.
Strong writing samples are clear, concise, and well-researched. Ideally, they should include data (with links to sources) and quotes from people you’ve interviewed. See our articles and newsletters for examples.
Please avoid submitting an academic paper: we prefer samples written in an accessible style, for the general public. Possible writing samples include a memo, fact sheet, backgrounder, formal blog, article, or a one-page excerpt from a longer piece.
Your writing sample should be written by JUST you! Please avoid submitting a published writing sample. We want to see your writing shine through, not a piece that has been heavily edited by another person.
If you do not have a suitable writing sample, consider writing one for your application or adapting an academic paper you have already written. Your writing sample can be about any topic, but if you draft an article specifically for this internship application, here are some topic ideas:
- what your university is doing to become more sustainable
- what one of your favorite companies is doing to reduce its carbon emissions
- what steps a specific country/state/city has taken to address climate impacts
- an overview of your favorite renewable energy technology
- any other topic that inspires you!
At the top of the document, please provide some background about the origin of the writing sample. For example, was it written as an assignment for a particular course? If so, which course? If an excerpt, please include the title page.
- Feel free to send us examples of your graphic design work, if you have any, but this is not required.
Looking for additional tips on submitting a competitive internship application? Check out this document compiled by our staff.
Applications are open until October 10, 2021, for the Spring ‘22 semester. Our internship program is highly competitive and the summer semester is the most popular. We review each application and will keep you updated during each review stage. Thank you for your interest.
Prior internship experience is not required.
About our application and review process
In an effort to ensure that our internship selection process is fair, we redact all personal information before reviewing applications, including the name of your college or university. Each candidate’s anonymized application profile (cover letter, resume, and writing sample) is reviewed by a member of our staff. During this stage of the review process, it is not possible to attach any correspondence to your anonymized profile. Full profiles, unredacted, are viewable by EESI staff at the interview stage.
We are committed to updating candidates on the status of their applications. Please wait to receive updates.