Summer Internship Programs
AAPD Summer Internship Program
Since 2002, the AAPD Summer Internship Program has developed the next generation of leaders with disabilities and offered host employers access to a talented, diverse workforce. Each summer, AAPD places college students, graduate students, law students, and recent graduates with all types of disabilities in summer internships with Congressional offices, federal agencies, non-profits, and for-profit organizations in the Washington, DC area. Each intern is matched with a mentor who will assist them with their career goals. AAPD provides the interns with a living stipend, transportation to and from Washington, DC, and fully-accessible housing.
At the beginning of the summer, interns participate in a 1-week orientation session to learn about AAPD and the disability rights movement, meet the other interns, and participate in a variety of engaging workshops and events. As part of the AAPD network, interns also receive opportunities to attend events on Capitol Hill, conferences, community events, briefings, and more.
Applications for the 2019 AAPD Summer Internship Program are now closed.
AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program
Thanks to generous support from Microsoft, AAPD is pleased to once again offer a Federal IT Summer Internship Program within our broader 2019 Summer Internship Program for two (2) students. The two IT interns will be a part of the regular Summer Internship Program class and participate in the same activities. These interns will be specifically placed within the information technology (IT) departments of federal agencies.
The Federal IT Summer Interns will be matched with a mentor who will assist them with their career goals and will also be provided with a living stipend, transportation to and from Washington, DC, and fully-accessible housing. The 2019 program will run from the beginning of June to mid-August.
Individuals with any type of disability currently attending a US college or university are invited to apply. The Federal IT Summer Internship Program is only available to current students who are US citizens.
Apply for the 2019 AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program
Applications due by 5pm ET on December 5, 2018
Disability Advocacy Certificate Program
AAPD partners with The George Washington University’s Semester in Washington program to offer an academic component to our existing Summer Internship Program and Federal IT Summer Internship Program. This takes the form of a credit-optional certificate program with two weekly courses. In addition to gaining hands-on experience in high-level internships, students have the opportunity to learn about the functions of government and issues impacting disability advocacy. The course brings in multiple guest speakers with real-world experience to provide their expertise, share their insights, and create an opportunity for conversation with the students.
Application Process for the Summer Internship Programs
The 2019 AAPD Summer Internship Program and AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program will run from early June to mid-August. Candidates for either program must submit the following with their respective online applications:
- Applicant Information (Section 1)
- A resume (Section 2)
- Responses to essay questions (Section 3)
- Two (2) letters of recommendation (Section 4)
We strongly encourage answering the essay questions in a separate word processing program and copying them into the online form so that it can be submitted in one sitting. Incomplete or late submissions will not be considered. We will not consider any materials in excess of the stated requirements. Applicants chosen for the AAPD Summer Internship Program and the AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program release all information contained in their application for use on the AAPD website and in public press releases, including releases to the program funders and potential employers.
If you have any questions or would like to request reasonable accommodations, please contact AAPD at firstname.lastname@example.org or at (202) 521-4316.
AAPD Summer Internship Program
Any undergraduate student, law student, graduate student, or recent graduate from a US college or university who self-identifies as an individual with any type of disability is invited to apply. You will not be required to disclose your specific disability; however, your application for this program will signify that you consider yourself a person with a disability. Individuals that are not US citizens are welcome to participate in this program if they 1) are a current student at or recent graduate of US college or university and 2) have the proper work authorization documents.
AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program
Any current student attending a US college or university who self-identifies as an individual with any type of disability is invited to apply. You will not be required to disclose your specific disability; however, your application for this program will signify that you consider yourself a person with a disability. You must be a US citizen to be eligible for the Federal IT Summer Internship Program.
NOTE: These programs are run specifically for students with disabilities by the American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD), a national cross-disability organization. Those selected for these programs will be involved in various disability-focused activities and associated with AAPD and fellow interns with all types of disabilities.
Program Requirements and Policies
- Interns selected to participate in the AAPD Summer Internship Program will be placed in unpaid internships with Congressional offices, federal agencies, non-profits, or for-profit organizations to work full-time four days a week (~24-32 hours per week).
- Interns selected to participate in the AAPD Federal IT Summer Internship Program will be placed in unpaid internships within the IT departments of federal agencies to work full-time four days a week (~24-32 hours per week).
- Interns must communicate reliably by email and utilize the Google suite of products (Drive, Docs, Sheets, etc.) leading up to and throughout the summer.
- Interns are expected to assist AAPD in securing their placements. This is a collaborative process where each intern may be asked to submit additional application materials and interview with a possible placement.
- An orientation will be held in Washington, DC at the beginning of the program that all interns must attend.
- Interns will receive a Summer Schedule of AAPD-sponsored activities and must attend all mandatory events.
- Interns will receive a living stipend disbursed in three (3) installments over the summer.
- Interns will live in dorm-style housing and will most likely share a room with another intern from the program (interns selected for the program will have an opportunity to request specific housing accommodations).
Past internship placements include:
- Administration for Community Living, Department of Health and Human Services
- American Airlines
- American Bar Association
- American Council of the Blind
- Association of University Centers on Disabilities
- Centene Corporation
- Department of Energy
- Department of Homeland Security
- Equal Employment Opportunity Commission
- Families USA
- Federal Communications Commission
- House Committee on Energy and Commerce
- Information Technology Industry Council
- Institute for Educational Leadership
- JBS International
- National Archives and Records Administration
- National Association of Councils on Developmental Disabilities
- National Center for Learning Disabilities
- National Disability Rights Network
- National Education Association
- Office of Disability Employment Policy
- Representative Barbara Lee (D-CA)
- Representative Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)
- Representative Nancy Pelosi (D-CA)
- Representative F. James Sensenbrenner (R-WI)
- Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI)
- Representative Steny Hoyer (D-MD)
- Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
- Senator Bob Casey (D-PA)
- Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT)
- Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY)
- Senator Kamala Harris (D-CA)
- Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY)
- Senator Patty Murray (D-WA)
- Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL)
- Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA)
- The Arc
- The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights
- United Spinal Association
- US Access Board
- US Agency for International Development
- US Department of Labor
- US Office of Personnel Management
Completed applications must be submitted to AAPD on time. Applications will be collected and reviewed by our Internship Review Team. Finalists will be contacted for video or telephone interviews. Interns will be selected for the program and notified by February 2019.
State Expansion Project
Thanks to multi-year support from the Mitsubishi Electric America Foundation, AAPD is expanding our Summer Internship Program to the state level. In 2019, we are once again partnering with disABILITY LINK, a center for independent living outside of Atlanta, GA. AAPD and disABILITY LINK will run a summer internship program for three Georgian students with disabilities that connects the students to internships within Georgia state government. The interns will also participate in training and networking events organized by disABILITY LINK. AAPD hopes to further replicate this model to reach additional states. Learn more about the disABILITY LINK/AAPD Summer Internship Program. Applications for the 2019 program are due by February 16, 2019.
- 2018 Summer Internship Program Annual Report
- 2017 Summer Internship Program Annual Report
- 2016 Summer Internship Program Annual Report
Support for the 2018 Summer Internship Program is provided by:
Aid Association for the Blind of the District of Columbia