Internship Opportunities

The American Federation of Teachers, an affiliate of the AFL-CIO, was founded in 1916 and represents nearly 3,000 local affiliates nationwide, 43 state affiliates and 1.6 million members.

Five divisions within the AFT represent the broad spectrum of the AFT's membership: pre-K through 12th-grade teachers; paraprofessionals and other school-related personnel; higher education faculty and professional staff; federal, state and local government employees; and nurses and other healthcare professionals. In addition, the AFT represents approximately 80,000 early childhood educators and nearly 250,000 retiree members.

The issues we address on behalf of all of our members include:

  • education reform and school restructuring
  • privatization of public services
  • worker and workplace health and safety concerns
  • professional development/training programs
  • federal and state legislation
  • health care, Social Security and pensions
  • school and hospital staffing
  • licensure and certification

Responsibilities of Interns:

Interns at the AFT provide research support on worker and professional issues for the different constituencies of the AFT. Interns must be able to work independently on one or two long-term research assignments, as well as assist with short-term projects as the need arises.

The work may involve any or all of the following: producing surveys and compiling results, tracking data, various types of research (Internet, library, Lexus/Nexus), writing for possible publication. The work requires significant communication with AFT leaders and outside sources.  There are also opportunities to represent the AFT at various meetings and conferences around Washington, D.C.

Links to more specific department descriptions can be found in the right-hand navigation.

Application Requirements:

We rely on both academic success and a prospective intern’s interest in learning more about the work of labor unions and the work of the AFT. We have no formal application. Students interested in an internship with the AFT should send the following:

  • Cover letter:
    1. explaining your interest in becoming an intern at the American Federation of Teachers;
    2. what you expect to learn while at the AFT;
    3. what you have to offer the AFT;
    4. why you want to learn more about the labor movement;
    5. the time period for which you are seeking an internship.
  • resume that includes a list of any relevant coursework and contact information (phone and email);
  • writing sample, if one is available (this is not required by all departments).

These items can be mailed to the AFT or sent via email to the contact listed below.

Salary, Scheduling and Application Deadlines:

The internship is a paid position according to the level of education ($13/hr for undergraduates or those with bachelor's degrees and $15/hr above bachelor's degrees).

The AFT does not provide housing or transportation for out-of-town students.

For time periods paralleling school semesters, the application deadlines are:



January through AprilNovember 1 of previous year
May through AugustMarch 1
September through DecemberJune 1

A few internships are also available for up to one year, to begin at any time during the year. Applications for these internships are accepted year round and require the same information listed above.


Intern Coordinator
American Federation of Teachers
555 New Jersey Ave N.W.
Washington, DC 20001

Internships - Department Directory

Select a department for a description of the duties, responsibilities and qualifications of the internship positions.

Other Departments (no descriptions posted)

  • Communications
  • AFT Healthcare
  • Legal

Contact Us Internships

Intern Coordinator