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U.S. Foreign Service Internship

A two-summer international affairs experiential-learning program.



Background: Established in 2014, the U.S. Foreign Service Internship Program (USFSIP) is a merit and need-based opportunity that offers two paid summer internships to expose undergraduate students to U.S. diplomacy and the Department of State at large.

Overview: USFSIP consists of participation for two consecutive summers. In the first summer, participants come to Washington, D.C. for three weeks of training including: U.S. diplomatic history, writing skills and professional development. Following the training, interns work for seven weeks on policy desks in regional and functional bureaus at the U.S. Department of State. The second summer is a ten week assignment to a U.S. embassy or consulate overseas. In the intervening year, USFSIP interns must maintain at least a 3.2 GPA and take the Foreign Service Officer Test (FSOT) to gain a better understanding of the Foreign Service assessment process.

Eligibility: Applicants must be U.S. citizens and currently enrolled as degree-seeking undergraduate students in an accredited academic institution at least half time with a cumulative GPA of 3.20 or above. Students must be rising juniors or seniors when they start the program (i.e., in their sophomore or junior year when applying). Students must be able to obtain a Secret security clearance and be available to participate in Summer I program dates between June and August.

Benefits: Students are paid at a GS-4 equivalent rate. The U.S. Department of State provides travel reimbursement and housing assistance for both summers. Students also receive training and mentorship from experienced U.S. Department of State personnel.

Recruiting: We encourage potential applicants to connect with their local Diplomat in Residence (DIR) to discuss their interest in this program. DIRs can be found at:

Selection: Demonstrated financial need/adversity and merit are key factors in the selection process. Other selection criteria are tied to skills sought in Foreign Service candidates: Cultural Adaptability; Information Integration and Analysis; Initiative and Leadership; Judgment; Oral Communication; Written Communication; Planning and Organizing; Working with Others.

How to apply: Students must submit an online application via USAJOBS that includes a statement of interest, statement of financial need/adversity, two short essays, current academic transcripts, and a PDF copy of their FAFSA Student Aid Report, if applicable.

The U.S. Foreign Service Internship Program is not a job program. It consists of two temporary appointments for experiential learning.

USFSIP is NOT a Pathways program for paid students and recent graduate trainees.