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Internships & Fellowships


Office of International Relations (OIR) Internships:


You may know the Smithsonian for our museums and collections, but we’re also a global organization actively involved in researching biodiversity, conserving priceless artifacts, preserving cultural heritage, and much more. We work in more than 100 countries around the world, including Brazil, Morocco, Iraq, Armenia, Kenya, Panama, and Peru, to name but a few. 

OIR serves as the central point for Institution-wide advice, insight, analysis, and coordination of all international activities of the Institution. We advance the Smithsonian’s mission by leveraging the research, creativity, and expertise of the entire Smithsonian to push for greater reach, develop further relevance, and deliver profound impact globally. We mobilize communities, scientists, scholars, and partner organizations to exchange ideas and shape creative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges, always hoping to inspire the next generation of leaders to join us. Underpinning all of our work is a core focus on partnership and building capacity with peers around the world.

OIR offers two distinct internship roles to support our office in its day-to-day functions. OIR internships provide professional development opportunities for individuals interested in public diplomacy, museum education, international relations, curriculum development, science communication, cultural heritage preservation, conservation science, and other relevant disciplines. The intern will serve primarily in an administrative capacity. We welcome candidates with a range of experiences and backgrounds. Internships for summer 2022 will be virtual with the possibility for in-person work pending updated guidance from the Smithsonian; in-person work is not required. OIR internships include a stipend and may be taken for university/academic credit.

The two (distinct) OIR internship roles, with illustrative duties and learning objectives, are as follows:

Global Projects Intern: Provides project management support, conducts research, creates presentations, prepares for meetings, and more. Engages directly with OIR-led programs and develops organizational, interpersonal, and intercultural skills.

Communications Intern: Supports digital communications, including content research and creation, and planning, design, and analysis of social media and blog posts. Plugs into the broader Communications community across arts, culture, science, and education at the Smithsonian and exercises creative thinking.

All interns, regardless of role, are also tasked with general office support and administrative activities. Each intern will have an assigned mentor who will provide guidance and oversight throughout the internship. Interns are asked to come to the role with ideas for what they hope to get out of the experience.


Strong working knowledge of the Microsoft Office Suite, including Excel, Word, and PowerPoint, is essential. Previous experience in an office environment is a plus, but not required. Strong candidates will have international or cross-cultural experiences or interest. An excellent command of the English language, as well as strong interpersonal and communication skills, including writing, is required. Familiarity with a second language, particularly Spanish or French, is desired but not required. Candidates must also be self-motivated, organized, and detail-oriented.

Application Cycle:

Internship opportunities for Fall 2022 will be publicized in mid-summer.

For more information on internships and fellowships at the Smithsonian more broadly, please contact the Office of Academic Appointments and Internships.

The Office of International Relations

Our Staff: The Office of International Relations

The Office of International Relations (OIR) serves as the central point for Institution-wide advice, insight, analysis, and coordination of all international activities of the Institution.