As an organization, we believe that the best way to secure a better future for all of us is to empower young Americans with the skills they need to make a difference. There is no better teacher than experience. Interns at CAIR's national headquarters work with leaders on substantive projects that lay the foundation for a fair and more inclusive America. They develop professional skills, gain insight into the societal impact of public service, and have the opportunity to work with different departments so they might holistically understand the daily operations of a non-profit civil rights organization.
CAIR has a wide array of projects and activities to suit your level of expertise and will empower you to make a difference! Opportunities are available throughout the year for all students to apply--full-time or part-time, undergraduate or graduate, all majors, and even high school students. Interns can earn academic credit or community service hours, or simply enrich their experience and insight to advocacy and civil rights efforts.
We offer internships in the following departments: civil rights, government affairs, Islamophobia watch, local outreach, events, and IT.
A complete application must include all of the following:
All interns are subject to the applicable CAIR employee rules. All interns are subject to a criminal background check. All internships are unpaid.
Interns may receive academic credit or community service hours if arrangements are made between CAIR and the intern's school. It is the student's responsibility to research the requirements, work with the supervising director to tailor the internship, and ensure that appropriate forms are completed if they wish to receive academic credits from their respective institutions.
CAIR's internship and externship program is open throughout the year, offering a variety of specialties to cultivate young professionals and activists. Considering high school and college academic calendars, each sessison generally runs between the following months, though this may be adjusted depending on your availability:
Due to the high volume of applicants, it is recommended that you send in your application as soon as possible.
Applicants should be contacted within five (5) business days of sending their complete applications. If an applicant is identified as a viable candidate for the program, an interview is scheduled. Candidates may be asked for additional documents to complement their applications prior to their interview.
Internships are offered throughout the year, and can be arranged to accommodate academic schedules based on the student's availability. Summer interns typically work a full-time schedule -- Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. with a lunch break. Internships are approximately 10 weeks long but can be longer depending on the intern's availability. Part-time interns are expected to come in between 1-3 days a week. Please include your availability in your cover letter.
For law clerkships at CAIR chapters in other parts of the country, please check this listing.
Law clerks handle a wide variety of work. Most of this work falls under two categories: (1) intake and case management of individual clients who have been the victims of religious discrimination and (2) research assistance on pending litigation.
(1) Case management: Law clerks take shifts handling the intake line for civil rights complaints. Interns are responsible for handling individual cases and performing advocacy short of litigation. For example, interns will work with victims of discrimination to draft letters and EEOC complaints.
(2) Research assistance: Law clerks write legal memos on topics connected to CAIR's pending civil rights litigation. For example, topics may include religious discrimination by law enforcement and the terror watchlist statutory regime. Interns will discuss their research with staff attorneys to help develop creative approaches to litigation.
The Islamophobia watch intern will work closely with the Islamophobia watch director on monitoring and developing strategies to defeat Islamophobia and other forms of religious discrimination.
The IT intern will assist the national IT director with providing regular support to staff at the national headquarters in Washington, D.C. This person will be responsible for monitoring and managing help desk activities and providing high-level customer service.
The intern will work closely with the outreach coordinator to facilitate successful operations of the outreach operations.
The government affairs intern will work closely with the government affairs coordinator to fulfill government relations, communications and administrative functions. CAIR's expanding government affairs department coordinates nationwide advocacy work on issues of public policy. Former CAIR interns and staff have gone on to accept jobs with members of Congress and in the White House.
In complying with the letter and spirit of applicable laws and pursuing its own goal of diversity, CAIR is committed to a policy of Equal Employment Opportunity and prohibits discrimination in all its programs and activities on any legally recognized basis including, but not limited to race, age color, religion, sex, marital status, national origin, citizenship, ancestry, physical or mental disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected basis.