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The Pell Institute Internship is a research experience that offers graduate students the opportunity to develop or refine research skills and cultivate an understanding of the nexus between education research, public policy, and educational practice. The internship can be 4, 8, or 12 weeks and is open to graduate students who are interested in gaining research experience in higher education policy.

Interns should be highly motivated, organized, and able to work well independently. Interns may work closely with researchers at the Pell Institute, and, on occasion, assist Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) staff. Primary responsibilities will include conducting research for literature reviews and collecting and analyzing data for current projects. The internship experiences are crafted around interns' skills and interests. The types of education research and policy analysis the Pell Institute is or has engaged include but are not limited to:

  • Researching and synthesizing “best practices” for (a) supporting students' academic achievement, college persistence, and completion; (b) recruiting and enrolling students in college; and (c) transferring students from two-year to four-year postsecondary institutions.
  • Developing toolkits to support campus-wide retention initiatives and the evaluation of college access and success programs.
  • Identifying and compiling college student funding opportunities in a scholarship directory.
  • Surveying and assessing the use and impact of college access curricula.
  • Providing research and analytical support for COE on federal TRIO programs.

How to Apply

We accept applications throughout the year, but internships are only offered to qualified applicants on an as needed basis. To apply, please fill out this application.

All applications should include a cover letter (not to exceed two pages) describing your interest in the internship, background and experiences, research focus, and future professional goals. Applications are reviewed upon submission. Only complete applications will be reviewed. Questions should be directed to (terry.vaughan@pellinstitute.org).