Community Organizing Internship

Grassroots Interns
 Our internship program is on hold while the new co-directors work to redesign it.  Check back or email us for updates!

Below are the 2018 internship details; feel free to read them for an idea about the foundation of the program.


Want to make a difference this summer? Then, apply for the Midwest Academy Organizing Summer Internship!

About the program: The Midwest Academy Organizing Internship is an intense and exciting 10-week organizing internship that places interns with community organizations in Chicago to work on a number of progressive issues and causes. The program is open to community college students, students enrolled in 4- yr colleges, and recent graduates. The internship starts on June 4th and ends August 10th. 

  • Paid Internships: Students will receive a stipend of $4,400 for the ten-week period, to be paid biweekly. Paid internships are limited and usually reserved for juniors and seniors.
  • Unpaid For-Credit Internships:  Students can apply to the program and get credit from their college or university. We will work with you if your institution will give you course credit.
  • College-funded Internships:  If your college or university has funding for summer internships, you may apply to be a Midwest Academy intern, bringing your own funding.  In addition to the internship application form, please let us know what kind of funding you are applying for at your school, how much you might receive, what the decision date is, and when you need a decision about acceptance from us (we will try to accommodate the need for earlier decisions in this program).

More about the Academy and the Internship Program: The summer internship program starts with participants going through the Academy’s 5- Day Organizing for Social Change training. During the training participants learn about and practice building power, developing winning strategies for campaigns, choosing issues, doing one on ones and recruiting leaders, working with media and organizing public meetings to hold public officials accountable.

Following training, interns will be placed with community organizations in Chicago neighborhoods from 95th and State to Brighton Park, Kenwood-Oakland, and Uptown, as well as in several suburban locations and with statewide organizations. Preference will be given to applicants from the Chicago area, or in school in the Chicago area (this may be waived for the for-credit and college-funded internships).

Interns will receive day-to-day supervision from their placement organizations, and ongoing training and mentoring from Midwest Academy staff. Interns will also journal and meet regularly for reflection. For interns who are interested in pursuing a job in community organizing, we will provide job search assistance at the end of the internship or at college graduation. (For-credit interns will receive additional supervision from one of our staff members who have an MA if needed for credit.)

Ideal candidates should meet the following criteria:

  • Have progressive values and be interested in spending the summer working on progressive issues
  • We want interns who are ready to work hard and take on new challenges and responsibilities
  • Must have a have a passion for social justice and be able to demonstrate how you’ve participated in social justice activities & want to learn solid skills in the field of organizing.
  • We are also really interested in people who want to explore a career in progressive organizing.
  • Fluency in Spanish or other languages relevant to recent immigrants will be a plus for some locations.
  • Use of a car will be required in some, but not all, placements.
  • Be a student at a community college, four year institution or recent grad, or grad student headed to a career in social action
  • Interns must live in Chicago. If you are not a current resident of Chicago, you must plan to be here for the summer and have a way to pay for housing. The Academy does not provide housing.

To apply, download our application form, paste it into the body of an email according to the instructions in the form, and send your completed application to You will receive an autoreply telling you that we received it.

Contact for more information.

Download the application form here.