Faith Based Internships

Faith Based Internships  

Princeton’s Office of Religious Life offers summer internships for secular and religious students through three discrete programs. Each program approaches religion differently: students can work for a secular agency that partners with religious groups and learn about religion, or students can work with a religious non-profit that is faith driven which provides an opportunity to deepen one’s faith or learn about another.

All internships provide students opportunity to reflect on vocation and the role of institutions, nonprofits and volunteer work. All internships are eight weeks starting in mid-June unless otherwise mentioned.

The Princeton-United Nations Internship Program educates students about the role religion plays in addressing global issues and explore how secular agencies such as the UN can serve as effective partners with religious communities. In addition to learning about this work from the UN perspective, students will learn about grassroots work through volunteering with a religious community one day per week and will engage in weekly seminars with guest speakers from across the city. The longer-term goals of the program include adding young professionals to the Faith-Based efforts at the UN and developing a cohort of religiously literate professionals for the UN sector. The program has been an important stepping stone for Princeton students pursuing a career in public service and international development. ORL will coordinate the students’ internship program but their internships with UN agencies will operate as standard UN internships. In past years, students have been placed at agencies such as UNICEF, UNFPA, and UN WOMEN. Students must find their own funding and housing. This internship program takes place in New York City.


Grassroots Internships in South East Asia consist of four distinct sites: The International Network of Engaged Buddhists (Thailand), GSMI (an interfaith network of local activists located in Myanmar), MAP Foundation (a non-profit that works with forced migration within Thailand, and Battambang University (a Buddhist university in Cambodia). Students begin their internship with a four-day retreat with local Buddhist-based activists to learn about the ideas of local vocationally driven and spiritually inspired grassroots work. Prior knowledge of Thai or Burmese is not required. Funding available through the Office of Religious Life.

Forced Migration Internships place students at organizations to work on refugee resettlement and integration. Placements will be within one of our many partner organizations, including the major agencies and organizations addressing refugee and forced migration issues in the United States, working within the refugee resettlement system or in related research and advocacy. The interns will work integrally within their host organizations but will also conduct research on behalf of their respective offices for the ORL’s developing initiative regarding the role of religion in domestic refugee resettlement and integration. Potential sites include Cornerstone Marriage & Family Intervention, Islamic Relief USA Lutheran Immigration and Refugee Service, New Jersey Office for Refugees, International Rescue Committee, the Police Executive Research Forum. Funding available through the Office of Religious Life.


The Govardhan Eco-Village, Wada, Maharashtra, India

This grassroots internship in an eco-village in India aims to draw from yoga wisdom and spirituality to engage sustainability. The eco-village, which also houses a Hindu monastery and meditation center, integrates ecological activism, social justice initiatives, and Hinduism's bhakti-yoga tradition. Interns will work with teachers and activists who have built effective programs to address the needs around them. Students will be paired with a mentor and will have the opportunity to work on projects aligned with their personal interest and skills. Areas to explore include organic farming and animal care, alternative energy and green building, integrated water conservation, rural empowerment, women’s empowerment and biodiversity and biotechnology. Interns may also travel locally or visit Mumbai as particular projects require. Prior knowledge of Indian languages or yoga practice is not required. Partial funding available through the Office of Religious Life.

For more information, please contact:

Matt Weiner

Associate Dean of Religious Life