The Internship ExperienceJoin us for eleven weeks of career exploration and growth in the Division of Development and Alumni Relations. Our interns work across the University in individual units and colleges Monday through Thursday. On Fridays, they meet for a full day of professional development led by University leaders and experts in the field. Read on to hear about their experiences. Meet our InternsApply Now
|Application Closes||January 2, 2020|
|First Round of Interviews||January 28-30, 2020|
|Second Round of Interviews||Mid February|
|Notification of Final Decisions||Mid March|
|Start of Internship||May 12, 2020|
|Celebration/Program Close||July 24, 2020|
Donors and alumni engaged by interns
Hours of travel with major gifts officers
Million dollars solicited with intern help
From Monday through Thursday, interns work in development offices across campus and contribute to meaningful projects for the division. These projects combine interns’ skills and the division’s needs and can include anything from coordinating a stewardship event to meeting with donors to crafting a gift proposal. Whatever your skillset and interests, you can find opportunities to challenge yourself and grow personally and professionally.
Friday educational sessions
Every Friday, our interns meet as a cohort for eight hours of learning and professional development. The interns spend these days together hearing from development leadership, learning about the fundraising and nonprofit management, taking part in behavioral assesments, and making field trips to Penn State Altoona and Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.
Why should I apply to the DDAR Summer Internship?
This program is one of the best in the country at preparing young professionals for careers in philanthropy. The investment made by our division’s senior leadership, our internship coordinator, our host units, intern coaches, faculty, speakers, donors, and so many more combine to create an incredibly unique opportunity for you and your career development. Unparralleled investment in you comes with great responsibility. Our interns work on meaningful projects for university leadership, provide divisional support, craft donor solicitations, and engage alumni. Come explore a field of philanthropy and give back to our great University.
What is the Division of Development and Alumni Relations at Penn State?
What do your intern alumni do?
Almost 50 percent of our intern alumni currently work in development, with half of them at Penn State (26% of our total graduates). The others work in everything from corporate America to public service. Our interns have gone on to work for companies like Deloitte, KPMG, Google, IBM, GE, and Accenture. Others have been selected for major international fellowship opportunities like Fulbright, and still others have gone on to become communications directors, teachers, and higher education professionals. Some are even pursing advanced degrees in master’s and PhD programs. You don’t have to know exactly what you want to do after the internship. Instead, come find out with Penn State DDAR.
How does the application process work?
The committee reviews all general applications and selects a portion to do a first-round interview. If you are selected to continue after the first interview, you are invited to interview with specific units. You may be selected to interview with multiple units or a single unit. The units then choose their interns.
What are these "units" you keep talking about?
A unit is a term to describe the different groups within the division. These units can be academic colleges (Smeal College of Business, College of the Liberal Arts), University-wide offices (Athletics, the Arboretum), central development offices (Development Communications, Corporate and Foundation Relations), or the Penn State Alumni Association. These are the homes for our interns during their internship.
How competitive is the internship?
Very competitive. Last year we recieved over 100 applications from which we selected a class of 20. The class size is determined by the number of available units, but is generally somewhere between 15 to 20.
When can I intern? Is it limited to rising seniors?
You can intern at any point in your college career, including the summer after you graduate. Preference is given to older applicants, but we have had rising juniors, seniors, and graduates in our internship.