Volunteer Student Internship Program
The Office of the Secretary of Defense/Washington Headquarters Services (OSD/WHS) offers volunteer opportunities to students enrolled in an accredited high school, trade school, college and/or university. These opportunities allow students to explore career options in their field of study and develop personal and professional skills. Volunteer students are exposed to the work environment while learning about the Department of Defense missions and responsibilities. Student volunteer service is enriching and benefits include:
Public law prohibits the Federal government from accepting volunteer service in most situations. No person may provide unpaid service to the Federal government or provide service with the understanding that he or she will waive pay. However, there are specific exceptions when this can be done, and the employment of students to further their educational goals is one example.
To qualify for consideration in this program, you must meet all five criteria:
Once placed in the program, students may continue to volunteer as long as they meet program eligibility requirements. Participants in the Volunteer Student Internship Program must end their internship at the time of graduation or withdrawal from enrollment.
How To Apply
The Volunteer Student Internship Program is year round. Applications for summer internships are due by January 31. There are no specific deadlines for fall or spring internships; however, we recommend you apply at least three (3) months prior to your desired internship dates. In all instances, we will keep your resume on file for six (6) months. If you have not been contacted within that timeframe, we recommend you reapply with your updated cover letter and resume.
To apply for a Volunteer Student Intern appointment within the OSD/WHS or a Defense Agency, all applicants are required to submit:
E-mail the above documents to: email@example.com. If possible, please merge all three documents into ONE (1) file when applying. You should name your file with your last and first name (i.e. Smith, John.pdf).
While email applications are preferred, you may mail all required application documents to:
It should be noted that, under 5 U.S.C 3111, a student volunteer is not a Federal employee for any purposes other than injury compensation and law related to the Tort Claims Act. Student participation in the program is on a voluntary basis, and there is no remuneration or other employee benefits provided by OSD/WHS. OSD/WHS does not provide housing assistance or support. Volunteer service is not credible for leave or any other employee benefits or monetary compensation.
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