Exposing Students to Nonprofit, Public Sectors

Since 1999, the Cleveland Foundation has conducted a summer internship program that provides undergraduates, graduate students, and recent graduates an opportunity to work for 11 weeks in Cleveland-area nonprofit organizations and governmental agencies.


October/November – Organizations are invited to apply to host a summer intern

December/January – Interns are invited to apply to the program

February/March – Interviews with top candidates are conducted

March – Hiring decisions are made

June/August – 11-week job experience for interns takes place

The program’s objectives include:

  • Offering first-hand knowledge of the Greater Cleveland nonprofit community, its leadership, and organizations.
  • Providing meaningful career-related work experience.
  • Increasing local organizations’ capacity to conduct important short-term projects.
  • Stimulating interest in a career in the nonprofit or public sectors.
  • Exposing students to a broad range of public sector endeavors.

2015 Summer Intern Program

The deadline for applying for the 2015 Summer Internship Program is January 30. Personal interviews with select applicants will be conducted in late February early March. Interns will be notified of their acceptance into the program by the end of March. The internship program begins on June 1 and ends on Aug. 14, 2015. You can read more about each of our intern’s experiences on our Grantmaking Blog.

Meet our 2015 Summer Interns

More Information for Students


Cleveland Foundation Summer Internship Program

Applicants must meet the following qualifications:

  • Preference is given to college juniors or seniors in fall of the current year, first or second year graduate students in fall of the current year or college graduates within one year of June 1st 2015
  • Exhibit interest in the nonprofit or public sectors
  • If not a student of a local college or university, the applicant must be a resident of Greater Cleveland (Cuyahoga, Lake, and Geauga counties)

Other highly desirable qualifications include:

  • A strong academic record (preferably a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or above)
  • Strong English verbal and written communications skills

Helpful hints:

  • Have all documents required for the application (your resume, transcripts, essay and two letters of recommendation) ready to upload
  • Documents must be uploaded before the deadline of January 30, 2015
  • The application submission process (if you have all documents ready) should take about 15 minutes

How to apply (The application will be available on December 1st):

  • Register for access to our online application site by entering your name and e-mail, and creating a login ID.
  • An e-mail will be sent to you within 5 minutes. Please check your spam folder. Click on the link in the e-mail to complete the registration process.
  • Login and complete the internship application and upload your documents.

Required Documents:

  • Resume
  • Most recent transcript of all your college-level study.
  • Two letters of recommendation from individuals familiar with your academic work, employment experience or community/volunteer activities. (We will accept a formal letter or e-mail. If the person wishes to send in their letter or e-mail of recommendation directly, send to TCFInterns@clevefdn.org) or mail to: Summer Intern Program, 1422 Euclid Avenue, Suite 1300, Cleveland, OH 44115.
  • A typed autobiography of no more than two pages. In the essay, please discuss your interest in the nonprofit of public sectors, why you are applying for the summer internship program, and your previous work and volunteer experiences. The essay will help the selection committee learn more about you and also evaluate your writing skills.

Interviews will be conducted during the end of February beginning of March, and hiring decisions will be made by the end of March. 

Please email TCFInterns@clevefdn.org if there are any problems with registration. 

More Information for Organizations

The foundation’s Summer Internship Program provides a limited number of college students or recent graduates an opportunity to work in Cleveland-area nonprofit organizations or governmental agencies during the summer months. All interns are required to work full-time as designated by their host organization. In addition, interns attend a weekly seminar highlighting key organizations and programs being conducted in the local nonprofit and public sectors.

Organizations are invited to apply as host sites during the fall months.


The following roles and responsibilities apply to host organizations:

  • Appoint a senior staff member to serve as the intern’s supervisor.
  • Provide ample supervision, feedback, and support to the intern.
  • Provide meaningful work and learning experiences for the intern. Past interns have worked on projects such as event planning for a major fundraising event, designing an audience demographic survey, developing a marketing/outreach plan and revising training materials.
  • Develop and share a work plan for the intern outlining objectives and deliverables throughout the 11-week term.
  • Provide a workspace and other resources (access to computer, reference materials, telephone) needed for the intern to complete work assignments.
  • Accept the intern as a temporary employee of your organization for the 11-week term of the internship program. The foundation provides funding to cover the intern’s stipend.
  • Attend a mandatory orientation in January 2015 at the Cleveland Foundation for selected Host Sites.
  • Organizations that have hosted an intern within the last two years are not eligible to apply. 

To Apply

Please submit a request in writing no later than November 3, 2014 addressing the following points:

  • Briefly describe your organization in one or two paragraphs.
  • Please describe the project(s) you would plan for an intern to undertake during the eleven-week summer internship program.
  • Please share any additional information that you believe will be helpful to us in making a decision.

Please email your request to Stephen Love or send a hard copy to:

Attn: Ciba Jones
The Cleveland Foundation
1422 Euclid Avenue, Suite 1300
Cleveland, OH 44115

2015 Summer Internship Program Host Sites

Bike Cleveland is the organized voice for cyclists in Greater Cleveland, working to make a more bicycle-friendly and equitable city, county and region through a combination of programming, policy and physical changes to communities.

City of Cleveland Department of Economic Development is the municipal department tasked with creating jobs, driving new investment and helping existing businesses thrive in the City of Cleveland through a variety of programs, grants and loan services.    

Cleveland Foundation the first and oldest community foundation, the Cleveland Foundation enhances the lives of all residents of Greater Cleveland, working together with donors to build community endowment, address needs through proactive and responsive grantmaking and provide thought leadership on key community issues.

Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative is the combined home of the urban design graduate program at Kent State University and the public service activities of the College of Architecture and Environmental Design.  CUDC’s professional staff of designers is committed to improving the quality of urban spaces through technical design assistance, research and advocacy.

Cuyahoga Land Bank is a non-profit, government purposed entity tasked to strategically acquire blighted properties and return them to productive use; reducing blight, increasing property values, supporting community goals and improving the quality of life for Cuyahoga County residents.

Fairview Park is a close-knit and engaged community, encompassing diverse housing options, recreational and park facilities and commercial districts, all within close proximity to downtown Cleveland.

Great Lakes Science Center features hundreds of hands-on exhibits, themed traveling exhibitions, Steamship William G. Mather, OMNIMAX Theater, daily science demonstrations, seasonal camps, family workshops, and is home to the 9thgrade class of the Cleveland Metropolitan School District’s award winning MC2 STEM High School.

OhioGuidestone (Step Stone Academy) offers flexible, customized programs to address every aspect of a person’s needs. Staff is focused on providing direction and inspiration to children, families and communities to help them become stronger.  Stepstone Academy is a charter school located on the OhioGuidestone Campus in Cleveland’s Central Neighborhood.

MOCA Cleveland is Northeast Ohio’s only contemporary art museum and is a national and international leader in mid-sized contemporary art institutions.  MOCA was the first in our region to introduce works of artists who since have become recognized as the vanguard and continues to introduce what’s new in art and ideas today.

Montefiore Foundation is a non-profit provider of comprehensive healthcare services through the aging process, guided and based on Jewish values, and the Weils, a non-profit assisted living senior community. As a provider of healthcare support services for more than 133 years, Montefiore’s mission is to enable individuals to live independently with security, dignity and attainment of the highest possible quality of life.

Northeast Ohio Medical University (NEOMED) is a dynamic institution of higher learning. Established in 1973, NEOMED trains physicians, pharmacists, researchers and other health professionals in an interprofessional environment and strives to be the premier community-based interprofessional health sciences university in the United States.

Rainey Institute has provided arts education programs for children in Cleveland since 1904. Rainey’s programs in music, dance, drama, and visual arts are delivered to children through afterschool programs, Saturday classes and private lessons, performing groups, teen leadership groups and summer camp programs.

Social Venture Partners Cleveland is part of the largest network of donors in the world with more than 3,000 Partners in 38 cities focused on building better philanthropists and strengthening nonprofit capacity. In Cleveland, SVP has donated more than $2.2 million in grants, offers volunteer consulting services, operational impact assessment, and additional donations to 14 local nonprofits since 2001.

Cleveland Transformation Alliance is a nonprofit advocacy organization with the mission of ensuring that all Cleveland children can attend quality schools. The Alliance is dedicated to helping its members and partners grow a portfolio of high performing schools, both district and charter, in Cleveland.

University Settlement Since 1926, University Settlement has provided services to foster strong and independent individuals and families by providing innovative, valued, and collaborative services that meet the evolving needs of the Broadway-Slavic Village Community, offering over 11 different programs to meet the needs of families, children and seniors.

West Creek Conservancy protects local natural areas, open spaces, streams and waterways across Greater Cleveland. West Creek Conservancy focuses on reclaiming vacant urban lands and restoring streams, wetlands, woods and natural habitats as well as establishing trails and greenways to link people and neighborhoods not only to these special places, but to each other as well.