[EXPIRED] Summer @ Emerson Collective

Emerson Collective, led by Laurene Powell Jobs, is searching for Summer 2019 Interns to work on various teams including Venture Investing, State and Local Partnerships, Immigration and more. Learn more about the roles and how to apply here.

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We are an organization dedicated to removing barriers to opportunity, so people can live to their full potential. Established and led by Laurene Powell Jobs, we center our work on education, immigration reform, the environment, and other social justice initiatives. We use a wide range of tools and strategies—partnering with entrepreneurs and experts, parents and policymakers, advocates and administrators—to develop and execute innovative solutions that will spur change and promote equality.


At EC, we know that we can learn an immense amount from the next generation and that developing talent committed to social progress matters. For those reasons, we are excited to share our 2019 Summer Internship opportunities for undergraduate college students. Placements will be in Palo Alto, California, unless otherwise specified in Location details.

  • Social Innovation
    As a part of the Social Innovation team, this position will focus on grantmaking and research in one or more of the following portfolios: Social Justice (criminal justice, economic justice, etc.), Global (agriculture, health, education outside of the U.S.), and/or Innovation (broad set of work spanning issue areas). These portfolios focus on finding and investing in strong leaders and innovative organizations working to remove barriers for underserved people through direct services, tech-based solutions, policy advocacy, and impact litigation.

  • Education Technology
    Emerson Collective invests in companies using technology to make education more engaging, effective, efficient, and equitable. The Ed Tech Portfolio Services team helps those companies achieve impact at scale by supporting their efforts in go-to-market/revenue generation, impact measurement and research, talent and team development, and data and analytics. We are seeking two interns who will take on projects related to planning and executing portfolio events, developing and updating toolkits and other resources, research on market sectors and competition, compilation and analysis of market and portfolio data, and other projects as needed.

  • Elemental
    Emerson Elemental is committed to (re)designing humanity’s relationship with our natural systems so all people can live in a healthy community with access to clean air, water, and soil. Projects to be completed may include: research, writing, note taking, agenda development, briefing materials & talking points development, deck/presentation development, event logistics, and database management/upkeep on topics important to our practice area including universal access to clean energy and water, domestic energy policy, place based innovation (focus on the Pacific and California), ocean health, community green choice (focus on community solar), and just transitions for indigenous peoples and local communities. An ideal intern has a background and experience in research and information gathering in one or more of our practice areas, strong written and content development skills, interest in drafting materials, and an energy to learn and grow in a fun environment. There will be two Elemental interns – one based in Palo Alto and one based in Washington, D.C.

  • Environment & Food Access
    The Environment & Food Access team curates and manages a portfolio of partners that uplift vulnerable populations to restore the balance between humanity and nature. While we approach all our work with an environmental justice lens, the portfolio covers a wide variety of focus areas including: water as a human right, food for social justice, climate equity, transportation, and place-based innovation. The intern will be responsible for assisting with taking notes at meetings, analyzing data, conducting a landscape analysis, and planning a local site visit.

  • Global Health Equity
    The Global Health Equity intern will help to research and support organizations and teams improving access to and quality of health care delivery for underserved communities in the U.S. and abroad. The intern may also be asked to execute a research project on specific aspects of relevant policies and/or implementation strategies; assist with drafting briefings, memos, or other materials; and help plan and execute trainings and/or convenings. She or he will have the opportunity to learn with and from organizations at the frontlines of care delivery and to engage with the policy, human capital, and academic frameworks that enable global health delivery. Interest, experience, and/or academic work in the social determinants of disease, health equity, and/or medicine preferred.

  • Immigration
    Our DC-based Immigration team works with experts at every level—from advocates and economists to school principals and policymakers—to advance policies that live up to our values and enable aspiring Americans to thrive and contribute. This position may include administrative support duties; preparing reports, presentations, memos, and other documents for internal and external audiences; and researching topics and organizations. There are two opportunities available on this team, and they will both be based in Washington, D.C.

  • Immigration Grantmaking
    The Immigration grantmaking intern will assist the immigration grantmaking team, which funds immigration organizations focused on advocacy, litigation, direct services, and organizing. This work will focus on investigating organizations and conducting diligence for grantmaking. The intern will also take on research projects, which could include analyzing policy trends, data that informs programmatic or geographical impact, and emerging innovations. The intern will also assist with administrative support, including notetaking and data entry. The intern will have the opportunity to interact with a broad range of immigration advocacy and service organizations.

  • Marketing and Communications
    The Marketing and Creative Studio team drives the brand for Emerson Collective and our priority areas, working to change hearts and minds with world-class storytelling and creative. We are comprised of roles across brand management, creative, digital, strategy, production, and content creation, so there is a diverse range of responsibilities. The intern will contribute and learn skills to support cultural research, messaging and creative development, storytelling, and brand building. We are seeking interns who are passionate about social impact, brand marketing, and the creative process, and who are eager to jump in with a ‘no task too small’ mentality.

  • Office of the President 
    Emerson Collective seeks a summer intern in the Office of the President to execute research on cultural events and opportunities, help plan and execute travel (both foreign and domestic), and assist with drafting briefings, memos, and other materials. The intern will work closely with the Manager of Planning and the Executive Assistant to the President and Founder of Emerson Collective. An ideal candidate must have a great interest in Emerson Collective’s policy priorities, experience in research and information gathering, and strong written and verbal communication skills.

  • Organizational Development – Finance
    The finance team is responsible for tracking, analyzing, and forecasting expenses, investments, and grants across the various Emerson Collective work streams. We work to provide efficient and effective services for our colleagues and actionable information to support decisions by our leadership. Interns will assist in assembling, reviewing, researching, analyzing, and presenting expense and investment-related data. Finance also has oversight over the legal, technology, and facilities functions. Additional work related to these areas may also be available.

  • Organizational Development – Legal
    The legal team is responsible for the legal needs of Emerson Collective, including providing transactional and structuring advice and general support with respect to the investment, real estate, operations, compliance, governance, policy, and grant making activities across the various Emerson Collective work streams. We work to provide efficient and effective services for our colleagues and support to our leadership. Interns will gain experience drafting, organizing, reviewing, researching, and analyzing a myriad of processes and documents related to Emerson’s legal needs. Legal works closely with the finance team and additional internship work related to finance may also be available.

  • Public Affairs and Special Projects
    Emerson Collective seeks a summer intern to assist the core team to develop, implement, and execute smart, high-impact integrated and strategic communications and public affairs strategies that extend our influencer, media coverage, coalition development, message, digital presence, and stakeholder relationships at the national, regional, state, and local levels across a variety of our issue areas including the environment, immigration, arts and culture, media, sports, and community development. We seek an intern who is interested in a wide variety of social and cultural issues, ready to dive into work, and creative at approaching problems and finding solutions. The ideal candidate has had previous public affairs internships and experience in creating succinct research reports, building media lists, drafting social media content, and pulling media clips.

  • School Support
    The School Success Team at the XQ Institute is seeking a summer intern to support our role in helping XQ Schools actualize their vision to empower and enable students to become XQ Leaners. The intern will help set up and strengthen systems to enable the School Success Team to successfully partner with the XQ Schools for the 2019-2020 school year. The intern will also play a critical role in the preparation, execution, and follow up of the XQ Annual Symposium, a multi-day gathering of leaders, teachers, students, and staff members from the Schools. The intern will research and organize sessions and activities for the Symposium and help with the on-site execution of the gathering. Following the Symposium, the intern will support the analysis and reflection on the impact of the event. This intern will be based in Oakland, California.

  • State and Local Partnerships
    The State and Local Partnerships team works across EC’s policy priorities. The team collaborates with the XQ Institute to advance the mission of reimagining high schools for all students. The intern will work with teams at both Emerson and XQ, supporting policy and state and local partnership initiatives with an emphasis on education. The intern will engage in research and development of memos, published reports, and web-based material. Additionally, the intern may be asked to attend hearings, briefings, meetings, and/or public events related to priority policy issues. The intern will also play an important role in supporting the state and local partnership team in administrative duties, including assisting on planning and scheduling, helping the team meet deadlines, and organizing events and meetings.

  • Venture Investing
    The Venture Investing team makes venture capital investments in start-ups that align with the overall values of Emerson Collective. The responsibilities of the intern will be to help identify promising companies, complete diligence on potential investments, and support existing portfolio companies. We are seeking individuals who either have technology or finance capabilities.


  • You’re passionate about social impact, particularly fighting poverty, improving schools, making government work well for all, environment, and/or immigrants’ rights.

  • You’re intellectually curious. You love learning new things. You learn quickly and independently. You respond to new ideas, projects, and tasks with enthusiasm and a sense of possibility.

  • You’re creative and resourceful when solving problems or completing tasks.

  • You have exceptional organization skills. You have strong prioritization skills, including time management and project management skills, and always follow through.

  • You have excellent written and oral communication skills, including the ability to develop materials for internal and external audiences. You can learn to communicate complex information clearly and concisely with everyone in the organization and with external stakeholders.

  • You maintain a team-oriented approach and thrive in entrepreneurial, dynamic environments. You’re comfortable taking on new tasks or projects with little direction and adjusting course quickly in response to feedback.

  • You have high standards for accuracy, quality, and integrity.

  • You respond to new ideas, projects, and tasks with enthusiasm and a sense of possibility.


The XQ School Success intern will be based in Oakland, California. Immigration, Elemental, State and Local Partnerships, and Public Affairs and Special Projects interns will be based in Washington, D.C.


The internship lasts eight weeks. The firm start date is June 17th, and the last day is August 9th. There is a possibility for extension for those seeking a longer experience.


EC offers competitive compensation for this role – please inquire for more information. Lunch is provided. 

Commitment to Diversity

Emerson Collective embraces diversity and equal opportunity. We are committed to building a cohort that represents a variety of backgrounds, perspectives, and skills.

Consistent with federal, state, and local law, we are committed to equal employment opportunity regardless of race, color, ancestry, religion, sex, national origin, sexual orientation, age, citizenship, marital status, disability, Veteran status, or other protected category.

How to Apply

Undergraduate college students and others on a learning journey are invited to send a resume and a short (<250 words) note about your interest in the role to recruiting@emersoncollective.com. You are welcome to apply for up to two positions – please submit two separate emails and be sure to denote your preference in your note. In your application email, please use “EC Internship Application” as the beginning of your subject line. Then, please list the team to which you are applying. For example: “EC Internship Application – Marketing and Communications.” For Elemental internship applicants, please be sure to list your desired location.

In order to keep the process fair for all applicants, we are unable to have informational conversations or meetings in advance of reviewing applications. Applications are considered on a rolling basis until January 1, 2019. Final decisions will be made by February 1, 2019. Due to the volume of applications we receive, we will not be able to answer inquiries about application status in advance of this date.

Haley Smith