Office of the United States Trade Representative


USTR Student Internship Program

"My legal internship at USTR afforded me the opportunity to develop skills and contacts which have been instrumental in pursuing a career in international trade law."

Myles Getlan, Attorney, Office of Chief Counsel for Import Administration U.S. Department of Commerce

"My internship at USTR allowed me to obtain a first hand view of how U.S. trade policy is formulated."

Keun Ho Bae, International Trade Attorney

"My experience at USTR gave me the opportunity to work closely with dynamic public and media affairs experts, while enhancing my knowledge of foreign economic affairs. I was able to develop my organizational skills, learn how to perform multiple tasks under strict deadlines, and work as a team player. Most importantly, I acquired the communication skills and professional background that helped me obtain a job on Capitol Hill after I graduated from college."

Elise Kenderian, Legislative Assistant U.S. House of Representatives

Synopsis of Program

The student intern program at USTR is a volunteer program where undergraduate and graduate students gain knowledge and experience on U.S. trade policy and, in many cases, earn college credit at the same time.  Assignments may include research, analyses, statistics, coordinating briefing books, report preparation, meeting and conference planning, letter writing, covering meetings, hearings, and/or markups.

USTR offers a year-round internship program.  The following are recommended dates by which to submit applications for the corresponding semesters; however, we will accept applications after these dates:

  • Spring internships - November 30
  • Summer internships - March 15th 
  • Fall internships - August 15th

Due to the fact that this is a volunteer program, USTR does not provide stipends. No assistance with housing, transportation, or other arrangements are available. USTR generally receives approximately 300 applications for the summer and approximately 100 for the remaining semesters. Due to the small size of the agency, only 15 to 20 interns are chosen each semester. Those who are not selected are encouraged to re-apply for another semester. 


Applicants must be:

·         US Citizens

·         Eighteen years of age at the time of application

·         Enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program at a college or university (2-4 year institution), or must have graduated in the past two years from undergraduate or graduate school.

Selected applicants will be required to obtain a favorable security determination as a prerequisite to employment.

USTR is a Drug Free Workplace. Recent or current drug use is not acceptable. Selectees will be required to complete a confidential pre-employment security questionnaire that includes questions on alcohol and drug use. USTR reserves the right to disapprove tentative selectees based on information provided in this questionnaire.

Application Process

Students are required to submit a cover letter and resume.  The cover letter must state the dates of availability and the approximate number of hours per week you can work.  Also in your cover letter, briefly state the reason for applying and your expectations from an internship with USTR.  A detailed writing sample may be required at a later date.  Students may wish to include their particular area(s) of interest within USTR (i.e, China Affairs, Americas, Europe & the Middle East).  Each resume must include current address, telephone number, and e-mail address.

Applications will be received by the Intern Coordinator and circulated to interested senior staff for consideration.  If an office expresses interest, applicants will be contacted directly by the office for an interview.


Applications should be addressed to the attention of:

Ms. Taiwo Carmichael
Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
Human Resources - Intern Coordinator
1724 F Street, NW
Washington, DC 20508

For additional information on the program, please contact USTR Human Resources at (202) 395-7360.

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