Partnership for Public Service

Partnership for Public Service

LOCATION: Washington, D.C.

INDUSTRY: Think Tank / Research / Policy

ABOUT US: Recognized as one of the Best NonProfit Organizations to Work For by The NonProfit Times and as a Top Place to Work by the Washington Post, The Partnership for Public Service is a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works to revitalize our federal government by inspiring a new generation to serve and by transforming the way government works. We lead proactive efforts to make the federal government more effective. We convene stakeholders from across the public and private sectors to solve critical management challenges, and we work with federal agencies, Congress and the administration to deliver results.

Since our founding in 2001, we have worked to make government more effective and efficient. Our nonpartisan stance allows us to collaborate with many different stakeholders who share our vision for a better government. We serve as a bridge between administrations, across the political aisle and from government to the private sector, bringing together diverse perspectives to develop forward-thinking solutions and put them into action.

But improving government requires more than just ideas—we need a talented corps of knowledgeable, action-oriented problem-solvers capable of driving results and innovation. That’s why we work with leaders throughout government to help them transform the government we have into the government we need.

RESPONSIBILITIES & PROJECTS: Government Leadership and Management Programs team interns at the Partnership for Public Service have the unique opportunity to develop leadership and management skills by helping our team deliver a variety of programs for federal employees. Our programs aim to develop strong leaders, engage employees, enhance management, encourage innovation and address workforce challenges, such as recruiting and hiring talent. Our audience includes agencies as varied as the Executive Office of the President, NASA and the Intelligence Community.

Interns’ work portfolios will align with our programmatic areas of federal workforce programs, government effectiveness, leadership development and federal executive networks. Interns’ specific responsibilities will include a combination of program administration, training and event planning and logistics, presentation development, data and information synthesis and analysis, note taking, and background research. Interns will support a variety of programs and projects and work closely with multiple people across the organization.

During their internship, interns will learn more about project management, nonprofit management, data collection and analysis, relationship management, event planning and logistics, and customer service. At the end of their term, interns will come away with a greater understanding of how the federal government and its agencies work.

SPECIALIZED SKILLS: The ideal candidate will have strong time management and communication skills, attention to detail, adaptability, commitment to exceptional customer service, and a willingness to learn professional skills indispensable in any workplace.


We have operated remotely since March 2020. We use Zoom and Teams to run our programs virtually, and with Office 365, we've been able to have access to files and software seamlessly. We do have flexibility in our work schedules, though we try to keep to our core hours as much as possible, and we've made adjustments for those in different time zones, including changing meeting times to accommodate schedules. We've made other changes as we've gone along, including adding breakouts during weekly all-staff meetings to allow for people to catch up in ways we used to in the office. We've also incorporated team and org-wide activities to help people stay connected such as virtual BINGO and trivia teams. Our intern program has continued in full, including professional development sessions and on-going cohort meetings.


WORKING HOURS: There is flexibility regarding which hours the intern works.

EQUIPMENT & SOFTWARE: Access to high-speed Wi-Fi, Personal laptop, Web Camera

2020 Intern Reflection:

Working for the Partnership has been a really interesting experience. As an intern, I have been responsible for helping to organize and have had the opportunity to listen in on calls with executives from over 90 federal agencies. It has been fascinating to hear them share how their agencies have been handling current challenges and preparing for the future. I have also gotten to help prepare marketing and invoicing materials, and to prepare presentations. I get to work on a lot of projects and have been exposed to a lot of the ways that the Partnership is helping to make the federal government more effective. The Partnership is very team-oriented and it has been great to get to know my co-workers and they have all been wonderful about showing me the ropes and helping me get the best experience possible even though we are online.

- Aidan Keenan '22

2019 Intern Reflection:

Working at the Partnership has been a truly exciting experience. In an office of over a hundred people, I have the opportunity to work on everything from their new leadership model to doing research on innovative federal initiatives. The Partnership is a relatively fast-paced environment and my coworkers are receptive to collaborating on projects with anyone who is interested in the work.

The Partnership is a really unique place to be because it provides insight into a wide range of federal agencies and ongoing projects to make the government more effective. I am really thankful for my experience with the Partnership for the professional development opportunities it has provided and the interesting work that I have access to.

-Jillian Sharples '21

2018 Intern Reflection:

It’s tough to describe the work I do at the non-partisan, non-profit Partnership for Public Service. Our mission is simple: make government more effective for the American people. The work that we do to help achieve that, however, is anything but. From conducting leadership training for federal managers, to helping agencies recruit more talent, to advocating for legislation in Congress, the Partnership takes on the challenge of civil service reform in unique and innovative ways. On our Federal Workforce team, I help achieve our mission by connecting agencies with mission-critical talent at colleges and universities across the country, mainly by launching a private-public program aiming to address the cybersecurity talent gap in the federal government. Though my initial intern portfolio was limited, the sheer breadth of the Partnership’s work has allowed me to find engaging projects across the organization. Each day brings interesting and varied work — in the same afternoon, I might update a career guide read by tens of thousands of job-searchers online in a year, analyze independent reports on STEM hiring at a federal agency, and revise budget drafts for our fall recruiting events for my supervisor all before I go home for the day.

There’s a strong belief here that good government starts with good people, and I think that attitude is what makes the Partnership special. Office culture is very strong: open communication, work-life balance, professional development opportunities, and friendly coworkers are in no short supply! The people that I’ve met here are passionate about public service, have unique backgrounds, and deeply believe in the importance of the civil service. They’re also passionate about helping interns: I’ve gotten involved in projects outside my portfolio I was interested in just by asking the leads. People are more than happy to take time to help you work on your goals, both at work and in career planning in general. Overall, I’m glad to be at the Partnership this summer. I feel like I’m treated as an equal more than an intern. For those who want a change of pace from the rest of DC, I would highly recommend it!

-Mikael Tessema '20

Washington, D.C.