Since 2016, the Digital Media Engagement Team in VA’s office of Public Affairs has worked with more than 100 interns from the Virtual Student Federal Service (VSFS). These interns, located all over the country, have assisted us in many capacities to include writing, editing, graphic design, 508 compliance, research and even video production. Their work can be seen across the majority of our social media and digital channels including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, here on the VAntage Point blog and even on the va.gov homepage.
Thanks to the “virtual” nature of this internship, these college students don’t even need to leave their dorms to gain valuable work experience while also doing their part to support their fellow Americans. Given our satisfaction with the performance of the VSFS interns thus far, our team is not only participating in this internship for the upcoming term, we are also expanding to even more internship projects in areas such as social media, web development and podcasting.
The VSFS is the largest virtual internship program in the world! This year they will offer 1,500 positions with 50+ federal agencies. VSFS offers unique mentoring and exposure to job opportunities within the U.S. government.
Each year, applications are open to U.S. college students during the entire month of July on USAJOBS.gov. Real experience is waiting for students across the federal government, including here at VA and also at NASA, Smithsonian, U.S. Department of State, Forest Service, Indian Health Service, CIA, National Park Service and others. You can see the 2018-19 projects offered at http://vsfs.state.gov/ by clicking on “See All Projects” at the top! To #ApplyinJuly to their top three projects, students must log on to USAJOBS, create an account, build a resume, write a statement of interest, and upload a transcript.
Students play an important role in moving the government forward from analog to digital. There’s something for everyone: graphic design, research, mapping, videography, history, analysis, marketing, community management, writing, calculation, policy planning, app development, and more.
Interns should expect to spend ten hours a week on their project from September through May. This is unpaid, volunteer work, but interns make connections that make a difference, gain valuable experience, and sometimes get course credit. All applicants must be U.S. citizens in student status at a university in the U.S. or abroad. VSFS is open to undergrad through Ph.D., candidates taking classes full or part-time, in-person or on-line.