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Summer Intern

Policy and Thought Leadership

About Bellwether Education Partners

Bellwether Education Partners is a national nonprofit focused on dramatically changing education and life outcomes for underserved children. We do this by helping education organizations accelerate their impact and by working to improve policy and practice.

Bellwether envisions a world in which race, ethnicity, and income no longer predict opportunities for students, and the American education system affords all individuals the ability to determine their own path and lead a productive and fulfilling life.

Our work focuses on five core areas:

  1. Policy analysis and research
  2. Strategy and growth planning
  3. Organizational effectiveness and efficiency
  4. Implementation support
  5. Educational program evaluation

We believe that the only way to ensure all children have access to a high-quality education is to take a holistic approach by changing field-level policies and perceptions while strengthening and supporting individual organizations. Since many of the challenges organizations face are complex, they require multiple perspectives and areas of expertise.

Through our integrated offerings, we provide comprehensive, coherent, and lasting solutions to education’s most long-standing and complicated problems.

Organizational Culture

Bellwether takes our mission of serving educators, students, organizations, and communities seriously. But we try not to take ourselves as individuals quite so seriously. We do challenging work, and we know how to have fun. From jumpsuits and talent shows at retreats, to PowerPoint presentations on werewolves and vampires at team meetings, we embrace our individuality — our quirks, talents, and diversity of viewpoints. We welcome different experiences and perspectives because we know that our team is stronger for having a variety of political, cultural, and educational beliefs represented. 

Bellwether strives to make the work rewarding and sustainable so we can find harmony between demanding jobs and full personal lives. We are proud that our team has poets, hockey players, food bloggers, activists, teachers, karate black belts, church leaders, cyclists, and much more. Our flexible work environment allows many of our team members to work where they like, and when they like (within reason, of course). This allows us to operate in ways that feel most productive to us and do more of what we love doing on our own time.

These qualities are clear in the core values that guide our work and reflect what is truly important to us as an organization:

  • Mission Mindset: We are dedicated to dramatically improving outcomes for low‐income students. Our nonprofit status allows us to focus on this mission, and it guides the people we hire and the clients and projects we support.
  • Tailored Excellence: We work with our clients to develop customized, innovative solutions. We direct our unwavering focus on quality toward successful outcomes for our clients.
  • Synergy: We believe the whole is greater than the sum of its parts, and that our teams make each other better.
  • Integrity: We exemplify the highest standards of individual and organizational ethics. We carefully balance client confidentiality with transparency to other clients and the public.
  • Diversity and Inclusion: We believe that to achieve our mission, we must be a diverse and inclusive organization broadly reflecting the various communities we serve.
  • Flexibility: We believe in the philosophy of “working smarter, not harder.” We trust our co-workers and teams to do excellent work in the manner they see fit.
  • No Drama: We have no tolerance for drama or the politics of education affecting our work. We respectfully and proactively deal with frustrations, disagreements, and unexpected hurdles.

Further, we value many forms of diversity and believe race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic issues play an especially acute role in the education sector and consequently our work. By actively seeking and hiring talent with diverse backgrounds and experiences, and maintaining an environment where divergent ideas and perspectives are freely expressed, we increase our collective ability to deliver thoughtful, relevant solutions and analyses for our clients and the education sector.


As part of our mission to build the field of talented individuals in the education entrepreneurship and reform space, Bellwether regularly employs interns who work under the direction of Bellwether staff in both our Thought Leadership and Strategy Service Areas. Bellwether interns participate in meaningful work experiences in the field, are engaged in substantive projects and treated as core members of our team. Interns provide both quantitative and qualitative research support to Bellwether staff, working on both long- and short-term projects as needed for each service area. They also write memos, briefings, and blog posts on a range of education reform topics; participate in meetings with clients and funders; and represent Bellwether by attending policy forums, briefings, and other events around Washington, D.C. Because we are a small organization with an "all hands on deck" mentality, interns do perform occasional administrative tasks to support Bellwether staff teams' work, constituting less than 10 percent of total time.

Bellwether interns must possess strong research, problem-solving, interpersonal communication, and writing skills and be able to work both independently and as members of a team. A commitment to improving public education, sense of initiative, time management skills, and willingness to ask questions and self-advocate in the work environment are also necessary. Familiarity with key issues in education reform in the United States today is desired, but not required. Interns must have completed high school and either be a graduate of or currently enrolled in an institution of higher education.


Bellwether Internships are typically uncompensated, but financial assistance may be available for candidates with demonstrated need. 


Washington, D.C.


Flexible: We typically retain interns for the fall, spring, and summer semesters.

To Apply

Bellwether Education Partners is committed to providing equal opportunities. It is our policy to ensure that all individuals with whom we are in contact are not discriminated against on the basis of age, race, ethnicity, color, disability, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, national origin, religion, sexual orientation, or veteran’s status.

The review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position(s) is filled. Applications should consist of a letter of interest and a current resume and should be submitted electronically. Applications or inquiries about the position should be directed to:

Bonnie O'Keefe

Bellwether Education Partners