2019 Internship Program

The Kauffman Foundation Summer Internship program will engage a diverse group of 15-20 college students (undergraduate and graduate level) in a paid summer internship experience in Kansas City, Missouri, with three components: meaningful project work, civic engagement, and professional development.

We seek college students who are intellectually curious and passionate about our mission. Specifically, we seek interns who want to partner with us to eliminate barriers so that every person – regardless of their background – can take risks, achieve success, and give back to their communities.

We know that diverse teams are high-performing teams; therefore, we seek college students with different perspectives and life experiences.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Available for full-time, paid work June 3-July 26 (all interns will be onsite at the Kauffman Foundation in Kansas City, Missouri).
  • Currently enrolled in college courses, undergraduate or graduate level (enrolled and/or completing courses in Spring 2019, or enrolled to start courses in Fall 2019).
  • Committed to completing substantive projects in the areas of entrepreneurship, education, and/or Kansas City Civic.
  • Committed to professional development, network development, and civic engagement experiences offered through the Kauffman internship program.

How to apply in two simple steps:

Step 1: Complete this quick questionnaire and attach your resume (saved as lastname_firstname).

Step 2: Provide a 1-minute video (saved as lastname_firstname) that answers the following three questions:

  • Who are you?
  • What do you care about?
  • Why are you interested in an internship at the Kauffman Foundation?

Only those applicants who complete all information will be considered (you will not be judged on the quality of your video). Deadline to apply is January 31, 2019.

If you have questions, please contact us.


The following are the 2019 internships:

Conference Center | Events

Project Title: Event Coordination

The Conference Center is a key city asset owned and operated by the Kauffman Foundation. Our Conference Center is open to 501(c)(3) organizations, as well as local and state government organizations. We work with meeting planners from organizations to help plan their events at our venue. We also work with internal clients from the Kauffman Foundation and Kauffman Scholars.

Responsibilities are focused on coordinating events in the Conference Center and include: learning our scheduling tool, assisting in the set-up of events, running reports for meetings, taking payment, and providing daily service to our customers – checking in with them, helping them with any outstanding needs, and living up to our Credo.


  • Preferred field of study: travel and tourism or hospitality.
  • Exceptional customer services skills under an array of circumstances.
  • Strong communication and interpersonal skills – including working effectively with people in a range of roles and with a range of event planning experience (C-level, admins, non-planners, etc.).

Education | Program and Engagement

Project Title: Education Program and Engagement

The Program and Engagement intern will participate in communications and community outreach projects, including: reviewing early childhood education applications, engaging stakeholders, and completing communications activities; highlighting student voices in our K-12 and postsecondary work, particularly how student voice relates to decision-making regarding education, work, and life after high school; and engaging in communications, planning, and projects related to large initiatives like Rethink Ed, high school design work, and development of postsecondary pathways.

The intern will also participate in evaluation, data, and research projects, including: creating a short data book focused on education in the KC metro with compelling data visualizations; scraping social media data over time to track where local teachers go after they leave the teaching profession; and scraping online reviews for early childhood care providers in the metro area to identify and specify school quality issues.


  • Socially comfortable and engaging.
  • Strong communication and writing skills.
  • Passionate about community engagement and activation.
  • Preferred: Social science research skills and experience in survey development.

Entrepreneurship | 1MC and FastTrac

Project Title: 1 Million Cups (1MC) and Kauffman FastTrac Research and Program Development

Assist with the development of the next generations and expansion of the Kauffman Foundation 1MC program and Kauffman FastTrac.

Responsibilities include researching new 1MC pilot cities, analyzing what’s working and what isn’t in current cities, and helping to create tools and resources for 1MC organizers across the country. Additional responsibilities include supporting the day-to-day activities such as social media, website, and application testing; and assisting with the targeted growth campaign for the Kauffman FastTrac online program.


  • Preferred field of study: business, liberal arts, journalism, or communications.

Entrepreneurship | Communities

Project Title: Entrepreneurship Communities Landscape Analysis and Program Design (two internships available in this area)

Assist with the landscape study and program design for the Entrepreneurial Communities programs.

Responsibilities include interviews and research to better understand tools, programs, and data regarding vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystems; landscape study to support the Kauffman Entrepreneurial Ecosystem Building Playbook; research to support department goals, objectives, and strategies; and logistics and coordination support for the implementation of the ESHIP Communities initiatives.


  • Preferred field of study: social science, economics, urban planning, applied math, and/or applied economics.
  • Motivated, capable of self-direction, and able to work collaboratively in a team.

Entrepreneurship | Market Gaps

Project Title: Entrepreneurship Market Gaps RFP

Support the grant review process for the Kauffman Foundation 2019 Inclusion Open RFP process.

Responsibilities include research/landscape analysis, project management assistance, and supporting the grantee interview and selection process, as well as supporting a convening of grantees (event coordination/logistics).


  • Preferred field of study: business, liberal arts, and/or communications.
  • Ideal for a student with interests in community building, events, and design thinking.

Entrepreneurship | Research Data

Project Title: Entrepreneurship Research and Data (two internships available in this area)

Assist with data-related initiatives, including conducting research on data infrastructure, data sources, and opportunities to build out data initiatives in the broader strategy.

Responsibilities include assistance with the Kauffman Indicators work and methodological review for new initiatives and grant proposals.


  • Graduate level.
  • Must have experience in statistics.

Entrepreneurship | Special Projects

Project Title: Entrepreneurship Special Projects

Assist the Entrepreneurship Chief of Staff/Director of Entrepreneurial Communities in special projects related to overall department strategy and execution. May include projects to support operations, budgeting, and process refinement.


  • Preferred field of study: business.
  • Strength or experience in project management, finance, and business analysis.

Evaluation | Strategic Learning

Project Title: Strategic and Organizational Learning

This internship sits at the intersection of Evaluation and the Talent and Culture strategies and focuses on identifying models, tools, and approaches for advancing strategic learning in organizations – whether for-profit, non-profit, or philanthropic foundations.

Responsibilities include conducting a literature review on best practices for building the capacity of organizations to reflect and draw lessons from evidence and experience, conducting interviews with leaders in the field, identifying existing tools and models in use by others, and creating a set of recommendations on how best to increase the capacity of the Kauffman Foundation to be a learning organization.


  • Preferred field of study: graduate level program, master's or PhD in relevant social science fields
  • Knowledge of basic research methodology, including literature reviews, qualitative data collection, and actionable reporting of results
  • Experience doing research and/or evaluation is preferred
  • Basic competency using Microsoft Office programs (Word, Excel, PPT)
  • Personal characteristics: self-directed, takes independent initiative, strong communication (written and verbal), problem-solving, and interpersonal skills, and highly adaptable

Investments | Research

Project Title: Investment Research and Review (two internships available in this area)

Assist the Investment team with projects related to the $2.3B multi-manager portfolio. The portfolio is invested across a wide range of asset categories including public equity, private equity, hedge funds, energy partnerships, and real estate partnerships.

Examples of projects may include: a review of a historical market event, including key takeaways that could help us better understand and navigate the current market environment; a study of a current investment manager (this would include a review of the team, investment philosophy, and process, as well as a review of the portfolio to assess whether it aligned with the stated philosophy); an analysis of a prospective investment manager, including a review of the strength of the organization, team, investment philosophy, process, and performance; data collection and analysis on the holdings of our private equity managers.


  • Flexible regarding a degree.
  • Motivated, capable of self-direction, and able to work collaboratively in a team.
  • Should be comfortable with quantitative analysis and Excel.

Kansas City Civic | Digital Marketing

Project Title: Digital Marketing

The Digital Marketing intern will work with the Kauffman Foundation and the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art’s Marketing and Communications department to create a comprehensive online system for reaching new museum visitors and for moving non-visitors and active visitors through the marketing funnels toward membership and support of the Nelson-Atkins Museum. Specifically, the intern will:

  • Support the museum’s efforts to understand visitors and non-visitors and help identify target audiences in general for particular exhibitions and events.
  • Reach target audiences online through understanding of online behavior.
  • Mine existing museum data to identify potential among visitors and members.
  • Support market research efforts to find answers about consumer habits and trends.
  • Brainstorm ideas for creative marketing campaigns.
  • Assist in the creation of content and initiatives to reach target audiences.
  • Work with Marketing and Communications department to establish search engine optimization online and through SEO, Google AdWords, Google Analytics Tag Manager, and WordPress.
  • Assist in the effort to create a seamless website experience.


  • Bachelor’s degree in marketing, communications, or technology-related specialty.
  • Solid computer skills and knowledge of marketing software and applications.
  • Background in working with a customer relationship management (CRM) tool, preferably Tessitura.
  • Thorough understanding of digital marketing, lead nurturing, email marketing and marketing automation, A/B testing, and optimization.
  • Excellent writer and communicator.
  • Knowledge or love for art is a plus.

Public Affairs | Analytics

Project Title: Audience Growth

Work to provide insight and analysis from social and web analytics to help inform editorial strategy and audience growth opportunities. Assist in executing audience growth strategies, which may include sourcing and building analytics dashboards, community management on digital channels, identifying influencers, building audience lists, and digital ad campaigns. Execute best practices for SEO, keywords, and tags across digital channels to increase and prioritize discoverability. Develop, test, and present outcomes of a strategic hypothesis to Public Affairs team.


  • Preferred field of study: Strategic communications, public relations, advertising, marketing, or statistics, although anyone with direct experience in digital analytics, audience growth/advertising campaigns, and familiarity with content distribution will be considered.

Public Affairs | Education

Project Title: Education Student Voice Content Planning

Work closely with the Director of Engagement-Education and the Public Affairs editorial team in producing content generated from and/or elevating student voices from across the Kansas City metro region. This intern will coordinate sessions with youth, interview students, and partner with youth-servicing organizations for content. They will write content, curate quality student articles, and assist in utilizing social media to promote and market content.


  • Strong verbal and written communicator.
  • Passionate about youth and policy issues that affect youth.
  • Skills in social media, marketing, and/or journalism.

Public Affairs | Entrepreneurship

Project Title: Entrepreneurship Writing and Content Planning

Supports Entrepreneurship initiatives, including New Entrepreneurial Learning (NEL) through Public Affairs by assisting in project coordination, writing, editing, and marketing planning. This intern would also likely assist with social media, editorial needs, and content production.

Responsibilities include writing, editing, and planning for cross-channel content, including newsletters, email campaigns, landing pages, blog posts, and social media; supporting event and workshop communications; and managing projects, including meeting notes and timelines.


  • Preferred field of study: marketing, strategic communications, journalism, English, public relations, or related field.

Public Affairs | Storytelling

Project Title: Editorial

Assist with the weekly editorial process for our Kauffman.org content hub, Currents, by writing copy, generating story ideas, and collecting quotes, evidence, feedback, and digital assets as needed. Create and publish at least one in-depth editorial piece.

Craft social media posts and schedule content. Engage in social “listening” to identify topics and trends among audiences to generate story ideas or prompt amplification of thought leadership. Build social media packages for distribution to internal and external audiences.


  • Preferred field of study: Journalism, communications, or English major, although anyone with direct experience in news and feature reporting, digital storytelling, including video and multimedia, and familiarity with content creation will be considered.

Technology | Systems Analyst

Project Title: Systems Evaluation

Responsible for projects and tasks involving requirements gathering, networking, scripting, system design and data collection.


  • Pursuing a degree in computer science, information technology, computer engineering, or related field.
  • Programming skills.
  • Communication and organizational skills.
  • Networking skills preferred (not required).