Center for Campus Free Speech Internship
The Center for Campus Free Speech (www.campusspeech.org) was created by a variety of members of the higher education community - students, faculty, administrators, and others - to protect and to promote free speech on campuses. The Center acts as a clearinghouse of information, provides specialized support to campuses, and connects concerned educators, administrators, lawyers and students into a national network. In addition, we work as part of the Free Exchange on Campus Coalition to stop proposals that would restrict what students can learn in class.
Freedom and open debate are at the core of what makes learning possible at a college campus. It’s this freedom that sponsors new ideas, fosters debate, exposes students to frames and theories they have never encountered and challenges core beliefs. It’s hard to imagine universities successfully challenging their students and their communities without the freedom to say, think and debate anything and everything.
However, across the nation opponents of free speech and academic freedom are rallying to silence the debate and discussion at our nation’s universities. From restrictive “speech zones” to the national campaign for an “academic bill of restrictions”, today’s students face tremendous challenges to their right to learn in a diverse marketplace of ideas.
The Center works with students, helping them to run effective campaigns to preserve and expand speech rights on campus, educate administrators with our resources and network of experts, and defend faculty members’ right to academic freedom through the Free Exchange on Campus coalition.
As an intern at the Center you can gain valuable skills and course credit while you contribute to the fight to preserve a free exchange of ideas on America’s campuses. Internships are designed to give students a better understanding of first amendment issues in higher education while strengthening the work of our programs and building the organization. All Interns work closely with our staff to develop goals and a plan of action. In addition, you will learn valuable skills in organizing campaigns, working with the media, publicity and developing and running a campaign.
All of our interns work to build support for our efforts to protect academic freedom and free speech on college campuses. Beyond that we’re interested in matching the myriad of needs of a service like ours with your individual strengths and interests. Intern responsibilities may include:
Build and Expand the Center’s Political Network
- Build coalitions with student, civil liberties, and higher education groups
- Mobilize concerned students, faculty, administrators and lawmakers
- Identify and reach out to new constituencies on campuses around the nation
- Use our network to partner groups in need of assistance with experts who care about their issues
Generate media attention and build public awareness
- Work with local, state and national media by writing press releases, researching media contacts and developing talking points for the Center’s campaigns
- Expand the Center’s online presence by writing content for our website/blog
- Use Twitter and Facebook to reach out to new constituencies and get them following the Center’s work
Research and Develop the Center’s resources
- Develop an in depth knowledge of at least one of the Center’s priority campaigns
- Help research and develop new resources like white-papers, toolkits and reports and distribute them nationally to students, faculty, administrators and lawmakers
Manage a local campaign
- Participate in weekly goal setting and planning meetings with staff and coalition partners
- Research and outreach to new coalition partners
- Work with staff to develop an effective campaign strategy
- Help to coordinate campaign actions and major events
- Strong commitment to academic freedom and a free exchange of ideas on campus.
- Strong writing and analytical skills.
- Ability to speak persuasively.
- Enthusiasm for our work and a desire to make a difference.
Though the Center’s internships are unpaid, students often may receive academic credit from their college or university.
The Center is located in the South Loop neighborhood of Chicago, Illinois.
How to Apply:
Students interested in more information on internships should contact the Center at 312-291-0396. To apply, please e-mail a cover letter and resume to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include “Internship” in the subject of your e-mail.