Careers at the Aspen Institute
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Aspen Institute employees come from a wide range of backgrounds and possess a unique blend of education, skill, and policy experience. We recognize that our people are our vital resource and we value their knowledge, enthusiasm, and commitment. At the Aspen Institute we offer competitive salaries and a wide variety of benefits to our employees and their families.

If you would enjoy working in a dynamic environment and are looking for an opportunity to become part of a stellar team of professionals, we invite you to apply online today.

Program Intern, Ascend

Department: ASCEND
Location: Washington, DC


The Aspen Institute

The Aspen Institute is a global nonprofit organization committed to realizing a free, just, and equitable society. Since its founding in 1949, the Institute has been driving change through dialogue, leadership, and action to help solve the most critical challenges facing communities in the United States and around the world. Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Institute has a campus in Aspen, Colorado, and an international network of partners.

Commitment to Diversity, Equity & Inclusion

To achieve our mission of a more free, just, and equitable society, we commit to working proactively to advance the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion across our myriad endeavors such as the recruitment, compensation, training, and advancement of staff. The best people-serving institutions make this commitment, and we seek to be a leader in the ways that we do so and learn from others. Visit our website to learn more about our commitment and recent actions taken toward building and nurturing a diverse and inclusive environment.


Ascend at the Aspen Institute is a catalyst and convener for systems, policy, and social impact leaders working to create a society where every family passes a legacy of prosperity and well-being from one generation to the next. We co-create and elevate innovative two-generation (2Gen) approaches with families and partners to forge pathways to educational success and economic mobility for both children and the adults in their lives.

Basic Function: 

Interns assume support responsibility for program associates and senior program staff, who have primary responsibility of project management and coordination of program deliverables. The Intern provides core support on key programmatic and operational tasks. Successful candidates will have a proven track record of taking initiative and an ability to learn and process information quickly and effectively.  In addition, the Intern will have strong interpersonal skills, exceptional organizing capacity, and a general knowledge of and interest in administrative tasks.

Essential Duties and Responsibilities

The majority of the internís time will be spent supporting the work of the following two initiatives at Ascend:

Ascend at the Aspen Instituteís Family Prosperity Innovation Community develops strategies and solutions to improve employment opportunities, economic security, and health and well-being for families with low incomes. By joining forces with parents and caregivers, employers, and policymakers, Family Prosperity removes barriers in order to create clearer, more equitable pathways for families and society to thrive.

2Gen Placed Based Field Building

Ascend has a number of place-based activities around landscaping, assessing, and creating communities of 2Gen practice by bringing together multiple stakeholders, including community-based organizations, philanthropy, and the public sector. The work relies heavily on relationships with the Ascend Network of more than 460 partner organizations throughout the United States.  


  • Support daily operations of Ascend staff such as drafting and facilitating email outreach to partners, notetaking and analysis and organizing files within  Ascendís Google Drive system.

  • Conduct research and gather/analyze data related key areas of focus within the Family Prosperity Innovation Community  

  • Support the development and expansion of communications strategies and creatives

  • Support updating and reviewing data for Network Partners in Salesforce

  • Work with team on reviewing practices for tracking Ascend Network activities


  • Provide high-level administrative support to the full team and, when applicable and necessary, to the program staff 

  • Provide administrative and logistical support for staff meetings and in-office functions


  • Support team with logistical elements of virtual and in-person forums, roundtables, strategy sessions and other convenings

Knowledge, Education and Experience:

  • Excellent computer skills including Word, Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint

  • Knowledge of virtual meeting platforms such as Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meets, etc.

  • Ability to work autonomously and with a small team

  • Attention to detail and ability to manage multiple tasks

  • Knowledge of and adherence to professional ethics

  • Good interpersonal skills, including a desire to learn, sense of humor, and creativity

Level of Authority:

  • Non-supervisory position

  • No budget authority

To Apply:

All applicants must submit a cover letter, resume, and 1-2 references for the Intern position. 

The Institute has implemented a mandatory COVID vaccination policy for all employees who will work at one of our physical locations, attend any of our in-person events or travel on behalf of the Institute. Staff unable to be vaccinated may request an exemption under certain circumstances.

The Aspen Institute is an Equal Opportunity Employer and complies with all District and federal laws. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, or protected veteran or disabled status and will not be discriminated against.

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