Sunday, October 28, 2012

State Department eIntern and Cuba

So how do you like them apples?
U.S. diplomats in Havana evidently have an "eIntern," who was scheduled to do a project related to independent libraries in Cuba.
The eIntern was expected to work for nine months during the 2012-2013 academic year. The job is unpaid, but would be a great opportunity for anyone interested in learning more about the Foreign Service.
The eIntern's duties were to:
Develop book club discussion questions and activities for classic American literature for adults, youth and children for use (in) Cuba's independent libraries, and research quality Spanish language resource websites to link to USINT's home page.
See more about the State Department's Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) eInternship program here.

The original job announcement is below:

SALARY RANGE: $0.00 to $0.00 / Per Year
OPEN PERIOD: Monday, July 02, 2012 to Friday, July 20, 2012
SERIES & GRADE: GS-0099-04
POSITION INFORMATION: . - VSFS eInterns serve for a period of up to nine months. Potential opportunities to continue longer.

DUTY LOCATIONS: MANY vacancies - Domestic and Abroad
WHO MAY BE CONSIDERED: You must be a U.S. citizen and a college or graduate student, as defined in the Qualifications: Education section.

For questions about the Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) eInternship program, please contact the Virtual Student Foreign Service program at

For technical assistance with this application, please contact the Help Desk at 1-866-656-6830 or

VSFS is a virtual internship program for students to learn about and support the work of the State Department. Apply to become part of the effort for successful American 21st century statecraft via the use of Web 2.0 tools. eInterns will complete work virtually without the need to leave their academic institution. As Secretary Clinton stated at her 2009 New York University commencement address, "the biggest challenges we face today will be solved by the 60 percent of the world's population under the age of 30. And already, young people, like all of you, are using their talents and ingenuity to help fashion their own brand of service and diplomacy."

The Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) is an academic year-long, unpaid eInternship program. Announced in May 2009 by Secretary Clinton, VSFS virtually connects U.S. citizen college students with State Department domestic offices and U.S. diplomatic posts overseas to engage in digital diplomacy. Because these eInternships are virtual, students can have a flexible virtual work schedule during the academic year, allowing both academic and eInternship goals to be met.

Secretary Clinton and the State Department are looking to American college students to lead the State Department in conducting digital diplomacy and engage American citizens in its diplomatic efforts. A Virtual Student Foreign Service eInternship is an opportunity to build a relationship with the State Department and to work on various projects to advance our nation's diplomatic and developmental goals. eInterns will act as citizen diplomats to connect with posts abroad to engage in our increasingly interconnected world. Social media tools such as blogging, Facebook, Google docs, Twitter, and YouTube are frequently used in a VSFS eItnernship program. We also envision opportunities for eInterns to connect with each other and work collaboratively with eInterns across the country.

Join the Department of State and the Bureau of Information Resource Management's Office of eDiplomacy to conduct digital eInternships that further U.S. diplomacy and build upon the realities of the networked world.

The Office of eDiplomacy encourages college and graduate students from all majors and backgrounds to apply to the Virtual Student Foreign Service eInternship program.


  • A U.S. citizen
  • A college or graduate student at the freshmen status or higher
  • In good academic standing in an accredited institution
  • VSFS eInterns will not need to obtain a U.S. Government security clearance

VSFS eIntern duties and responsibilities will vary according to the location and needs of each diplomatic post or domestic office and VSFS projects identified. VSFS projects may be research based, contributing to reports on issues such as human rights, economics or the environment. They may also be more technology oriented, such as working on web pages, or helping produce electronic journals. Students are expected work virtually on an average of 5-10 hours per week on VSFS eInternship projects. Most work and projects are internet-based.

Past VSFS projects included:

Creating a forum for host country and American students to exchange their ideas, experience, and knowledge about environmental advocacy
Promoting student programs in the U.S. and civic engagement by using new media
Identifying and using journalism trends to reach out to students and young journalists
Expanding a post's English learning and educational advising
Creating lesson plans on environmental conservation and for schools in remote areas of the country
Researching, interviewing, and producing a video on visa lottery winners' stories and experiences in the US for Consular outreach
All work recognizes that VSFS eInterns do not have U.S. Government security clearances.

If you meet the requirements listed in this vacancy, you have the minimum qualifications for a VSFS eInternship. However, this does not guarantee that you will be selected for a VSFS eInternship. The posts' or offices’ programs to which you apply will evaluate your application further based on their needs and will make the final decision.

An applicant must be:

  • A U.S. citizen
  • A college student of freshmen status or higher
  • A part or full-time student pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree at an accredited U.S. college or university

IMPORTANT: You are eligible to apply for the Department's Virtual Student Foreign Service eInternship program if you will be enrolled as a part or full-time student (as defined in the Education Qualifications section above.) If selected for a VSFS eInternship, you must provide proof that you have registered, or have been accepted for enrollment.

Applicants who meet the basic qualification requirements will be further evaluated by the point of contact person for each proposal to which students have applied. Representatives at U.S. diplomatic posts and State Department domestic offices will determine the extent to which an applicant's education, experience, and background indicates that he/she possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities needed for the specific VSFS eInternship.

Virtual Student Foreign Service eInterns are unpaid and not Federal government employees. They are not entitled to any employee benefits. To repeat, there are no employee benefits associated with the VSFS eInternship position. Applying course credit for participating in a VSFS eInternship must be determined by the student and the academic institution.

Once completed, questions concerning verification of your eInternship should be directed to the Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) eInternship program at

VSFS eInternship work will be done virtually. Students must have access to a computer with Internet access in order to complete the assignments.

NOTE: There is NO travel associated with, nor required for, this position. Work will be completed by VSFS eInterns from their dorm room, apartment on/nearby campus, at home, and at other locations to be selected by the VSFS eIntern.

It is the policy of the Federal Government to treat all of its employees with dignity and respect and to provide a workplace that is free from discrimination whether that discrimination is based on race, color, religion, sex (including gender identity or pregnancy), national origin, disability, political affiliation, marital status, membership in an employee organization, age, sexual orientation, or other non-merit factors.

Applications must be submitted electronically through the "Gateway to State" system. To begin the application process, please click on the "Apply Online" button to the right.

You have until 11:59 pm Eastern Time on the closing date of this announcement to complete the application process. This includes submitting your online application as well as any required documents as defined in the Required Documents section.

IMPORTANT : Applicants may either electronically upload or fax in their required documents through USAJobs.

In addition to completing the resume and online application, which includes a Statement of Interest, all applicants must also provide their transcript. Both official and unofficial transcripts are acceptable as part of the application process. You must electronically submit your transcript by uploading or faxing it through USAJobs. You will be prompted to do so. If your transcript does not yet reflect your grades from either the current or most recent semester, you may still submit that transcript. If you are a first-year student and do not have a transcript, please submit a copy of your most recent course schedule to verify enrollment. If you are a first year graduate student, you must submit a copy of your most recent undergraduate transcript. Your application will not be considered if you mail or fax your transcripts directly to the Department of State.

Please do not send recommendation letters as a part of your application, they will not be considered.

VSFS Program
Phone: 202-634-3605
Fax: 000-000-0000
Agency Information:
U.S. Department of State
2025 E Street, N.W.
Rm. NE6148A
Washington, DC
Fax: 000-000-0000
You will be contacted by the Office of eDiplomacy to be notified of your acceptance to the eInternship program. eDiplomacy will also contact students not selected.

Applicants may view the status of their application on the Gateway to State site.

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