Pitch Internships

Pitch Your Own

Since 2015, UChicagoGRAD has facilitated the placement of interns in summer positions that jive closely with their academic and professional interests. Students are invited to submit proposals for internships with nonprofits, university entities, and small startups that might otherwise not be able to provide a stipend or payment. They create the relationship and work with the host organization to build a project that has lasting impact.

These internships require a minimum of 250 hours of work, distributed over a number of weeks that makes sense for students and their host organizations.  Interns have worked in Chicago, Los Angeles, Beijing, Delhi, Peru, the Southwestern United States, New York, Paris, and more.

Application Process

The 2017 "Pitch Your Own" process has concluded.  Below, find a summary of the application process.

  1. By February 15th, submit the necessary application materials to GRAD Gargoyle. This includes a resume and a one-page proposal that summarizes (a) the name of the internship host organization, (b) a description of the project that deliniates how the internship will advance your academic goals, how it will help develop skills that you would otherwise not get in your academic program, and how you are defining "impact." The proposal should mention how far along you are in the process of defining the role with the host organization, and whether they can provide any funding toward your stipend. (c) All intern candidates (if selected) must be prepared to submit a brief email of support from a faculty advisor and (d) an email from the host organization confirming their interest

    **You do not have to have a finalized project by at this point, but effective proposals demonstrate that conversations between the host and intern have started.**

  2. UChicagoGRAD recommends that applicants schedule a one-on-one meeting with a career development staff member at UChicagoGRAD for resume review (to take place before the application deadline). The easiest way to do this is to schedule time with dedicated career advisors in GRAD Gargoyle. A resume is required for the application (CVs will not be accepted).

  3. Candidates can also schedule a rehearsal internship interview with a UChicagoGRAD Oral Communications Consultant (also to take place before the application deadline). The easiest way to do this is to set up time with a UChicagoGRAD oral communications consultant in GRAD Gargoyle. This meeting is meant to improve your skills at communicating the value of your project, and will serve as practice for a potential final round interview at UChicagoGRAD. You should come away from this conversation having practiced the "live" version of your pitch, and better able to articulate the impact of your project and your fitness to the internship.


  4. Again, the proposal as a whole need not be in the final stages at the time of the initial deadline. UChicagoGRAD requests that students provide information about what kind of contact they have made with their target organization.

Selection Process

GGI proposals will be evaluated on quality of proposal, integration of proposal into academic work and professional goals, and feasibility of internship. Finalists will be notified within two weeks of the proposal deadline. At that point, UChicagoGRAD will conduct final round interviews. Internships will be awarded contingent on the intern's ability to produce the following final documents:

  1. Letter from organization that formalizes internship invitation
  2. Final internship description of no more than 1 page that includes a) objectives and responsibilities; b) supervisory structure; and c) expected outcome at the end of the internship

Note: it is the applicant's responsibility to make visa arrangements and housing accommodations if applicable. The Dean of Students in your school or division will review all awards.


GGI Pitch candidates must be enrolled in a full-time, degree-granting UChicago graduate program at the time of application. Internships should be between 10-15 weeks and must include at least 250 total hours of experience. Recipients must submit a post-internship summary to UChicagoGRAD and also are expected to serve as GGI Mentors for the following year's cohort of recipients. Domestic and international students are eligible to apply. Stipend eligibility will vary by division. Please consult with your Dean of Students to ascertain specific policies.