CKA-KALCA Public Service Internship Program

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DESCRIPTION

At CKA, we believe that more Korean Americans must take on leadership roles in our society to demonstrate the power and potential of our community. The CKA-KALCA Public Service Internship Program (PSI) provides generous scholarships of up to $3,500 for college and graduate students completing their full-time summer internships throughout DC and NY. We also provide high-impact leadership training and closed-door mentoring with senior Asian American leaders throughout the summer, including CKA members, community leaders, policymakers, and opinion makers.

Admission to the PSI program does not guarantee acceptance to an internship. CKA will assist in placing those who have not secured a summer internship by the time they have been selected for the program. We encourage all applicants to begin applying for summer internships as soon as possible, particularly if they are pursuing an internship in the federal government, which may involve obtaining a security clearance.

For consideration for Summer 2020, applications should be submitted by Friday, February 14, 2020.

REQUIREMENTS

Eligibility

CKA does not discriminate on the basis of age, sex, disability, race, color, religion, ethnic/national origin, veteran status, or sexual preference in awarding the scholarships. 

To be eligible for the CKA-KALCA Public Service Internship, applicants must be at least a rising junior in college (during application period)graduate student, or a recent graduate who is interested in a career that strengthens their local and global communities. The internship must be full-time for at least 10 consecutive weeks and unpaid. Internships can be pre-arranged by the applicant or finalized upon award of the scholarship. We strongly encourage all applicants to apply for summer internships as well as apply for the PSI Program concurrently. 

Eligible placements include congressional offices in Washington and New York, federal agencies, nonprofit organizations, and advocacy groups. Placements cannot be political campaigns or include campaign activity.

Refer to the list of internship organizations

How to Apply (Deadline: February 14, 2020)

First Round - Online Application
Applications missing any of the following items will not be considered.
  • A completed and signed application
  • Resume
  • Most recent transcript (official or unofficial is acceptable)
  • A letter of recommendation
  • A personal statement on two of the following questions (maximum of 300 words for each answer):
  1. What skills, lessons, and/or relationships do you plan to bring back to your campus or community after your Public Service Internship
  2. Describe a need within the Korean American community you will be better equipped to help meet after your Public Service Internship.
  3. Who is your Korean American hero and why?
  4. CKA values volunteerism and the spirit of giving back to the community. What has been the most significant volunteering experience for you and how has that changed your outlook on public service?
Second Round - Interviews
Finalists will be contacted for interviews by no later than February 18, 2020.

FAQs

• DO YOU HAVE TO BE A US CITIZEN TO APPLY TO THE CKA-KALCA PUBLIC SERVICE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM?
– You must be a US citizen or a permanent resident to participate in this program. Individuals with valid work permits may also apply.

• DO YOU HAVE TO BE A KOREAN AMERICAN TO BE ELIGIBLE FOR THE CKA-KALCA PUBLIC SERVICE INTERNSHIP PROGRAM?
– You do not have to be Korean American to be eligible for this program. However, due to the program’s focus on Korean American leadership, Korean Americans are strongly encouraged to apply.

• HOW IS THE SCHOLARSHIP LEVEL DETERMINED?
– The number of weeks you will intern, with a preference for 10-week internships.

• WHAT ARE THE START AND END DATES OF THE PROGRAM?
– The PSI Program will start with a welcome dinner for the interns and CKA staff in early June and end with a closing ceremony at the end of August. Exact dates will be provided to participants by May.
– Due to students having various internship start dates, we will prioritize students who can participate in the program full-time for 10 consecutive weeks. We will consider making exceptions towards participants who miss the program for up to two weeks.

• WHAT IS THE TIME COMMITMENT FOR PARTICIPATING IN THE PSI PROGRAM?
– We expect all PSIs to participate in the following activities:
  • Welcome dinner in DC and NY
  • PSI Speaker Series events and group discussions
  • The closing ceremony in DC and NY
• DO YOU HAVE TO SECURE YOUR OWN INTERNSHIP OR WILL CKA HELP ME FIND ONE?
– CKA will assist in placing those who have not secured a summer internship by the time they have been selected for the program. We encourage all applicants to begin applying for summer internships as soon as possible, particularly if they are pursuing an internship in the federal government, which may involve obtaining a security clearance.

• WHAT IF I CAN’T FIND AN UNPAID INTERNSHIP IN THE PUBLIC SECTOR THAT IS TEN WEEKS LONG?
– We accept shorter-term internships on a case-by-case basis. We encourage those with internships less than ten weeks long to find a second internship to carry over to a ten-week period.

• WHEN WILL APPLICANTS BE NOTIFED OF THEIR ADMISSION?
– Applicants will be notifed by no later than March 7, 2020.

• ARE INTERVIEWS IN-PERSON?
– All interviews are conducted via Google Hangout to reduce the cost of travel.

• I APPLIED LAST YEAR BUT WAS NOT SELECTED FOR THE PROGRAM. CAN I REAPPLY?
– Yes, you are welcome to reapply to the program.

• WILL CKA HELP ME FIND HOUSING?
– All PSIs are responsible for finding their own housing.

• ARE THERE ANY HOUSING RESOURCES THAT YOU RECOMMEND?
– We encourage our students to join housing groups in online platforms such as Facebook and to keep an eye out for month-to-month or short-term leases. We also invite PSIs to connect with alumni of the program on housing options. Always request pictures of wherever you will be staying before signing any lease.

AWARD AMOUNT

$3,500

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