About the Agency
The Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) is an academic year-long, unpaid eInternship program. VSFS virtually connects U.S. citizen college students with State Department, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Foreign Commercial Service, Foreign Agriculture Service, Broadcasting Board of Governors, and other US government agency 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.
The State Department is looking to American college students to lead the State Department and U.S. Government in conducting digital diplomacy and engage American citizens in its diplomatic efforts. A Virtual Student Foreign Service eInternship is an opportunity to play an important role in advancing the federal government's reach in diplomacy, development, journalism, trade, and agriculture initiatives. eInterns will act as citizen diplomats and will have the opportunity to connect with each other and work collaboratively with eInterns across the country.
The Department of State and the Bureau of Information Resource Management's Office of eDiplomacy encourage college and graduate students from all majors and backgrounds to apply to the VSFS eInternship program.
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 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.