Intern at the Tax Foundation

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Our summer 2016 application period closed on April 1, 2016. We are accepting applications for the fall 2016 and spring 2017 programs.

Note: Second-year, third-year, and part-time law students should apply for our clerkship program. First-year law students are welcome to apply for our summer internship program.

About the Tax Foundation
Since its founding in 1937, the Tax Foundation has been looked to for non-partisan and principled research and analysis of tax issues at all levels of government. Best known for our annual calculation of "Tax Freedom Day," we work to raise economic awareness among taxpayers, lawmakers, and media.

While there are a number of Washington, D.C.-based public policy groups today that cover a broad range of policy issues, only the Tax Foundation provides a principled voice on the impact of tax and fiscal policy at the federal, state, and local levels.

About Our Internship Program
We offer a unique internship program designed to introduce undergraduate and graduate students to tax policy principles, and apply them in assessing and advancing public policy. Working directly with our staff in various areas of tax policy, interns gain valuable professional experience and learn about all aspects of our operation.

While data entry and routine tasks are part of the internship, the majority of the work is substantive. Interns are afforded flexibility to attend events, lectures, and seminars around Washington, D.C. As a non-partisan research institution, we encourage interns to develop a broad sense of our principles and find innovative ways to contribute to our mission. We bring in expert speakers to interact with our interns, and each intern is assigned a staff mentor.

The Tax Foundation is happy to work with outside fellowship programs to host interns, and to assist in arranging for school credit. Full-time interns receive a stipend of $920 per half-month; part-time interns receive a pro-rated share of that stipend.

Internship Areas:

Federal Policy interns work with our team of economists with emphasis on data analysis.  Economics interns should be comfortable with mathematics and statistics and computer coding skills are a plus.

State Policy interns track major state fiscal issues, research trends, and conduct policy analysis, supporting our efforts to report and comment on current state tax topics.

Legal interns assist with legal research and analysis.

Communications and Outreach interns contribute to our outreach efforts, strategizing about marketing tools, drafting and revising press releases, and substantively contributing to our podcast and video efforts.

Development and Fundraising interns creatively support fundraising activities through a campaign designed to involve innovative social media use, e-mail fundraising, print campaigns, and corporate networking.

Examples of Intern Projects
Past interns, with the assistance of our staff, have researched and published commentaries on policy in newspapers and journals, participated in area events, and posted on our tax policy blog. Examples include:

  • Erik Cederwall (fall 2014)created and conducted an interview series on profit shifting with 20 of the top academics and practitioners in the world of tax policy and wrote over a dozen blog posts on U.S. and international taxes.
  • Liz Emanuel (summer 2014) authored 13 blog posts and coauthored a major report on state and local taxes.
  • Tyler Dennis (summer 2014) authored 10 blog posts on topics ranging from carbon taxes in Australia to marijuana taxes in Colorado.
  • Colby Pastre (fall 2013) helped develop the communications department year-end report, including a re-design to reflect our strategy and branding efforts. He drafted four press releases for major policy reports, managed our massive media hit database, and designed multiple infographics and charts used in reports and blogs.
  • Elia Peterson (fall 2013) authored eight blog posts on tax policy at the federal, state, and local level, and contributed to a forthcoming major report on the federal alternative minimum tax. Elia was quoted in USA Today for his work on the Massachusetts “tech tax.” He helped with data collection on our State Business Tax Climate Index, which is downloaded over 500,000 times annually.
  • Phil Dittmer (summer 2011) authored a large study on effective corporate tax rates, dueled on the blog with a congressman regarding federal tax reform, and wrote blog posts on shoe tariffs, tax penalties on the Amish, and transaction taxes.
  • Fred Hubach (summer 2011) authored a study on tax amnesties.
  • Jason Sapia (summer 2011) researched obesity taxes, co-authored a study on local income taxes, and wrote blog posts on ethanol tax credit and Illinois tax checkoffs.
  • Sarah Hyon (spring 2011) researched unemployment insurance taxes and gasoline taxes.
  • Kailee Tkacz (spring 2011) authored a review of Connecticut tax changes, studied tax-induced cigarette smuggling, and met the IRS commissioner, and wrote blog posts on film tax credits, congressional hearings, and the estate tax.
  • Alex Wood-Doughty (spring 2011) compiled data for Facts & Figures, drafted testimony on California tax reform, co-authored a study on Michigan tax reform, and blog posts on tax breaks for Twitter, online sales taxes, and mandatory tax preparation.
  • Steven Pahuskin (summer 2010) prepared a study of income taxes imposed on out-of-state athletes.
  • Xander Stephenson (summer 2010) authored 6 blog posts, researched state tax changes and sales tax holidays, and attended over 30 related events in the DC area.
  • Micah Cohen (summer 2009) co-authored with Kiran an op-ed, "Solving California's Budget Problems," published in his hometown paper, the San Diego Union-Tribune.
  • Andre Dammert (summer 2009) co-authored a piece with Tax Foundation President Scott Hodge on corporate tax rates in the OECD countries.
  • Will Luther (summer 2008) prepared a study on film tax credits published in-house and distributed to state legislators and activists across the country.
  • Sarah Larson (summer 2008) organized logistics for summer conferences and authored 10 blog posts on many topics.
  • Adam Creighton (summer 2007) authored a tongue-in-cheek op-ed, "Taxing Obesity: A Modest Proposal," which was published in The American.
  • Sara Cseresnyes (summer 2006) co-authored an op-ed, "Soda Tax the Wrong Way to Curb Obesity," which was published in the Denver Post.
  • Justine Lam (summer 2004) authored an op-ed, "Don't Let the Cigarette Tax Hurt the Poor," which was published in the Contra Costa Times.
  • Nicole Akar (summer 2004) was quoted in an editorial on tax exemptions in the Florida Times-Union.


Tax Foundation internships are available each fall, spring, and summer, and applications are considered on a rolling basis, with preference given to earlier applications (see the notation at the top of this page for which applications are being considered currently).

Application deadlines:
For Summer 2015: No later than April 1, 2015
For Fall 2015: No later than August 1, 2015
For Spring 2016: No later than December 1, 2015

Internships are located at our office in downtown Washington, D.C., located one block from the Metro Center metro station (Red/Orange/Blue/Silver lines) and three blocks from McPherson Square metro station (Blue/Silver/Orange lines). We are committed to responding to completed applications within 2 weeks of deadlines.

To apply, please fill out the form below.

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