Harvard Climate Internship Program

The Harvard Climate Internship Program (HCIP) is a university-wide program supporting graduate students who work in a climate policy-oriented summer internship. It aims to complement the classroom climate learning experience, build the climate community, showcase future climate leaders, and promote broad representation in the program. Recipients may receive up to $7,000, as well as mentoring and an opportunity to participate in programming with policy practitioners and Harvard faculty.
Feb 14, 2023

Deadline: Applications for 2023 are closed.

Recipients may receive up to $7,000 as well as mentoring and the opportunity to participate in Zoom-based programming with policy practitioners and Harvard faculty.  For consideration, complete the application form (link below) and email Nora O’Neil, nora_oneil@hks.harvard.edu with supplemental documents for your confirmed summer internship.

There are four primary objectives for the program:

  • Complement the Classroom Climate Learning Experience: HCIP will support climate policy-oriented field experiences that provide opportunities for students to apply their tools and training acquired from students’ coursework to supplement and expand their learning at Harvard.
  • Build the Climate Community: HCIP will enhance the connections among students, faculty, policy practitioners, and alumni focused on climate policy-related topics. 
  • Showcase Future Climate Leaders: HCIP will demonstrate how Harvard training prepares our students for tackling climate policy challenges. 
  • Promote Broad Representation in the Program: HCIP will seek a diverse group of students, mentors, and policy practitioners for the summer programming.

The Harvard Climate Internship Program will provide students with the following:

  • Funding: Students may receive up to $7,000, which could supplement other sources of internship funding to a combined total of $7,000.  This will serve as a form of “leveling up,” in which all students participating in the program would receive at least $7,000 from the combination of their employer, other internship support programs, and HCIP. 
  • Mentoring: Students will be assigned a mentor from Harvard alumni working on similar topics. 
  • Programming: Students will participate in weekly Zoom-based programming that will engage policy practitioners and Harvard faculty. We will also explore opportunities to engage this cohort in activities over the subsequent academic year.

Eligibility Requirements

The Harvard Climate Internship Program is open to any Harvard graduate student who will return to campus for at least one semester after completion of the grant. Students are responsible for securing their own climate-related internship with a public, private, or non-profit organization.  Both U.S.-based and international opportunities are eligible for funding. The duration of the internship must be a minimum of eight weeks between the end of the spring semester and the beginning of the fall semester. How the student schedules the time is up to the student and the host organization. 

Additionally, this program is open to students who have already lined up fully-paid summer positions. We would welcome such students to our programming and provide mentoring support even if we are not awarding them funds for their summer position.   

Application Deadlines

The deadline for applications for 2023 has passed. Award decisions were announced on April 25.

How To Apply

HKS students: Apply through the HKS Summer Funding Common Application (opens noon, March 1, 2023)

Non-HKS Harvard graduate students:  Apply using the online application form (application link available here beginning noon, March 1, 2023) 

Applicants for the Harvard Climate Internships must also submit the following materials:

  1. Description of the organization and the proposed project. Please summarize how it relates to climate policy and why this opportunity will benefit both you and the organization (two-page maximum). 
  2. Letter from the employing organization agreeing to the arrangement and the responsibilities outlined above.
  3. Details on other funding received to support the summer internship, including payment from host organization.
  4. Resume.

Supporting documents should be sent via email to nora_oneil@hks.harvard.edu and include, in the subject heading, “HCIP application – [Your first and last name],” e.g., HCIP application – Jane Smith. HKS students may upload through Summer Funding Common App.

Information Session

Join us on Monday, March 20, 5:00-5:30pm, for a virtual Q&A session about the program. Register for the Zoom event to get the meeting link.


The program is sponsored by the Salata Institute for Climate and Sustainability, which functions across the University to accelerate and coordinate research and education on climate change, the environment, and sustainability. The Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government contributes administrative support.


Nora O’Neil, Program Manager, HCIP
Mossavar-Rahmani Center for Business and Government
John F. Kennedy School of Government
Harvard University
79 John F. Kennedy Street
Cambridge, MA 02138
E-mail: nora_oneil@hks.harvard.edu