Barnet, Landau, and Raskin Next Leaders Program

Applications for the 2022 Next Leaders Program are now closed.

The world crisis in governance, economic stability, and ethical guidance demands that we do our best to secure and sustain a better future. To sustain the movement, we need to galvanize those most impacted by the broken system: young people. A paid 10-week program, Next Leaders offers young activists training in public scholarship, that is, the connection between policy research, advocacy, and grassroots activism. Through its workshop and events series and individualized mentorship, Next Leaders looks to sharpen young scholar-activists’ voices and hone their skills. In addition to hands-on experience, each cohort will leave the program with a more nuanced understanding of environmental, racial, economic, gender, and peace justice.

Thanks to the generous support of the families of Marcus Raskin, Richard Barnet, and Saul Landau, we are able to endow a quarter of our Next Leaders internships. This has helped us further our mission of supporting young activists regardless of their financial status.

Watch the video below, produced and edited by Visual Communications and Design intern Hannah Hunter, to learn more about the 2016 summer experience from the Next Leaders themselves.


Here’s a little bit more about how the program works. It’s broken into four parts:

  1. Workshop and Events Series – We’ve prepared a curriculum of weekly workshops and events geared toward the following:
    • Building community within your cohort
    • Sparking intergenerational dialogue to brainstorm around new pressure points in the policy world
    • Sharing skills needed to become a successful public scholar
    • Providing a crash course on the frameworks, history, and current events of the progressive movement and policy sphere

    In addition to strengthened public scholarship skills, each cohort will leave the program with a more nuanced understanding of environmental, racial, economic, gender, and peace justice. Past workshops have included Op-ed Writing, Public Speaking, Racial Justice and Critical Race Theory, Power-Mapping and the Modern-day Labor Movement, and Restorative Justice.

  2. Mentorship – Each participant will get hands-on experience by working on one of our projects and will receive individualized mentorship and training from one of our IPS public scholars. Typical responsibilities include research, writing, shadowing on events with core allies, occasional “trips” to the Hill (which will now be virtual), and helping us with our social media presence. All of our interns also have the opportunity to work with our skilled editors and write for our in-house publications, and we often see participants’ work placed in notable publications such as USA Today and the Nation. Our interns work within one of the following core areas:
    • Economic and Racial Justice: Combating inequality means both lifting up and building power at the bottom, and breaking up concentration of wealth and power at the top. That’s why we work at the intersection of economic and racial justice through projects designed to build leadership and self-empowerment of black workers, immigrant workers, and low-wage workers, youth and families affected by incarceration, along with projects aiming to reverse the rules that criminalize poor people of color, and projects fighting to ensure that the wealthy and Wall Street corporations pay their fair share of taxes.
    • Climate Justice: In order to avert a climate catastrophe, we must transition away from fossil fuels to a clean energy economy. On both a domestic and a global level, climate change hurts poor people and communities of color first and worst, so we seek solutions that center economic and racial justice as critical components of addressing climate change.
    • Fundraising and Development: Interested in the nonprofit sector, or starting your own nonprofit someday? Fundraising is critical to the success and longterm health of every nonprofit organization. A fundraising and development internship is a great opportunity to see how a fundraising office works, and get involved in conversations around donor communications, event outreach strategy, and donor cultivation.
    • Peace and Foreign Policy: To build peace, we must dislodge the economic and political foundations of war. IPS believes that a just foreign policy is based on human rights, international law, and diplomacy over military intervention.
  3. Intergenerational Dialogue – A centerpiece of our definition of public scholarship is that we work on ideas with movement allies. Through the Next Leaders Program you’ll not only get plugged into the larger progressive network, but you’ll also be exposed to best practices of coalition building, grassroots activism, and organizing. And, you’ll have a chance to design your own mini-dialogue series with your cohort and our staff.
  4. Coaching and Career Development – We want to see our fellows find lasting careers in social change. Each fellow will receive at least 3 individual coaching sessions and resume reviews during the program and follow-up support after the program.


We offer an hourly wage of $15 for 37.5 hours weekly to offset the cost of working with IPS while you help us build the future of the progressive movement.

IPS firmly believes that financial barriers shouldn’t exclude people from internship opportunities, and we are grateful to our donors who have made it possible to ensure this internship is paid. However, we strongly encourage applicants to find resources through their schools and other scholarships if they have the ability to do so. Many schools offer assistance for summer internship programs, and we ask that all applicants explore those options first in order to allow us to accept a greater number of interns that do not have access to those resources.

Interns may also receive academic credit, and IPS is happy to assist interns in filling out any requisite forms to help with the credit process.


Summer 2022 Applications are now closed.

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