The National Book Foundation, presenter of the National Book Awards, welcomes applications from individuals seeking internships at the center of an established and active literary nonprofit. Interns assist with a variety of tasks and programs, including the National Book Awards, 5 Under 35, BookUp, Book Rich Environments, Why Reading Matters, and the Innovations in Reading Prize, as well as administrative, marketing and social media projects.

Internships at the National Book Foundation include a robust introduction to the world of literary non-profits, with exposure to aspects of programming, development, community engagement, and operations. Our small and dedicated staff ensures that every intern receives the mentorship and experience necessary to progress in the arts or publishing industry.

Our internships operate on a seasonal calendar, and require a minimum of 16 hours a week (ideally two full work days).

Fall Internships: September – December
Applications due July 1

Spring Internships: January – April
Applications due November 1

Internships are open to students currently enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate course of study; priority is given to applicants who will be receiving course credit for their internship.

General responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Assisting with National Book Award entries and procedures
  • Helping with the coordination of National Book Awards Week events and related materials
  • Receiving and sorting National Book Award Ceremony RSVPs and related correspondence
  • Supporting education and public program initiatives through event assistance, materials management, and program tracking and documentation.
  • Contributing to the National Book Foundation’s social media outlets.
  • Editing of press releases and marketing materials
  • Assisting at events outside working hours.

Qualifications: We are looking for a responsible self-starter who is hard-working, detail-oriented, organized, and able to multi-task. Excellent oral and written communication skills required. Having a passion for reading and literature is a must.

Compensation: Internships are unpaid; a local travel stipend is available.

To Apply for An Internship: Send resume, cover letter, and a list of ten favorite contemporary books to jobs@nationalbook.org with the subject line Internship as well as the season applying for. In the body of your email, please indicate where you are enrolled as a student, and whether you will be receiving course credit.


The National Book Foundation is committed to inclusivity and does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, ethnicity, age, gender identity, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, nationality, marital status, parental status, military service, or disability.

About the Organization: The National Book Foundation was founded in 1989 in order to administer the National Book Awards, which has been one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the country for the past 67 years. The mission of the National Book Foundation is to celebrate the best literature in America, expand its audience, and ensure that books have a prominent place in American culture. In addition to the National Book Awards, for which it is best known, the Foundation’s programs include 5 Under 35, a celebration of emerging fiction writers selected by former National Book Award Finalists and Winners; NBF Presents, which brings NBA authors to universities, libraries, festivals, and conferences across the country; Literature for Justice, a project that uses literature to contextualize and humanize the issue of mass incarceration in America; Author in Focus, a series comprised of panels, lectures, and film screenings designed to connect a broad audience with the works of seminal NBF-honored authors, beginning with James Baldwin in 2018; the Innovations in Reading Prize, awarded to individuals and institutions that have developed innovative means of creating and sustaining a lifelong love of reading; the Why Reading Matters conference, an opportunity for writers, activists, educators, librarians, and nonprofit leaders to explore innovative ways to celebrate literature and expand its influence; Book Rich Environments, a partnership with HUD, the U.S. Department of Education, the Urban Libraries Council, and the National Center for Families Learning, which has provided nearly 700,000 books to children and families in public housing authorities around the country; the Teen Press Conference, an opportunity for students to interview the current National Book Award Finalists in Young People’s Literature; Raising Readers, an adult-focused reading initiative to empower adults who work with and raise children to expand their own love of books and reading; and BookUp, a writer-led, after-school reading club for middle-school students.