Cause Areas


Thu Mar 22, 2018 - Mon Oct 22, 2018


1210 S. Bascom Ave, Suite 227San Jose, CA 95128



Founded in 1933, the International Rescue Committee is a leading non-sectarian non-profit organization providing emergency relief, protection, rehabilitation assistance, resettlement services, and advocacy for refugees and victims of oppression or violent conflict. The IRC responds to the world’s worst humanitarian crises and helps people to survive and rebuild their lives. At work in over 40 countries and 26 U.S. cities to restore safety, dignity and hope, the IRC leads the way from harm to home. Domestically, our 26 offices across the U.S. work with refugees to help them gain self-sufficiency, and ensure new arrivals have food, shelter and clothing.


As one of the IRC’s 26 domestic offices, the San Jose office serves refugees, asylees, special immigrants from Iraq and Afghanistan, and victims of human trafficking in Santa Clara County. Since opening in 1975, the San Jose office has resettled over 20,000 refugees, who in turn have helped to build a stronger community. A committed staff of professionals and volunteers provide essential case management and immigration services to immigrant families, providing them with the resources and tools to rebuild their lives with safety and dignity.


Interns work closely with the employment team and VESL instructor to provide basic ESL classes to newly arrived refugees, asylees and victims of trafficking. The English taught is primarily focused on creating a vocational vocabulary for IRC clients to secure their first job. Interns will help create, develop and implement curriculum and teach classes to IRC clients.

This position reports to the Employment Program Coordinator.


Minimum 10 hours per week for 4 months, with a courtesy notice of at least 2 weeks prior to leaving the organization. Hours can be completed during normal business hours of Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m.

This internship is unpaid


  • Develop lesson plans for 1 ELT classes per week; Classes are expected to be 1 - 2 hours in length and students are at the beginner to intermediate level
  • Practice English Language Skills with students (including grammar, conversation, reading and writing)
  • Lead each ESL class and record attendance as required by the IRC
  • Administrative tasks including file creation and maintenance
  • Other duties as requested by the VESL Instructor or Employment Services staff


We require that candidates have the following qualities:

  • Solidly reliable with strong attention to timeliness
  • Excellent communication skills (both interpersonal and with supervisors)
  • Possess a great attention to detail and be truly organized
  • Have a strong sense of personal initiative and be able to work independently in a fast-paced office.
  • An interest in international and refugee issues; prior experience with a multicultural setting a plus
  • Proficiency in Arabic, Farsi, Spanish or Tigrinya preferred.


  • The intern will also gain familiarity in cross-cultural training techniques, skills development and many other useful resources for career development.
  • The intern will learn about the challenges faced by new arrivals in the US.


Complete an online application and upload your resume and cover letter in a single PDF file to the application. Please tailor your cover letter to the position to which you are applying and include the following:

  • · Up to 3 positions of interest, ranked in order of preference
  • · Time availability for your internship, i.e. the number of hours you are available each week, specific days and times, and your anticipated start and end dates for interning
  • · Immediate interview availability, if different from internship availability
  • · Any requirements for filing your internship for school credit, e.g. total number of hours to be completed or filing deadline

For more information on the application process and timeline, visit our internships page at https://www.rescue.org/volunteer/internship-opportunities-san-jose-0.


  • People Skills
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Cross-cultural Communication
  • English
  • Critical Thinking

Good Match For


Requirements & Commitment

  • Driver's License Needed
  • Background Check
  • Must be at least 18
  • Orientation or Training
  • 2 days/week 9-12a
  • 4-6 months

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