Internships, Training, and Volunteer Programs


AAPD Congressional Summer Internship Program

The American Association of People with Disabilities (AAPD) is an organization that encourages access, self-determination, competitive employment, and independent living for individual with disabilities. The AAPD Congressional Summer Internship Program provides 10-week internship opportunities for young adults with disabilities in federal agencies, congressional agencies, and nonprofit/for-profit organizations.


AmeriCorps provides opportunities for young adults to volunteer and to give back in their respective communities in America. There are three programs within AmeriCorp that young adults can enroll in: AmeriCorps State and National, AmeriCorps Vista, and AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps. Young adults can volunteer in the any of the following areas: community development, community outreach, children/youth, disaster relief, economic development, education, entrepreneur/business, elder care, ex-offender reentry, environment, health, hunger, homelessness, housing, homeland security, neighborhood revitalization, public safety, and technology.
College Internship Program (CIP)
Adults 18-26 with ADD, Asperger’s and OHI benefit from individualized social, academic, career and life skills. The mission is to inspire independence and expand the foundation on which young adults can build happy and productive life. 
Greater Washington Internship Coalition
The Greater Washington Internship Coalition collaborates and partners with a variety of internship programs for young adults with disabilities in the greater Washington, DC area. There are several internship programs that are a part of the coalition such as: AAPD Internship Program, White House Internship Program, Federal Workforce Recruitment Program, and American Bar Association. Young adults can apply for internships based upon their career interest.
Learn and Serve America
Learn and Serve gives detailed information on what service learning is and how it has made its impact around the country. This website gives an overview for how to incorporate service learning back into our educational system by providing more meaningful and substantial values into the lives of our students. Students can obtain further information on how to become involved in service learning or start a service learning program at their school.
Pathways for Students & Recent Graduates to Federal Careers
The federal government provides employment opportunities for students and recent graduates. There are three pathways that young adults can enroll in: internship program, recent graduate program, and presidential management fellows program. The federal government offers thousands of job opportunities in all different types of careers and occupations. Young adults with disabilities have the opportunity to be eligible to be hired by the federal government under a special Schedule A hiring authority.
Peace Corps
President Kennedy created the Peace Corps in 1961 as a way for young adults to serve their country through international volunteer experiences. Young people have volunteered to serve in over 70 countries around the world in any of the following areas: education, youth and community development, health, business and information and communication technology, agriculture, and environment. Applications must be submitted 9 months to a 1-year in advance of the volunteer experience.
Virginia Board for People with Disabilities
This website explains the Virginia Youth Leadership Forum. This forum is dedicated to empowering some of Virginia’s disabled students with leadership skills. The Youth Leadership Forum touches on a wide array of vital life skills including but not limited to:
  •  training and development of individual career and life-goals
  •  leadership skills
  •  social skills, and
  •  self-esteem.

Those who have disability, are in their junior or senior year of high school, and are a highly motivated rising star are qualified to apply for the retreat. The website offers much info on how, when, and where to apply. Explains the retreat in full and offers links to other helpful websites that encourage leadership among students with disabilities.

VSA/AFI Discovery Film Apprenticeships 

VSA (International Organization on Arts and Disability) awards apprenticeships to up-in-coming documentary filmmakers with disabilities. The apprenticeships take place at the AFI Discovery Channel SilverDocs Documentary Festival and International Documentary Conference during the summer. The apprenticeship opportunity includes panels, master classes and networking events with professionals in the film industry. Expenses covered by VSA and AFI (American Film Institute) include room, board, airfare and reasonable accommodations associated with the applicant's disability. Interested filmmakers must be 18 to 30 years old, and applications for apprenticeships must be completed online.

This document was published in part under a grant from The HSC Foundation with The George Washington University. No official endorsement by The HSC Foundation or of any product, commodity, service or enterprise mentioned in this publication is intended or should be inferred. 

Permission to use, copy, and distribute this document for non-commercial use and without fee, is hereby granted provided that appropriate credit to the HEATH Resource Center is included in all copies. August 2013.

Last Updated (Friday, 23 August 2013)