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Internship North American Studies (optional)


Admission requirements

Students are eligible to do an internment in their second or third semester provided they have finished at least 30 ec in course work.


The MA in North American Studies offers students the possibility to exchange one elective course for an internship, in the U.S., the Netherlands, or elsewhere. An internship is an excellent way of getting work experience in an organization, institution, business or museum. An internship in the U.S. or elsewhere abroad gives you international experience and will help you practice your English language skills, both of which can enhance your perspectives on the job market. Students need to find an internship themselves, but the Humanities Career Center website and staff can provide help. In the past three years Leiden North American Studies students have had internships with, for example, Springer Publishing Company in India, the Dutch embassies in Washington and Bangkok, the Dutch Consulate in New York, the oral history project Voice of Witness in California, and Volkenkunde Museum in Leiden.

If you want to do the internship within the curriculum (10 EC), it has to include a research project. For example, students interning at the Dutch Consulate and Embassy in the U.S. researched the use of social media in public diplomacy.
An internship can also be extracurricular, in which case the credits will be added to the regular 40 EC course credits on the diploma supplement. Note that extracurricular internships do not count towards the weighted average.

Internships are supervised by a teacher affiliated with the MA North American Studies and by a supervisor within the host institution. Students are free to choose their own host institution, but need final approval by the Board of Examiners of the MA.

Since a research project is a crucial aspect of the internship, students are required to:
Before the internship begins:

  • submit an internship proposal (approx. 1200 words) including:

    • a work schedule: what are your tasks, when and where?
    • a research proposal on a topic relevant both to the Internship Organization and the MA North American Studies including the following: an abstract, a research question, methodology, plan, and initial bibliography.
      During the internship:
  • submit short monthly reports by email to your Leiden internship supervisor.
    At the end of the internship:

  • submit a report consisting of two parts:

      1. on your work as an intern at the host institution (stageverslag, ca. 2,000 words);
      1. on your research project (onderzoeksverslag, ca. 4,000 words, including a bibliography).

When approved by both supervisors, the staff at the Humanities Career Service will submit your proposal to the Board of Examiners. The final report has to be submitted to both supervisors.

Course Load

  • preparation and drafting proposal: ca. 30 hours;

  • interaction with local and Leiden supervisors: ca. 20 hours;

  • internship and research project: ca. 600-800 hours (depending on the length 4-6 months);

  • writing final report: ca. 30 hours.

Note: The maximum number of credits a student can get for an internship is 10 ec.

Assessment method

Final assessment is based on the report by the local supervisor of the work you carried out during your internship (50%) and on your final report (50%).


Not applicable.


When considering an internship, always first contact the Humanities Career Service in Lipsius (Studiepunt). The staff there can inform and help you and it has a considerable number of internship vacancies, in the Netherlands and abroad. Please first consult the website.
Internship vacancies are also regularly posted on the Leiden American Studies LinkedIn page. The Internationalization Office can inform you on the grants* available for an internship abroad.


*Grants are only available to students who are doing an internship in a country directly related to their studies (in the case of North American Studies, the United States).


Mw. Drs. T.H.M. (Thea) de Jong (Coordinator of Studies)
Mw. Dr. J.C. (Joke) Kardux (Coordinator)