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Internship North American Studies (optional)


Admission requirements

Students are eligible to do an internship 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 Service 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, NOS News Washington, DC, Volkenkunde Museum in Leiden, and the Aids Foundation in Amsterdam.

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. wrote a research report on 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 staff member within the North American Studies department 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 program.

Since a research project is a crucial aspect of the internship, students are required to follow the following procedure:

Before the internship begins:

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

  1. a work schedule: what are your tasks, when and where?
  2. a research proposal on a topic relevant both to the Internship Organization and the MA North American Studies including 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);
  2. 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

Total course load 10 EC x 28 hours 280 hours:

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

  • Preparation: drafting proposal: ca. 20 hours;

  • Tutoring: interaction with local and Leiden supervisors about progress and research: ca. 20 hours;

  • Assignment(s): researching and writing final report: ca. 50 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 research report (50%).


Local supervisor’s report (50%) and student’s final research report (50%).


Not applicable.

Exam Review

Not applicable


Registration in uSis will be done by the student administration.


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.


NAS students who have found an internship in the U.S. or Canada (North America) can apply for multiple grants, including, but not limited to the Sustainable Humanities Internship Fund and the Leiden University Fund (LUF).


Mw. Drs. E.C. (Els) Munter (Coördinator of Studies).
Mw. Dr. J.C. (Joke) Kardux (Chair MA North American Studies).