Princeton Internships in Civic Service


Volunteer and Make a Difference in the Lives of Princeton Undergraduates

  • Become an Alumni Partner with a current Undergraduate
  • Organize summer programming in one of our cohort cities
  • Source an internship at a nonprofit civic service organization

Alumni Partners Make all the Difference!

Partnering is one of the most important aspects of the PICS program. Princeton alumni and alumni spouses volunteer to be Alumni Partners act as a friendly contact point and source of information for the Princeton student intern, and as liaison, if needed, to the sponsor organization. The Alumni Partner’s presence and availability enhance the summer experience for the intern. Share your professional and life experiences, as well as help guide a young student often experiencing their first professional opportunity. PICS provides interns with a leadership and professional development seminar, peer support and professional coaching, but Alumni Partners provide them with advice on life and leadership skills in the professional world, as well as introducing them to the life-long networking benefits of being a Princeton graduate. Alumni Partners are friends, listeners, guides, and advocates to young Princetonians. But it is not all a one way street; many Alumni Partners form long term mentoring relationships with their interns that go on for years after the internship is just a memory!

Partner Responsibilities

  • To initiate contact with the intern.
  • To be responsive and available to be contacted by the intern during the internship period.
  • To act as liaison, if necessary, to the sponsor organization of the internship.

“In my years (now 7) of serving students with whom I have had the privilege to work have inspired me, made me a better, more thoughtful, more giving person, and have opened my eyes and helped me to see the world in ways I would not have been able to see the world without their intervention. I’m grateful every day to PICS –and to my PICS partner-students – for being a part of my life!”

— ALUMNI PARTNER: Sue McSorley ’77

“I feel very fortunate to have been a part of the PICS internship program over the past several years. Being able to serve as a mentor to Princeton students interning in the non-profit world in New York City has not only been educational but also very rewarding. I have really enjoyed getting to know each mentee and learning more about their internship experiences as well as their aspirations and goals in life. Each mentee’s motivation and dedication to learning has been very impressive. The opportunity to be not only a mentor but also a friend to each of these students has been invaluable. And these friendships that I have built over the years will certainly last a lifetime. I am very thankful for the opportunity to be a part of such an important program.”

— ALUMNI PARTNER: Katie Kuga Werner ’04

“Cathy and I have truly enjoyed serving as PICS alumni partners for the 7 interns who now have worked with the folks at BHCHP. We have tried to ensure that each intern has had a stimulating experience each summer, which has given us an excuse to meet each intern relatively early in the internship, and to have a dinner or two as the internship progressed. We also have arranged for each intern to make a formal presentation to BHCHP’s leadership and the other staff with whom each intern has worked, at which each intern described the summer’s experiences, and what the intern learned or otherwise gained from the internship. As we typically attend that presentation, we have been able to better coordinate with the folks at BHCHP to improve the quality of the internship over time. This has in turn led to an increasingly sophisticated set of assignments for the interns, as BHCHP came to understand fully what a PICS intern can achieve. Not only have we learned a great deal about the issues confronting the homeless and the folks at BHCHP caring for them, but we have experienced a stronger connection to Princeton and its undergraduates. Cathy and I often reflect together upon the many insights we have gained from serving in this role over the years, and how much younger in outlook (although perhaps not in body) we are as a result.”

— ALUMNI PARTNERS: Chris Milton ’69 & Cathy Milton S’69

PICS Interns Value your Mentorship!

What interns say about their mentors:

“Henry is awesome! The alumni partner component was one of the best components of the PICS program. I appreciated that Henry was genuinely interested in learning about me and my work experience, and since he was a former PICS intern and class of 2010, it was easy and enjoyable to talk to and relate to him. I rate Henry a 5 star alumni partner. A+.”

— Serena Zheng ’17 Naturebridge intern and Henry Barmeier ’10, former PICS intern and alumni partner.

“My alumni partner, Paul Haaga, was amazing. He is one of the most generous people I know and as a board member of My Friend’s Place along with the many other philanthropic activities he partakes in, he had a grasp on the organizations and their goals. Through Paul I was able to see a Dodger’s game and a Hollywood Bowl concert as well as hearing old Princeton stories which I loved. It was great to have him there and I knew he would happy to answer any questions I had.”

— Ariel Becker’17, My Friend’s Place with Paul Haaga ’70 and Los Angeles area PICS interns

PICS Summer Internship Lead City Coordinator

PICS interns value the opportunity to interact with the Princeton alumni network. Lead City Coordinators:

  • Help PICS staff organize a professional networking event or speaker panel opportunity in the cohort cities where they live.
  • Work with PICS staff to identify leaders and topics to engage young interns in networking and career development conversations with thought-leaders actively engaged in their field of interest.

While PICS interns are located throughout the United States and abroad, our current cohort cities are New York, Boston, Washington, D.C., Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Miami.

SPEAKER PANEL: “A View of the Legal System”

With U.S. Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollak '75

With U.S. Magistrate Judge Cheryl Pollak ’75

SPEAKER PANEL: “A Sharp Knife and a Steady Hand – Perspectives on Leadership”

Dr. Laura Forese '83, EVP and Chief Operating Officer of New York-Presbyterian

With Dr. Laura Forese ’83, EVP and Chief Operating Officer of New York-Presbyterian

SPEAKER PANEL: “Education in America Today: Unique Approaches to Bridging the Gap”

Education in American Today Speaker Panel

With Andrew Balson ’88, Chief Executive Officer, Match Beyond; Jennifer Price ’94, Superintendent, North Andover Public Schools; Christopher Looney ’02, Counsel, WilmerHale; Moderated by Anu Pattabiraman ‘10

Source an Internship at a Nonprofit

Mike Gummeson ’78 with interns and fellow alumni partner Nina Lightdale ’94

Mike Gummeson ’78 with interns and fellow alumni partner Nina Lightdale ’94

“Sponsoring a PICS student has been one of the most rewarding things I have done. It enables me to make a donation that supports both a Princeton student that I am able to make a personal connection with, as well as a cause that I believe strongly in. I find this far more rewarding than making a “blind” charitable donation.”

— Mike Gummeson’78

PICS welcomes alumni volunteers interested in becoming an Alumni Partner to a PICS intern, a summer internship lead city coordinator, and/or internship source. Please complete this short form to join us or contact with any questions.