A guide to what college rankings don't tell you.

WWTL Internship

The American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) seeks accomplished, high-energy undergraduate, graduate, and professional students with excellent research, writing, and communication abilities to apply for fall, spring, and summer internships.

All fellows and summer interns participate in a special series of seminars with ACTA staff and board members. Past seminar speakers have included Dr. Bruce Cole, former chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities; Dr. Frederick M. Hess, director of education policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute; Ross Douthat, opinion editorial columnist for the New York Times; Dr. Richard K. Vedder, distinguished professor emeritus of economics at Ohio University; Arthur Rothkopf, president emeritus of Lafayette College; Stephen Joel Trachtenberg, president emeritus of The George Washington University; and Greg Lukianoff, president and CEO of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education.


  • Performing extensive curricular research on colleges and universities for the What Will They Learn?® project
  • As appropriate, performing duties related to other ACTA research projects
  • Assisting the Program Manager for Curricular Improvement with preparation of the online guide (WhatWillTheyLearn.com).
  • When time permits, writing for ACTA outreach efforts such as the ACTA newsletter, Inside Academe, or pieces for ACTA’s blog, The Forum.

Alumni of the internship program have returned to work at ACTA, and have gone on to work at other Washington-area policy organizations.

Application Requirements

ACTA will hire on a rolling basis. Applications will be reviewed for both fall, spring, and summer internships until all positions are filled.

To apply for any internship or fellowship, please email, in one PDF file:

  1. Your resume and transcript. (An unofficial transcript will suffice.)
  2. A letter of recommendation from someone who has taught you and can comment on your academic and analytic abilities and promise. (A letter from another individual may supplement, but not replace, this letter.)
  3. A cover letter explaining why the internship or fellowship is of interest to you and why you should be selected for it.

All applications and questions should be directed to info@GoACTA.org.

Benjamin Franklin’s autobiography, Robinson Crusoe, and The Arabian Nights were just some of the texts that influenced President Abraham Lincoln. Lincoln, however, did not attend college, but for some students, college is the only place they will be exposed to the world's greatest authors. For those who graduate with a firm foundation in the liberal arts, the opportunities for success are endless.

— Nathaniel Urban, Program Manager, What Will They Learn?®

The amount of autonomy and ownership over one's work given at ACTA is unparalleled in other internships. This is not a "coffee and copy machine" type of position, but one that gives you direct responsibilities and the opportunity to connect with one of the most knowledgeable and passionate staffs in Washington, DC.

— Caroline Toth, ACTA Intern from 2017-2019