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*Must apply via START's website linked below. Applications submitted via Handshake will NOT be considered.*

ICONS is a unit of the National Consortium for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) at the University of Maryland, College Park. ICONS creates simulations, wargames, and scenario-driven exercises to advance participants' understanding of complex problems and strengthen their ability to make decisions, navigate crises, think strategically, and negotiate collaboratively. ICONS’s web-based simulations for educators place college and high school students from around the globe in challenging online simulation and gaming exercises that allow them to role-play resolving contentious geo-political issues. ICONS also creates customized simulations to support think tanks, cabinet-level agencies, and Department of Defense major commands as they tackle complex national security challenges, and public and private sector organizations as they engage in crisis management training, forecasting, and policy planning. Visit for additional background on ICONS’ work.

ICONS is seeking an upper-level undergraduate or graduate level intern for the Spring 2024 semester. The intern will:

  • Work with the ICONS staff in researching, updating, and potentially contributing to the design of simulations;
  • Learn the ICONS simulation methodology; and
  • Support ICONS client engagement and outreach.

Responsibilities will include, but are not limited to:

  • Contributing to simulation scenario research and updating current simulation content;
  • Contributing to research and design of new simulation content;
  • Engaging in START’s educational enrichment program and speakers’ series;
  • Supporting marketing and outreach initiatives.

Supervisor: Bob Lamb, 

Deadline: Sunday, November 5, 2023, 11:59pm ET

US Citizenship Required: Yes 

Team Meeting Times: Tuesdays at 10am ET 

Required/minimum qualifications:

  • Graduate students or undergraduate seniors and juniors only;
  • Strong English-language communication, research, and persuasive writing skills;
  • Excellent attention to detail and organizational skills;
  • Strong editing skills;
  • Must be in good academic standing;

Preferred/ideal qualifications:

  • Demonstrated academic proficiency or personal experience in one or more of the following:
    • Regional expertise (e.g., East Asia, Arctic, Sub-Saharan Africa, Russia, China, Latin America, etc.);
    • Functional expertise (e.g., cybersecurity, disinformation, climate, democracy, extremism, nuclear, etc.);
    • Technical expertise (e.g., data science, complex system modeling, R, Python, SQL, LLMs, etc.)
    • Journalism, English, Cultural Studies, or History
  • Experience with ICONS simulations, wargaming, red-teaming, serious games, game design, LARP, or similar;
  • Previous administrative or office experience


General Information for all START Internships


START is headquartered at the University of Maryland, College Park, all internships are in person.

Schedule Requirements:

Orientation Date: Thursday, January 18, 2024. All interns are required to attend orientation. You may be required to attend an additional day of orientation on Friday, January 19, 2024. Your supervisor will inform you if you are required to attend both days.
Internship Duration: Thursday, January 18, 2024 to Friday, May 3, 2024. All interns must be able to commit to the duration of the whole program.
Work Hours: All interns must work at least 10 hours per week during the spring 2024 program. Work hours are scheduled from Monday to Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm. Interns may not work longer than 8-hour or shorter than 2 hour shifts.

Conditions of Employment:

The University of Maryland has made the safety of our students, faculty and staff, and our surrounding communities a top priority. As part of that commitment, the University System of Maryland (USM) recently announced that students, faculty, and staff on USM campuses, including UMD, are required to be vaccinated against COVID. Accepted interns will be required to comply with the University's vaccination protocol or to request and be approved for a medical or religious exemption in order to work at any University of Maryland location.  Internship offers are contingent upon admitted candidates providing proof of full vaccination or obtaining approval for a medical or religious exemption.

Intern offers are contingent on completion of a background check.  A prior criminal conviction or convictions will not automatically disqualify a finalist from employment. Prior to any adverse decision, individuals will have an opportunity to provide information to the University regarding their background check. Individuals will also be provided an opportunity to appeal any decision prior to a final outcome.

Additionally, accepted interns will be required to complete an I-9 Employment Eligibility Authorization, which may require in-person delivery. Lastly, accepted interns will be required to complete a Federal W4, State W4, and Direct Deposit forms. Non-U.S. Citizens will have additional tax/payroll paperwork to complete. The inability to complete any of these documents or processes may result in the internship offer being rescinded.

Other Information:

  • All internships include a stipend of $2,250 for the fall and spring semesters, and $3,000 for the summer term.
  • The University of Maryland has several opportunities for students to apply for other internship stipends. Please note that START is not involved in the application or review process for these stipends, with the exception of the Paul Gallo Memorial Scholarship for Non-Traditional Student Interns. Non-UMD students are encouraged to check with their home institutions for other stipend opportunities.
  • We strongly encourage and recommend that interns seek academic credit for their internship through their home institution or department, if possible.
  • If undertaking the internship for credit, please indicate this on your application form. Be sure to notify your internship supervisor if you need to work more than 10 hours per week for this reason.
  • Applicants interested in applying for an internship for any semester other than or in addition to spring 2024 must submit a separate application for each semester with the correct application form for that semester.

How to Apply for START Internships:

START is currently accepting applications for the spring 2024 semester. Please make sure you check the dates for the project you’re interested in to make sure they’re available during the semester you intend to apply. The spring 2024 application form will be open until 11:59pm ET on Sunday, November 5, 2023. Late, incomplete, or applications not submitted correctly will not be considered. To access the application: click here.


  • Due to the high volume of applications, only top candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.
  • All internships include a stipend of $2,250 for the fall and spring semesters, and $3,000 for the summer term.
  • Applicants must pay close attention to the requirement of the internship they are applying for, including attendance to team meetings and the minimum time commitment. Inability to attend compulsory meetings or work the minimum required hours will result in rescinding of offer.
  • Applicants who identify two additional internship projects of interest may be considered for those projects if they are not selected for the project in which they are applying.
  • Any successful applicant will be asked to respond with a firm acceptance within 48 hours of the offer being made. Failure to respond could result in your place being given to another applicant.
  • Failure to complete this form in full or submit the proper materials according to the directions provided above could result in your application being rejected without further consideration.
  • All interns must attend START Intern Orientation.
  • All interns must be able to participate in the internship program for the duration of the program/semester dates.
  • Questions about specific internships, their requirements or subject matter should be directed to the supervisor contact listed for each project on the START internship web page.

If you have difficulty submitting your application or have questions about your application status, please contact us at To request an ASL interpreter or other accommodations, please email

Application Materials:

All internship applicants must submit all materials in one .pdf file using the file name format:

LastName, FirstName_InternCandidate.pdf or .doc.

 The internship application packet should include the following documents in the following order:

  • One page cover letter
  • One page resume
  • Official or unofficial transcript(s)

Note for International Students:

START welcomes applications from international students for all of our internships where US citizenship is not a requirement (see the qualifications listed for each project for details).

It is, however, the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that their visa or immigration status permits them to undertake a paid internship. It is also the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all proper paperwork, like documented approval from your home institution, is available and processed in time for the start of the internship. Failure to comply with these stipulations, or provide the paperwork required to verify your status, will result in your internship offer being rescinded without further consideration. START is unable to sponsor visas for non-US Citizens due to the short timeline of our program and the lengthy processing time for visas. Unfortunately, this largely limits our ability to accept anything other than F-1 visas on regular, not OPT, status.