Graduate Internship Program


As part of our efforts to expand and strengthen the field of researchers studying relationships and families, the MAST Center’s Graduate Internship Program aims to connect emerging scholars to our work as well as a broader network of researchers and practitioners interested in relationships and families.

Our Graduate Internship Program is open to graduate students in master’s or Ph.D. programs, as well as individuals who completed a master’s program within the last year. The internship is a six-month position from approximately January through June 2023. We seek applicants who demonstrate a strong interest in further developing their research expertise in 1) marriage, romantic relationships, and families; and 2) HMRE program implementation and effectiveness for stepfamilies or LGBTQIA+ populations.

Our team values equity and recognizes that systemic discrimination has negatively impacted the well-being of individuals, families, and communities from groups who are also underrepresented in the research field. As researchers, we aim to be accountable for promoting equity by centering the lived experiences of disabled, socioeconomically disadvantaged, LGBTQIA+, Black, Indigenous, and people of color in our research. We also believe that people who have lived experience in the criminal justice and foster care systems bring important perspectives that are too often missing in research. Hence, we strongly encourage people with these lived experiences and identities to apply.

Child Trends, where the MAST Center is housed, is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Employer, and protected veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply.



Research activities:

MAST Center team members from Child Trends will work with the Interns to develop a work plan that supports ongoing MAST Center research or building capacity activities and that is aligned with the Interns’ skills and interests. This work will contribute to the research knowledge base on 1) marriage, romantic relationships, and families and 2) HMRE program implementation and effectiveness for stepfamilies or LGBTQIA+ populations. Likely internship activities include:

  • An annotated bibliography summarizing research, HMRE program design, and evaluation results focused on stepfamilies or LGBTQIA+ populations to help identify future priorities in those areas.
  • Supporting some building capacity activities, including (1) reviewing resources to be included in the online resource library for HMRE practitioners, evaluators, and researchers, and/or (2) identifying useful resources to be included on the emerging scholars page of the website.

Mentorship: The Interns will be matched with one of the MAST Center’s Child Trends team members who will serve as a mentor. This mentor will meet weekly with the Interns and help to identify the scope of the work/project to be completed by the Interns during the program. The Interns will also receive support from other MAST Center staff, as appropriate, to further support their overall professional development goals. The Interns will have access to other professional development resources offered to staff at Child Trends as well, such as trainings on data visualization, networking, project management, and more.

Networking/Additional Involvement: The Interns will attend the monthly Steering Committee calls of the MAST Center as appropriate. They will share their proposed work plan with the MAST Center Steering Committee at the beginning of the program and a Final Report at the end.

Funding: We will fund two people for the MAST Center Graduate Internship Program in 2023. We estimate that the average time commitment for program related activities will be approximately one day per week for approximately six months (January through June with flexible start/end dates). The Interns will each be paid a rate of $25 per hour and receive up to $4,000 total for the internship period.

Location: Candidates near one of Child Trends’ offices (Bethesda, MD, Minneapolis, MN, or Chapel Hill, NC) will have the option to report to a physical location or work remotely. We are also able to provide a remote internship experience for candidates in some areas (see below for requirements).

Eligibility Requirements

Application Requirements

Selection Criteria


Current Cohort

Past Cohorts

Contact Information and Questions

For additional program information, you can reference the above FAQs about the MAST Center Graduate Internship Program. You may also email [email protected] and [email protected] referencing the “MAST Center Graduate Internship Program” in the subject line. No phone calls please.

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