Trans-Border Institute Internship for Credit Program, Fall 2014

Thursday, August 28, 2014


Whether it’s the drug war, the refugee crisis, or immigration politics, the border has never been more relevant. Get involved! You can help to provide safe haven for someone fleeing violence; you can help to recover the memory and dignity of journalists persecuted for their work; or you can help to reveal the beauty, humanity, and vibrancy of the communities the border shapes. Along the way, you can sharpen your research and writing skills, learn the mechanics of immigration and human rights law, and explore the possibilities for producing and distributing high-end digital content.

The Trans-Border Institute (TBI) at the Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies welcomes applications for undergraduate internships for credit. TBI promotes research, outreach and dialogue on border issues. For the last twenty years, we have been a leading source of expertise on the relationship between the United States and Mexico. Recently, we’ve expanded our portfolio beyond the U.S.-Mexico border and the set of issues “the border” usually implies in order to address the history, reality and aftermath of armed conflicts in Mexico and Central America, and the ways in which they interact with U.S. policies.

Internship Activities
We are looking for interns interested in the following activities:

  • Assembling expert testimony for asylum cases involving people fleeing violence in Mexico and Central America
  • Compiling, translating, and contextualizing the work of at-risk and persecuted journalists
  • Designing, curating, and organizing a week-long film festival focused on border issues
  • Uncovering the legal cases and telling the stories of foreign nationals sentenced to death in California

For further information, please refer to our website or our Facebook page.

Course Credit
This internship is designed to fulfill the requirements of ANTHRO, POLS, HIST, and SOCI 498 (internships for credit). TBI interns will receive structured training in our research methods; contribute to our ongoing research projects; and gain valuable mentoring from the TBI director and staff. They will contribute a minimum of 120 hours of fieldwork (including research, training, and attending TBI events for a minimum of 5 hours per week throughout the semester), in order to receive 3 units of credit. For Fall Semester 2014, all interns will complete 3 units of credit, no more and no less.

Internship Requirements
All of our interns will be required to do the following:

  • Attend four training sessions:
    - September 4 – Information Session: What Does a Peace and Justice Approach to the Border Mean?
    - September 15 – Well-Founded Fear: Understanding U.S. Immigration and Refugee Law
    - September 25 – Documenting Human Rights: Research Methods for Expert Testimony
    - October 4 – Human Fragments: Telling Stories and Using Images to Promote Peace and Justice
  • Complete 120 hours of research and training (to receive 3 units of credit), including a minimum of 5 hours per week for the duration of the semester.
  • Develop and implement an individual research plan, by October 1.
  • Make a public presentation of your individual research project, by December 12.
  • Submit a final research report for dissemination on the TBI website by December 19.

Application Procedures
Please submit a single PDF document, via email to , by 5:00 p.m. PST, on Friday, September 12, 2014. Your document must include:

  •   A cover letter explaining your current major and background (1 page max)
  •   A current c.v. or resume (1 page max)
  •   A brief proposal for an individual research project you would like to undertake at TBI (see below)
  •   A footer with your name, preferred email address, and page number on all pages

Please make sure that your proposal meets the following standards:

  •   Length – It should be 750-1,000 words, single spaced, 12 pt. font.
  •   Goals – Include specific goals you hope to achieve this semester.
  •   Title – Give your project an original title, and indicate which one of TBI’s “internship activities” listed above best addresses it.
  •   Argument – This is an initial proposal, and we know that it will be somewhat speculative, but we want you to practice making an argument for what question or problem your work will address, and why you think it’s important.

*Due date: Friday, September 12, 2014, by 5:00 p.m. PST, submitted electronically to

We will notify applicants of our acceptance decisions by Friday, September 19, 2014.


Martha Garcia
(619) 260-4148

Joan B. Kroc School of Peace Studies


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Phone: (619) 260-7919
Fax: (619) 849-8123


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5998 Alcalá Park
San Diego, CA 92110