Internships at North River Commission

Build your skills at North River Commission with a hands-on, high impact, and high responsibility internship.

North River Commission is the nonprofit community and economic development corporation for the Northwest Side of Chicago, from the Chicago River to Cicero and Addison to Devon. Founded in 1962 by concerned residents and neighborhood institutions, North River Commission unites over 100 civic associations, businesses, schools, institutions and places of worship.

Mission: To improve the quality of life in our community by developing affordable housing, quality education, environmental sustainability, open spaces, arts & cultural endeavors, and thriving neighborhood businesses.


Interns have the opportunity to work within one or more program areas: a) community development, b) economic development, c) planning, d) affordable housing, e) education, f) environment, and g) arts & culture

Typically, North River Commission has 2-5 interns at a time. Internships are either by semester, Fall, Spring and Summer, or by project.

  1. Semester interns can serve for one or more semesters and will agree on a weekly work schedule with their staff lead.
  2. Project interns will establish a plan including duration and deliverables with the lead staff for that project.

Brief Descriptions for Current Intern Positions

Communications: Media Relations

  • assistance in crafting North River Commission's story of community work and stakeholders
  • acquiring media coverage for our stories
  • strategizing on how best to utilize communication tools

Communications: Social Media

  • publish to website, facebook, twitter, and email updates to communicate with stakeholders and the public
  • building out and maintaining the NRC website on NeonCRM
  • strategizing on how best to utilize communication tools and crafting our story

Communications: Video Storytelling

  • produce video stories about NRC impact in the community and stakeholders
  • strategize on how best to utilize video stories for different audiences and purposes

Economic Development

  • consultations with business owners regarding growth and assistance
  • research development projects including outreach to elected officials, city departments, and developers
  • outreach and research on retail rental availability and rates, pre-development for specific parcels
  • assist community organizer with research, outreach, meeting facilitation, and follow-up to community groups, government agencies, and local institutions involved in environmental work
  • research ongoing and upcoming environmental initiatives that overlap with NRC’s mission and service area
  • assist with facilitating local volunteer stewardship and recreation opportunities
Arts & Culture
  • assist organizer with research, outreach, meeting facilitation, and follow-up to local artists, community groups, organizations, and institutions involved in arts and cultural work
  • assist with publishing a monthly arts and cultural newsletter
  • assist with creating and managing arts and cultural events with local partners


  • Assist Education Coordination in supporting youth council, including recruiting, facilitating meetings, and project development and implementation
  • Organize to empower Local School Councils in improving education at local CPS schools
  • Assist Education Committee with promotion of neighborhood schools

Community Planning

  • assist Executive Director with all aspects of community engagement
  • strategize meetings large and small on areas of interest
  • conduct visioning and planning with staff, volunteers and community stakeholders

Affordable Housing

  • outreach to area landlords to inform them of energy efficiency programs to help preserve existing affordable units
  • update apartment vacancy database and research other affordable housing programs for local landlords
  • tenant relations with low-income seniors at Mayfair Commons and building staff


Hours per week

  • Summer Semester: 16 hours/week minimum, 7 weeks or more
  • Fall and Spring Semesters: 8 hours/week minimum, 10 weeks or more per semester
  • Project based internships: 8 hours/week minimum, 4 weeks or more

Grade Levels

  • Interns should be current students in college, graduate school, or high school
  • Recent graduates will also be considered

Selection Process

North River Commission partners with area colleges and high schools, as well as internship programs. Individuals can contact us directly, starting with the Internship Interest form. Click here. Fill in the basic contact information and send a resume to Thomas Applegate, Executive Director: thomasapplegate<at> Thomas or another staff will contact you.

Project internships will be posted with an application deadline

Selection of semester internships are made on a rolling basis until internships are filled. We recommend the following dates as guides. We encourage you to let us know about your interest, even when a date below has passed.

  • Summer: contact us after February 1st and before April 1st
  • Fall: contact us before August 15th
  • Spring: contact us  before November 15th

Get Started

Give us basic contact information, what you're interested in, and a current resume to get started. We will contact you soon about your interest. Thank you.

Go to the Google form, Internship Interests