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The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) is the nation's largest Muslim civil rights organization. The organization's mission is to enhance understanding of Islam, encourage dialogue, protect civil liberties, empower American Muslims and build coalitions that promote justice and mutual understanding.

Internships at CAIR-Chicago offer students and activists a great opportunity to learn, interact, and grow in a friendly and diverse environment.

CLICK HERE to read about some of our previous interns.




    TIMELINE

    Internships Now Available!


    CAIR-Chicago is currently offering numerous internship opportunities for Spring and Summer. Please note, each of the positions, generally run between the following months:

          Fall: September - December
          Winter: December - February
          Spring: January - May
          Summer: May - September


    Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The following deadline dates are recommended, and applications received by these dates will be given priority:

          Fall: August 20
          Winter: December 1
          Spring: January 7
          Summer: June 15


    All internships and externships are unpaid. Positions require a minimum 12-hour/week commitment.



    APPLICATION GUIDELINES

    • Applicants should email a resume and cover letter to Gerald Hankerson, Outreach Coordinator, at: internships@cairchicago.org or externships@cairchicago.org if you are at least a graduate student.


    • Applicants must clearly indicate which internship position is being applyied for in a cover letter. Applications that do not state specific internship positions may not be processed.


    • Students interested in receiving class credit should indicate so in their cover letters. Credit may be arranged during the first week of the academic term.


    If you have any questions, please email all inquiries to internships@cairchicago.org, or to externships@cairchicago.org if you are at least a graduate student.



    OPPORTUNITIES BY DEPARTMENT


    CIVIL RIGHTS:
    Civil Rights Intern
    Law Clerk (Open to Law Students Only)
    Legal Translator and Intrepreter

    COMMUNICATIONS:
    Communications (general)
    Journalism
    Photo Journalism
    Public Relations
    Graphic Design
    Web Design
    Marketing

    GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS:
    Government Affairs (general)
    Community Organizing
    Civic Engagement
    Policy Research  

    OPERATIONS/ADMINISTRATIVE:
    Operations (general)
    Grant Research
    Database Design
    IT/Networking
    Accounting
    Translator and Interpretor

    OUTREACH:
    Youth Development
    Community Relations
    Public Education
    Human Resources
    Community Service
    Interfaith Engagement



    CIVIL RIGHTS OPPORTUNITIES


    Our Civil Rights Department handles cases that range from prejudiced gestures to full blown discrimination. Our clients are Muslims as well as non-Muslims who have had Islam imputed upon them.

    Interns and Law Clerks may work on any of the following projects:

    Citizenship Delay project - seeks to address the lengthy delays Muslims are facing in applying for citizenship
    Police Misconduct project - addresses incidents where police officers have discriminated or used excessive force against Muslims
    Prison project - secures the rights of Muslim inmates to practice their religion freely, and ensures that inmates are treated humanely
    Airport Profiling project - helps Muslims who have been discriminated against at airports
    Employment Discrimination project - helps Muslims discriminated against based on religion at the workplace.

    CIVIL RIGHTS INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Civil Rights Coordinator and staff attorney on resolving cases of discrimination reported to CAIR-Chicago.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Assist in documenting incidents of religious discrimination by counseling and interviewing complainants regarding their incidents
    • Research laws and policies on employment, student conduct, and immigration procedures, as well as criminal offenses and other areas as seen fit
    • Assist in maintaining the Civil Rights Online Center
    • Updating databases containing information about abuses reported to CAIR-Chicago

    Qualifications:
    • Organized and demonstrate the ability to follow through the various on-going and newly assigned tasks
    • Excellent written communication skills and a commitment to serving the community


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    CIVIL RIGHTS LAW CLERK (Open to Law Students Only)
    Extern will work closely with the Civil Rights Coordinator and Staff Attorney on resolving cases of discrimination reported to CAIR-Chicago. Applicants interested in the Law Clerk Externship should email a resume and cover letter to: externships@cairchicago.org

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Assist in documenting incidents of religious discrimination by counseling and interviewing complainants regarding their incidents
    • Research laws and policies on employment, student conduct, and immigration procedures, as well as criminal offenses and other areas as seen fit
    • Legal writing: drafting arguments, memos and complaints
    • Participate in representing complainants in dispute resolution, EEOC mediation, filing complaints and law suits
    • Assist in maintaining the Civil Rights Online Center
    • Updating databases containing information about abuses reported to CAIR-Chicago

    Qualifications:
    • Organized and demonstrate the ability to follow through the various on-going and newly assigned tasks
    • Excellent written communication skills and a commitment to serving the community


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    LEGAL TRANSLATOR AND INTERPRETER
    The extern will work with the Civil Rights Director and Staff Attorney to translate legal documents and interpret for clientele during counsel or other legal sessions. Applicants interested in the externship should email a resume and cover letter to: externships@cairchicago.org

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Participate in translating for complainants in dispute resolution, EEOC mediation, filing complaints and law suits
    • Translate department documents and communications to clients

    Qualifications:
    • Skilled in reading, writing, and speaking one of the following languages (formal and colloquial): Arabic, Urdu, Spanish, Farsi or other languages spoken by Muslim populations in the greater Chicago area
    • Familiar with legal terminology and functions of the United States judicial system
    • Able to perform consecutive and simultaneous interpretation, and conduct analytical research
    • Proficient with Windows XP and Microsoft Office


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    COMMUNICATIONS OPPORTUNITIES


    Our Communications Department monitors the local media closely and flags coverage of issues relating to Islam and Muslims. The Department also holds Press Conferences and issues press releases, media advisories, and story pitches in order to ensure that Muslim perspectives on pressing issues and current events are represented in the mainstream media.

    COMMUNICATIONS INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator on projects and/or daily tasks per CAIR-Chicago's organizational needs.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Work on pieces that deconstruct sensational and biased coverage of issues pertinent to Muslims and Islam. The purpose is to flag such pieces, to highlight their inaccuracies, and to offer thoughtful analyses that diffuse misconceptions.
    • Students work will be published and featured in a variety of ways:
    a. Published as letters to the editor and as perspective pieces in Chicago's main newspapers such as the Chicago Tribune, Sun Times, Daily Herald, and Daily Southtown, as well as community papers, Final Call and Muslim Journal

    b. Submitted to fourteen community newspapers published by the Southwest News Messenger

    c. Published on the CAIR-Chicago website as well as other well-traversed websites such as Media Monitors (archived by Google)

    d. Featured in the CAIR-Chicago newsletter, "The Chicago Activist"

    The targeted audience of these pieces is the general American public readers of the main Chicagoland newspapers and web surfers. Journalism students preferred.

    • Interns will work on long term research projects assisting with the development of qualitative and quantitative reports, such as the Chicago-Tribune Review, analysis of the Chicago-Tribune's coverage of Islam and Muslims over the year and the Barnes and Nobles Shelf Study, analysis of the proportion of books available on Islam and Muslims.
    • Interns will participate in BLOG Watch, where major BLOGs are monitored and responded to, so as to address inaccuracies and misconceptions about Islam and Muslims.

    Qualifications:
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills
    • Proficient with Windows XP, Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, Explorer
    • Proficient with internet research
    • Experience with general administrative support a plus


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    JOURNALISM INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator on projects and/or daily tasks per CAIR-Chicago's organizational needs.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Writing articles on major events and activities at CAIR-Chicago to be published in the newsletter The Chicago Activist and on the website, www.cairchicago.org
    • Working on content selection and adaptation for newsletter layout and compilation.
    • Monitoring media and writing letters to editor when response is needed
    Qualifications:
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills
    • Research and reporting skills
    • Knowledgeable in the principles of journalism


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    PHOTO JOURNALISM INTERN
    Intern will work with CAIR-Chicago's Executive Director, coordinators, and team members to create visual messaging for web display, campaigns, and presentations

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Provide photo coverage to document CAIR-Chicago's activities and events
    • Coordinate schedule to ensure that events are covered from start to finish
    • Capture proceedings, activities, and event highlights to convey event theme
    • Upload pictures for organization and archiving purposes
    • Take general photographs to portray routine, relevant organizational processes
    • Identify key figure and themes to assist with captioning and photo layout

    Qualifications:
    • must have a flexible schedule to accommodate weekends and evenings
    • access to appropriate equipment preferred
    • a portfolio illustrating previous experience and work desired


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    PUBLIC RELATIONS INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator to represent CAIR-Chicago's work and serve as a resource for media professionals.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Writing press releases and media advisories to inform local media networks of relevant activities
    • Drafting analysis on relevant current affairs
    • Creating content for promotional materials
    • Coordinating the distribution of CAIR-Chicago’s newsletter, The Chicago Activist, as well as pamphlets and other marketing materials


    Qualifications:
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills
    • Proficient with Windows XP, Microsoft Word, Excel, Access, Explorer
    • Able to work independently and under strict time constraints


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    GRAPHIC DESIGN INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator on projects and/or daily tasks per CAIR-Chicago's marketing needs.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Creating images that artistically convey the organization's message
    • Working on layout for the Chicago Activist newsletter
    • Designing cutting edge graphics for marketing material

    Qualifications:
    • proficiency in Photoshop, Adobe InDesign, and Adobe Illustrator
    • a portfolio illustrating previous experience and work desired


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    WEB DESIGN INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator to meet web-design needs, whether creating new websites from scratch or updating existing.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Creating new websites for various organizational projects (anti-hate campaigns, educational initiatives, blogs, etc.)
    • Adding new web pages to existing sites
    • Managing and updating web content


    Qualifications:
    • Excellent web design skills (HTML, CSS, etc.)
    • Content-management knowledge a plus


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    MARKETING INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Communications Coordinator to meet marketing needs, including the production of publications or public ad campaigns.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Creating promotional materials for various events and projects
    • Publicizing CAIR-Chicago events through various media (website, list serves, social networking, etc.)
    • Coordinating the distribution of CAIR-Chicago’s newsletter, The Chicago Activist, as well as pamphlets and other marketing materials


    Qualifications:
    • Excellent written and oral communication skills
    • Proficient with Windows XP, Microsoft Word, and preferably Photoshop and Adobe InDesign
    • Strong organizational and visual skills


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    GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS OPPORTUNITIES


    Our Government Affairs Department seeks to organize, mobilize, and empower Chicagoland's Muslim community with long-term civic participation. Its educational initiatives help community members understand the political system and utilize it to work for their issues. Projects include voter registration drives, community workshops, "know your rights" educational campaigns, and training sessions at mosques and community centers on how to contact and engage local and national politicians. The department also systematically works to educate local political representatives about their Muslim constituents while ultimately engaging these representatives with the Muslim community's unique issues and concerns.

    GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS INTERNSHIP
    Intern will work closely with the Government Affairs Coordinator with projects and/or daily tasks within the scope of CAIR-Chicago's organizational needs.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Updating and maintaining departmental files
    • Contributing written pieces to “The Mobilizer” (the Government Affairs Blogs)
    • Running errands outside of the office as needed
    • Update voter files
    • Occasionally assisting in legislative and/or electoral research

    Qualifications:
    • Working knowledge of Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, and Power Point)
    • Self starter and ability to multitask


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    COMMUNITY ORGANIZING INTERN
    Intern will closely with the Government Affairs Coordinator and Political Organizer to recruit volunteers for 2009 voter mobilization efforts.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Develop comprehensive strategy to recruit volunteers for political campaigns
    • Assist the political organizer in coordinating volunteer activities
    • Develop a comprehensive plan to be used across Muslim communities for political volunteer recruitment
    • Create a centralized database of volunteers to be used in the future

    Qualifications:
    • Be familiar with the Muslim community
    • Have experience in working with mosque leadership
    • Have previous experience in recruiting volunteers/working with large groups of volunteers


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    CIVIC ENGAGEMENT
    Intern(s) will work with the Government Affairs Coordinator to develop creative educational material for the Muslim community.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Develop voter education materials to distribute to the Muslim community
    • Research new civic education materials to be distributed to the community
    • Assist in planning civic duty 101 classes for mosques and local area community centers
    • Assist in establishing communication with elected officials' personnel to obtain information as needed

    Qualifications:
    • Self starter and ability to multitask
    • Proficient in Microsoft Office applications
    • Outgoing and able to communicate with offices of elected officials


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    POLICY RESEARCH INTERN
    Intern will work with the Government Affairs Coordinator to develop CAIR-Chicago's position on all relevant legislation and policies.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Research new legislation relevant to CAIR-Chicago
    • Assist the Government Affairs Coordinator in analyzing current and proposed legislations
    • Developing detailed analysis for internal use
    • Occasionally working with other intern(s) to develop educational materials for the Muslim community

    Qualifications:
    • Strong background in research
    • Strong writing and verbal skills
    • Self starter and ability to multitask


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    OPERATIONS/ADMINISTRATIVE OPPORTUNITIES


    The Operations Department manages a variety of tasks and processes in order to facilitate the maintenance and improvement of daily functions within the organization and its constituent departments. Internally, this includes HR related tasks, updating organizational records and files, corresponding with government offices and vendors, IT support, and directing incoming communication via email and phone to their respective departments. The Operations Department also performs ongoing research and undertakes special projects designed to improve CAIR-Chicago's function and efficiency.

    OPERATIONS INTERN
    Intern will assist the Operations Coordinator with projects and/or daily tasks within the scope of CAIR-Chicago's organizational needs.

    Duties are dependent upon candidate's skill sets and may include the following responsibilities (other duties may be assigned):
    • Audit existing records, files, databases, and web material
    • Provide assistance with a variety of daily and periodical tasks, including donation processing, file organization, and compiling information
    • Create procedure logs to document CAIR-Chicago's procedures and new protocols

    Qualifications:
    • Business and Human Resources majors are encouraged to apply
    • Ideal candidates possess strong problem solving skills and are detail-oriented
    • Proficiency with MS Word and Excel


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    GRANT RESEARCH INTERN
    The intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator and the Grant Coordinator to conduct research on government, organization and foundation grants suitable for CAIR-Chicago.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Research grant-making organizations and programs
    • Create a database with grant information
    • Create an Events Portfolio for all of CAIR-Illinois's past events
    • Maintain Events database and files
    • Assess department projects to seek potential grant qualifications

    Qualifications:
    • Proficient with Windows XP and Microsoft Office
    • Organized, able to multi-task and follow through various on-going and newly assigned tasks
    • Attentive to detail and skilled in oral and written communication as well as problem-solving
    • Able to conduct extensive research


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    DATABASE DESIGN INTERN
    The intern will work closely with the Operations Coordinator to maintain or create effective databases for all CAIR-Chicago needs.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Creating new databases and archives of relevant information to supplement organizational activities and knowledge base
    • Expanding, compiling, and organizing existing databases
    • Designing a systematic database structure to meet organizational needs


    Qualifications:
    • Proficient with Excel, Windows XP, Microsoft Word, Access, Outlook
    • Organized and able to manage large amounts of data


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    IT/NETWORKING INTERN
    The intern will work closely with the Operations Coordinator to meet all IT/Network needs for CAIR-Chicago.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Managing office hardware, updating systems, running virus scans, installing new programs, etc.
    • Repairing office computers and equipment as needed, and troubleshooting IT glitches
    • Expanding office’s IT/network capabilities, developing efficient information processing systems


    Qualifications:
    • In-depth knowledge of computer software management
    • Computer Science background a plus


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    ACCOUNTING INTERN
    The intern will work closely with the Operations Coordinator to meet accounting needs for CAIR-Chicago.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Managing donor databases, accounts, financial reports, and other accounting data and records to support the financial health of the organization


    Qualifications:
    • Strong administrative and management skills
    • Background in accounting and/or related field preferred


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    TRANSLATOR AND INTERPRETER
    The extern will work with each department administrator to translate literature, multimedia and communications for mass distribution. In addition, the extern must attend major functions and events where non-English speakers will be present. Applicants interested in this externship should email a resume and cover letter to: externships@cairchicago.org

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Translate existing literature and written materials
    • Interpret CAIR-Illinois multimedia and news coverage
    • Attend events and conferences to translate presentations for non-English speaking audience members

    Qualifications:
    • Skilled in reading, writing, and speaking one of the following languages (formal and colloquial): Arabic, Urdu, Spanish, Farsi or other languages spoken by Muslim populations in the greater Chicago area
    • Able to perform consecutive and simultaneous interpretation, and conduct thorough, analytical research
    • Proficient with Windows XP and Microsoft Office
    • Friendly and sensible


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    OUTREACH OPPORTUNITIES


    The Outreach Department seeks to forge mutually beneficial partnerships with local and national institutions. It also works to foster an understanding between Chicago's Muslim and non-Muslim communities via educational collaborations. Lastly, it recruits and pairs the right talent (volunteers and interns) with the appropriate CAIR-Chicago projects.

    YOUTH DEVELOPMENT
    Intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator and Youth Coordinator to build and maintain the Muslim Youth Leadership Symposium (MYLS) program.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Plan and help administer two symposiums annually
    • Facilitate post-symposium student project development
    • Secure funding through grants and donations
    • Expand program to reach more students across the greater Chicago region

    Qualifications:
    • Experienced in working with youth, specifically high school students
    • Experienced in event, preferably conference, planning
    • Organized and able to multi-task
    • Able to follow through with the various on-going and newly assigned tasks
    • Skilled in oral and written communications
    • Friendly, outgoing, and possessing leadership skills


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    COMMUNITY RELATIONS INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator on establishing or maintaining relations with Chicago-based organizations on issues that are of CAIR-Chicago's scope.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Research organizations that overlap with CAIR-Chicago in scope
    • Meet with representatives of various organizations in the Chicagoland area
    • Conduct Intro to CAIR-Chicago presentations
    • Maintain appropriate files and databases
    • Maintain Online Partners Page
    • Post events to appropriate websites and list serves
    • Manage the CAIR-Chicago Publicity Committee

    Qualifications:
    • Friendly, outgoing and self-motivated
    • Strong organizational and multi-tasking skills
    • Excellent critical thinking and visual skills
    • Excellent oral and written communications skills
    • Ability to work well under pressure


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    PUBLIC EDUCATION INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator or Cultural Sensitivity Trainer on developing educational material on Islam and Muslims, as well as coordinating and/or conducting presentations on topics relating to Islam.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Create educational material on Islam and Muslims
    • Create a speaker's bureau database on topics relating to Islam
    • Conduct presentations on topics relating to Islam (training provided)
    • Coordinate workshops relating to Islam, as needed

    Qualifications:
    • Organized, multi-tasked and demonstrate the ability to follow through the various on-going and newly assigned tasks
    • Strong problem-solving skills
    • Possess excellent oral and written communications skills as well as the ability to do extensive research
    • Familiar with Excel, Access and Microsoft PowerPoint
    • Ability to integrate graphical software within Power Point presentations
    • Education, Middle Eastern Studies, and Religious Studies majors preferred


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    HUMAN RESOURCES INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator on maintaining both the internship and volunteerism programs of CAIR-Chicago.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Assist in setting up for-credit internships for undergraduate and graduate university students by completing the appropriate paperwork and maintaining the necessary databases
    • Conduct presentations on the importance of volunteerism and discuss existing volunteer opportunities at CAIR-Chicago within the Greater Chicagoland area
    • Direct volunteers and liaisons as needed
    • Plan and coordinate social outings for volunteers
    • Assist in developing CAIR-Chicago volunteer gear
    • Follow-up on new volunteer applications using SmartFTP (training will be provided)
    • Maintain Online Volunteer Center Blackboard (training will be provided)

    Qualifications:
    • Friendly, outgoing, and demonstrate strong leadership skills
    • Self-motivated
    • Excellent oral and written communications skills
    • Detail-oriented and excellent organizational skills


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    COMMUNITY SERVICE INTERN
    Intern will work closely with the Outreach Coordinator on managing the Muslims Care project: a national initiative which promotes volunteerism.

    Essential duties and responsibilities include the following (other duties may be assigned):
    • Plan and coordinate 1-2 community service events per month
    • Work in conjunction with other Chicagoland organizations on monthly community service events
    • Publicize events to CAIR-Chicago constituents
    • Attend events and report back to the Outreach Department

    Qualifications:
    • Friendly, outgoing, and demonstrate strong leadership skills
    • Self-motivated
    • Excellent oral and written communications skills
    • Detail-oriented and excellent organizational skills


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    INTERFAITH ENGAGEMENT INTERN
    Description coming soon.

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