The Nonprofit Search Timeline

Students often ask about the timing for applying to an internship/ full time job in the nonprofit sector. Below is a helpful timeline which you can also find on the Nonprofit Page in the Common Good & Creative Careers section of the OCS website. Keep in mind that even if your desired employer does not start recruiting until the spring, there is plenty that you can start on now.

What you can do now: 

1 .Creating a Target List of your ideal Employers

2. Reaching out to Yale Alumni and anyone else in your network to have Informational Interviews. Speaking to people in the field before the jobs are actually posted is ideal!  Start with the Yale Peer Networking Lists.

3. Signing up for Target Emails/Alerts from various job search engines specializing in the nonprofit sector. Some examples are: IdealistGlobal Jobs; 80,000 hours; ImpactOpportunity. This allows you to start learning about different job functions (roles) and industries within the nonprofit sector.

Nonprofit Hiring Timelines
Fall Semester
– Nonprofit Consulting Firms. August/September. (full time and internships)
– Some International Organizations. August – October.  (full time and internships)
– Yale Alumni Community Service Fellowship. November – March.  (internships)

Spring Semester
– President’s Public Service Fellowship. January (internships)
– Gap Year/ Fellowship programs open. Deadlines for these will continue throughout the spring (full time)
– Yale public interest fellowships. February. See Students Grants Database for details. Note: You do not have to have the proposed internship secured in order to request funding
– Nonprofits / Research Organizations / Think Tanks hire on an as need basis. Applications continue throughout spring semester (full time and internships)


By Robyn Acampora
Robyn Acampora Director of Strategic Initiatives and Public Service Careers