2024 internship opportunities in Estonia and Latvia

The Global Studies Internship Program offers placements at Vabamu Museum of Occupations and Freedom (Estonia),  the Johan Skytte Institute of Political Studies (University of Tartu, Estonia), TechHub Riga (Latvia), NATO Cooperative Cyber Defence Centre of Excellence (CCDCOE) in Estonia, Riga Stradiņš University’s China Studies Centre in Latvia, and The Baltic Security Foundation in Latvia. Each of these organizations has experience in hosting Stanford interns and is looking forward to working with the students again.

This year, the program also launches a new internship opportunity at the FinEst Centre for Smart Cities (Tallinn University of Technology). The FinEst Centre for Smart Cities is an international research and development center, driven by passion to enhance the quality of life in urban areas. The intern is expected to join the continuous process of matching long-term city challenges (e.g. urbanization, climate change) with ideas on how to solve them in the urban environment via research and innovation actions (pilots). If successful, those pilots aim to transform European cities of becoming climate-neutral and smart by 2030.

When chosen for an internship in the Baltics, students can participate in a program of events and activities organized by Vabamu. For example, in the summer of 2023, the interns visited museums and governmental agencies in Tallinn, Riga, and Tartu, attended the Estonian Song Festival, met with local diplomats and U.S. Embassy staff, learned how to cook local food, participated in startup events and even went canoeing in South Estonia.

More information about the 2024 internship opportunities can be found on the Stanford Global Studies webpage. The deadline to apply for the internships is January 28, 2024.


CCDCOE, 2023

My Baltic internship at CCDCOE in Estonia this summer has been an extraordinary experience that I will cherish forever. As an intern at CCDCOE, I’ve had the privilege of immersing myself in cutting-edge cyber defense projects while also collaborating with brilliant minds from around the world. Beyond the work, Estonia’s welcoming atmosphere made exploring the country’s history and culture a joy. From walking through the Kumu to watching Nublu perform twice, I’ve loved every moment here. Living and working in Estonia has not only equipped me with a clear understanding of cyber defense but has also given me a profound appreciation for the country’s unique blend of innovation and tradition. This summer has undeniably been a transformative period in both my professional growth and personal experiences — I could not be more thankful for this experience!

Riga Stradins University, 2023

I had never been to the Baltics before this summer, and knew very little about the rich culture and history of this area; I knew where Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania were by remembering that they went North to South in alphabetical order for geography exams in history class and that was all. I have loved living in Riga and exploring the city with my Stanford flatmates, and immersing myself in a country that feels youthful, vibrant and optimistic as it emerges from its Soviet past, and fiercely celebrates its language and national identity. My internship has been a great experience, and I have learned so much and been given so many amazing opportunities. I am sad that my internship is coming to an end, and I know that Riga will always be a special place to me.

TechHub Riga, 2023

In the radiant summer of 2023, I found myself immersed in the cultural vibrancy and technological dynamism of Riga, Latvia. As a product development intern at HackMotion, an experience that was nothing short of exceptional awaited me. I was entrusted with remarkable responsibilities, plunging headfirst into the world of app and product analytics to generate reports for user testing. My creative potential was also tapped as I contributed to the design of intuitive UX/UI solutions, a significant one being the transition of the app from landscape to portrait mode. This summer in Riga has been an amalgamation of experiences – exciting work, travel adventures, and cultural exchange – that have indelibly imprinted on my memory. I will cherish the recollections of this enchanting summer for the rest of my life.

Baltic Security Foundation, 2023

Spending the summer in Riga has allowed me to build connections and explore international relations from a new perspective that will forever impact my academic and career goals. I’m so thankful to have gotten this chance to expand my experience beyond the Stanford campus!

ICDS, 2023

I’ve loved getting to know the Baltic states! As someone from Ukraine, it was striking to me how many similar perspectives we share and I felt very connected to the Estonian people. I was especially inspired by the Baltic states’ struggles for freedom and independence, one that is very parallel to Ukraine’s. There are lots of lessons to be learned from their experiences and applied back home. I’ve learned a lot about nationhood, politics, freedom, security, and more and am walking away with lots of ideas of how to make my own community stronger.

HackMotion, 2022

It was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Not only was I able to gain valuable skills in my internship that I’m sure will benefit me in my career path, but I was also able to spend a summer in a beautiful area of the world that probably would have never known much about otherwise.

Skytte Institute, 2022

My time in Estonia was incredible. Estonia is a beautiful country with unique people and a rich history. If you have never been before, you will be greeted by beautiful green scenery with stunning, historical architecture. My work at the University of Tartu was engaging, thoughtful, diverse, and unique. I was able to learn from individuals with different backgrounds and use that to inform my work. Internships in the Baltics are an invaluable opportunity to not only expand your professional skills, but also, a unique chance for personal development and cultural immersion.

Vabamu, 2023

Working in Estonia was a great way for me to reconnect with my Baltic identity and to learn how to live on my own. I loved my internship at Vabamu: I took part in exciting projects, learned from my coworkers, and had the flexibility to tailor the experience to my interests. Exploring Tallinn and the surrounding cities was incredibly fun and enriching– eight weeks just flew by! I’ll be sure to return as there is still so much left that I would like to do.

Skytte Institute, 2022

This summer was an opportunity for me to learn more about a part of the region of my studies that is, regrettably, often overlooked. Having this opportunity to work at the University of Tartu for the summer made me realize what a great injustice my field of studies does to Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania. I expected to find a post-Soviet country like the many others I had the chance to visit and live in. I was very surprised to find instead a young, dynamic, developed nation, which was proud of its identity and individuality.

Tehnopol, 2022

It was one of the most enriching 3 months of my life. All of a sudden, I was dropped into a foreign country, on my own, and not only had to live like an adult, but I had to adapt to the way of life there. The internship itself was not the only valuable thing about this experience – the people, the weekend excursions, and practicing a foreign language all contributed to my uninterrupted sense of joy this summer.

E- residency, 2022

It was such an incredible experience to work in a new culture and learn from such a diverse group of individuals with varying backgrounds. My favorite memory from e-Residency was our team bonding trip to the countryside, where we went canoeing in a bog in Paide, Estonia! I am so grateful to have this experience and love sharing it with my friends and family

Tehnopol, 2023

Tallinn is for anyone up to experience medieval, post-Soviet, digital utopia all at once – many worlds in this cozy corner of the Baltics. My team at Tehnopol was truly one of a kind – considerate, fun, forward thinking and with the best recommendations! Our work has been invaluable to my understanding of startups, acceleration and innovation policy in Europe.

Vabamu, 2023

I absolutely loved my summer in Estonia. I didn’t know what to expect coming in, but after exploring Tallinn I fell in love with the beautiful Old Town, the fascinating history, and the vibrant city. I grew exponentially while living abroad this summer and I am leaving with so much knowledge about the history and politics of the Baltics. Working at Vabamu was an incredible experience — being able to further the museum’s crucial mission while learning about museum collections, exhibitions, and visitor engagement has only increased my desire to pursue a future in museum work. A highlight of my internship was working for a week as a mentor at Hüppelaud, a hackathon for Estonian youth. I am so grateful for the opportunity to spend my summer in Estonia and can’t wait for my next trip back to the Baltics one day!

CCDCOE, 2023

I’ve really enjoyed my summer experience in the Baltics! Working with the NATO CCDCOE has given me incredible first hand knowledge and insight into a really exciting subfield of international security (cyber and cyber defense), and I’ve had the opportunity to interact with leaders and top researchers in the field on a daily basis. I am appreciative of the individual attention I’ve received, and I’ve learned so much about the technical and policy side of cyber defense. I definitely see myself returning to the Baltics in the future. It is the ideal place to be for a career in international security and cyber, which is something I could see myself doing in the long-term. 

I’ve also enjoyed the cultural education received from the Vabamu trips and programming. Learning about the history, the food, the government, and the contemporary issues facing the region gave me a greater understanding of the culture I am living in, as well as an appreciation for the resilience of the Baltic people.

Skytte Institute, 2023

My time in Estonia has been such a formative experience for me. I have gotten to speak to individuals who are kind, interesting, and share their own experiences to further introduce me to this dynamic country. It has offered the feeling of a tight night community while also having beautiful nature and really interesting cities. I recommend anyone who has an interest in this area to come and see it for yourself! 

Stanford interns talk about their summer in Estonia

Lily and Elsa worked at Vabamu during the summer of 2023. They both had a great time in the Baltics and are recommending the internship to everyone.

Arya Marwaha shares his experience in Latvia

Arya completed an internship at HackMotion, a startup in the sports wearable technology industry. Read more about Arya’s internship experience in the Q&A at Stanford website.