Education Program Summer Fellowship Opportunity at the Right Question Institute

Position Type: Education Program Summer Fellow – The Right Question Institute

Would you like the opportunity to contribute meaningfully to a successful nonprofit working on innovative strategies in the field of education? If so, the Right Question Institute (RQI), an education nonprofit in Cambridge, MA, is offering a limited number of fellowship positions for summer 2018 for students eager to work hard, learn a lot, and contribute to our efforts.

Organization Overview:

The Right Question Institute (RQI), an education nonprofit in Cambridge, MA, strives to make democracy work better by ensuring that all people can learn to ask better questions and participate more effectively in key decisions that affect them. As part of its work over the past 25 years, RQI developed the Question Formulation Technique (QFT), a simple yet powerful strategy that helps students learn to formulate their own questions, work with their questions, and use them to drive their learning. In 2011, Harvard Education Press published Make Just One Change: Teach Students to Ask Their Own Questions by Co-Directors Dan Rothstein and Luz Santana. Since publication, over 30,000 educators have joined our online Educator Network and more than 250,000 educators around the world are implementing.

Building upon the field’s enthusiasm, RQI is now committed to getting the QFT into one million classrooms by the year 2020. Our Million Classrooms Campaign will offer new resources and a range of opportunities for engaging educators and supporting their use of the QFT. By 2020, we expect to see tens of millions of students in one million classrooms who are using the QFT to activate their own curiosity and become more engaged learners.

RQI’s work has been written about in The Boston Globe, The New York Times, The Atlantic, NPR, Education Week, and we have collaborated with many partners, including Teachers College, the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Teaching Channel, Library of Congress, and state departments of education and regional organizations in many states around the country.

Fellowship Overview:

RQI Education Program Summer Fellows will play a vital role in our effort to support important innovations in classroom pedagogy. Fellows will take on various programmatic and administrative responsibilities, including:

  • Using online platforms, especially Twitter, to learn about and share how educators are using the QFT
  • Documenting examples of how the QFT is used in the field
  • Working closely with Director of Professional Learning to provide support as needed to workshop and professional development session planning
  • Assisting in communications and organizational development
  • Helping to plan logistical details related to our summer seminars
  • Providing strategic support to the Million Classroom Campaign
  • Providing general office support, which may include supporting staff members on the development of PowerPoint presentations, assisting with the formatting and design of resources, and other support as needed.

Summer Fellows will learn about educational design work and how to communicate information effectively to different audiences. All RQI Fellows learn how the strategy helps individuals develop their ability to ask and use questions and will have opportunities to work closely with senior staff at a successful nonprofit.

Essential Skills & Experience:

  • Organizational skills
  • Attention to detail
  • Self-motivation
  • Critical and analytical thinking
  • Strong communication skills
  • Ability to work independently and as part of a team
  • A positive attitude
  • Familiarity with Twitter, Facebook, and other social media platforms
  • Office and program support skills (organization, documentation, general support)
  • Computer expertise (PowerPoint, Excel, Word, and comfortable with new applications)


The RQI Summer Fellow positions are unpaid. In the past RQI Summer Fellows have sought and received funding through their colleges. Please mention in your cover letter whether you may be able to secure funding for this fellowship opportunity. If we can be helpful as you apply to your college for funding, please let us know. RQI has limited funding to support competitive applicants.

Depending on the organization’s need and capacity, Summer Fellows work a minimum of 15 and up to 40 hours per week.

Instructions: Please submit the following to

1) Your resume or CV

2) A brief cover letter that references your interest in the position and an example of how your prior experiences will be helpful for this position.

Please note that you may be asked for a writing sample and references later in the interview process, but these are not required for your initial submission.

Deadline: Applications will be considered on a rolling basis. Please be aware that the application process is competitive and it is advisable that you submit your application materials as soon as possible.

No phone calls please. Candidates that make it to the next round will be contacted to schedule a phone interview.

Reflections from past RQI Summer Fellows & Interns:

“Working at RQI for the summer provided me with the opportunity to make meaningful relationships, gain invaluable experience from a small group of talented and experienced individuals, and explore my own passions and strengths through projects tailored towards my interests. The work atmosphere is engaging and productive while maintaining an open, safe space for honest conversation and learning. As a rising senior, this work truly helped me determine where I envisioned myself after graduation and allowed me to strengthen and diversify my network and experiences.”

– Kelly, Boston College Student

“While interning at RQI as a part of the S-997 Field Experience course, I realized how much I enjoyed working for a mission-driven organization! I learned about how the RQI strategy fits with developmental and educational psychology theory, intervention work, and curricular design. I also learned about organizational strategy and the thinking behind RQI’s ongoing work. Interning at RQI has helped me to better understand the type of work I hope to pursue in the future.”

– Codie, Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) ‘16

“During my internship I was able to contribute to many different parts of the organization’s work. While I primarily supported the work in education and school-family partnership, I also helped with social media, blogs, editing, preparation for meetings, amongst other work. It was one of my most rewarding experiences while attending HGSE!”

– Mikah, HGSE ‘16


The Right Question Institute is an equal opportunity employer. We are strongly committed to hiring a diverse and multicultural staff and encourage applications from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds.

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