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Event management careers can be glamorous. Organizing a-list parties, award ceremonies, gigs, lectures, and conferences is an exciting way to spend your nine-to-five. However, event planning skills can help make a huge impact on important causes too.

If you’re looking to carve out a career in event organizing, before taking on corporate event management jobs, consider the opportunities within the nonprofit sector. You could gain valuable experience and skills while helping to make the world a better place. You can play a vital role for NGOs with event management, raising awareness of their work’s importance and connecting them with crucial funding.

Nonprofit event management internships can be the perfect way to try things out, make your first steps along the career path, or boost your career for working professionals! Now all you need to know is how to find event management internships.

In this blog post, we will guide you through the steps to intern in event management within the nonprofit sector and answer some common questions you might have about the logistics and requirements to intern in event management.

Steps to Get an Internship in Event Management

Step 1: Define Your Goals

Really, the question isn’t how to find event management internships, but how to find the ones that suit your wants and needs. That’s why it’s crucial to define your goals before you start searching.

Ask yourself what you hope to gain from the experience. Are you looking to develop your event planning skills, make a difference for your chosen cause, or build connections in the nonprofit sector? Clarifying your objectives will help you choose from the plethora of options out there. Equally important, it’ll help impress interviewers in the application stage.

Step 2: Build a Strong Resume

Creating a well-crafted resume is one of the most important steps to intern in event management. Make sure to highlight relevant skills, such as project management, communication, and attention to detail. Also, try to demonstrate your commitment to social causes.

Event management internship requirements tend to be more focused on experience than education. While relevant qualifications are definitely a bonus, they are by no means a must. So showcase any prior event planning experience. If you don’t have any, consider volunteer work or extracurricular activities.

a woman's hand typing in a laptop

Step 3: Research

Researching all the opportunities for event management internships could take forever if you let it. So, while you want to explore every avenue available, focus on not getting overwhelmed by the choice. Perhaps you already have your heart set on a cause or destination that will narrow down your search. Alternatively, you could get some help from Roots on how to find event management internships.

With us, you’ll have a dedicated team to talk you through destinations, causes, and requirements to intern in event management and match you with the ideal opportunity. Benefiting from our years of experience and extensive network of contacts, you’ll breeze through what could otherwise be months of research.

Step 4: Tailor Your Application

Each nonprofit organization is unique, so tailor your application to match their specific needs and objectives.

Write a compelling cover letter that explains why you are passionate about their cause and how your event management skills can contribute to their success. Pay attention to the individual event management internship requirements and try to respond to each of the skills and experiences mentioned in the listing.

corporate employees pointing to the papers on the table

Step 5: Network and Connect

The ability to network is a powerful tool throughout event management careers, and its an important part of how to find event management internships too. Attend industry events, conferences, and webinars to connect with professionals in the nonprofit sector. Utilize social media platforms like LinkedIn to reach out to individuals working in nonprofit organizations. Networking can open doors to internship opportunities that may not be publicly advertised.

Common Questions about Internships in Event Management

Why should I do an event management internship with an NGO?

First, ethical nonprofit internships let you meaningfully contribute to a worthwhile cause. An intern has the potential to make a real difference for an NGO with event management. Fundraising events and awareness drives are critical sources of donations and support for many nonprofit organizations. So, event management internships have you doing vital work that keeps these organizations running.

Secondly, there are often fantastic opportunities for vertical movement in the nonprofit sector. Many nonprofits are run by small teams, so you have the chance to play a big role for them. This means you can take on bigger, more exciting event management jobs, take on more responsibility, and enjoy more agency than you might find in a corporate internship.

How much does it cost to intern in event management?

Unfortunately, there are very few paid event management internships in the nonprofit sector. So, a necessary part of how to find event management internships for an NGO is working out how you’re going to fund them.

How much does it cost to intern in event management? This will vary a lot depending on the destination you pick. One of the great reasons to intern in Ghana compared to the Netherlands is that it’s a lot more affordable.

Typically, though, your expenditure for event management internships will need to include the cost of flights, accommodations, and your living expenses during the internship.

How can I make a meaningful impact as an event management intern?

Nonprofits host a wide range of events, including fundraisers, awareness campaigns, volunteer appreciation events, and community outreach programs. As an event management intern, you may have the opportunity to work on a diverse set of projects that align with the nonprofit’s mission.

To make a meaningful impact as an intern, focus on delivering successful events that support the nonprofit’s objectives. This may involve managing logistics, coordinating volunteers, and ensuring that events run smoothly. Additionally, actively engage with the organization’s mission and contribute innovative ideas that can enhance the impact of their events.

an intern playing with a local child

5 Event Management Internships to consider

Event Management Internship in The Netherlands

Work at the nexus of a citywide network of community-led voluntary projects in the bustling city of Amsterdam. Your role as an intern will focus you on planning and organizing volunteer events and activities around the city. This will include liaising with social programs across the city and coordinating groups of volunteer workers.

If you’ve ever wondered how to find event management internships in Amsterdam, here’s the program for you. This is a fantastic program not only for its hands-on experience in event management but also because the potential interns have to build a deep, varied portfolio of planned events.

Sports Coaching Internship in Ghana

This internship lets you build an array of planning skills and gain practical experience, all while helping to provide children in underprivileged areas with sports coaching. You’ll organize weekly coaching sessions for a range of sports, other developmental activities, and fund-raising events if interested.

Here’s an ideal program for students interested in trying things out. It’ll let you get a feel for event management careers while exploring a new country and immersing yourself in the culture and community life of rural Ghana.

two local women smiling for a photo

Charity Event Management Internship in Ghana

Placing you with the same organization as above, this program puts you in a role more focused on the NGO management side of the operation. You’ll still have the opportunity to get involved with community events and coach sports, but you’ll spend more of your time attending awareness drives and fundraising events.

This internship gives you practical experience in event management and insight into the behind-the-scenes operations of NGO management. Also, there are just a lot of reasons why Ghana is a great internship destination.

NGO Event Coordinator Internship in South Africa

Help this incredible conservation-focused nonprofit in Cape Town organize their environmental festival and events in stunning natural settings across South Africa’s Western Cape. You’ll play an important role in liaising with attendees, coordinating partners, and planning the logistics of these festivals.

One great aspect of this program is that your work involves running your actual event during the day too. So, you are the result of your work on the ground.

NGO Event Management Internship in South Africa

Gain hands-on event management experience working with this grassroots education nonprofit operating on the outskirts of Cape Town. Individuals on this program spend their time coordinating educational workshops, assisting with fundraising events, and getting involved with community events themselves.

Situated further out from Cape Town’s city center, this internship offers something special. You’ll have all the excitement of having one of the world’s most exciting cities on your doorstep, but you’ll also get to see a quieter side of the city that few tourists visit.

Why Should You Do an Event Management Internship with an NGO?

Learning how to find event management internships with an NGO is a long but rewarding path. Choosing to work with an NGO adds an extra layer of purpose to your internship experience, making it a valuable and fulfilling journey. Your internship in event management could be more than the first step toward a fulfilling career; it could be a chance to make a real difference in the world too.

By following the steps to intern in event management outlined above, you can increase your chances of landing an internship that not only enhances your skills but also contributes to the greater good. If you’re ready to embark on this exciting adventure, consider exploring opportunities with organizations like Roots, known for their commitment to social change through events.

Browse event management internships available with Roots

This blog was written by Tom Rusbridge

This blog was edited by Eric Black.