Become a Servant Leader Intern

College-age young people and recent college graduates play a key role in the Children’s Defense Fund Freedom Schools® program as servant leader interns. CDF Freedom Schools servant leader interns are responsible for the front line care and nurturing of the children. Using the Integrated Reading Curriculum, they serve as facilitators in the classroom and as leaders of parent workshops and community outreach activities.


  • Deliver the Integrated Reading Curriculum to a class of no more than ten students for 6–8 weeks during the summer months, according to the standards developed by the Children's Defense Fund and the local program sponsor.
  • Set up and break down his/her classroom space, including securing and organizing the appropriate materials.
  • Collaborate with staff to establish and maintain a supportive and structured environment for the children entrusted to their care.
  • Serve as a Harambee! leader each day of program operation.
  • Serve as a leader of afternoon activities and other special events; chaperone field trips.
  • Participate fully in the National Training in Tennessee. (1st, 2nd and 3rd year servant leader interns only).


  • Must be at least 18-30 years of age, have completed at least one year of college, and have plans to complete the college degree
  • Maintain or have graduated with at least a 3.0 GPA
  • Experience managing large groups of children, college-age young people, and parents
  • Solid commitment to children’s advocacy and enthusiasm for the CDF Freedom Schools program
  • Ability to motivate others and work as part of an intergenerational team
  •  Strong appreciation and understanding of individual cultural history and the willingness to be open and respectful of all cultures
  • Willingness to strive for excellence in all areas and ability to think critically and analytically
  • Exhibit positive behavior and attitude; model a mature and professional demeanor; possess excellent written and verbal skills
  • Strong interpersonal skills and commitment to the ethics of good character, humility, and servant leadership
  • Current voter registration (as eligible by law)
  • Authorization for background check for criminal and child protective findings

Servant Leader Intern Application

Please select your preferred CDF Freedom School site before submitting your application. Please note that the Central Ohio area includes several schools; you will have an opportunity to indicate your preferred school during the interview process.