CBO accepts applications for its internship program beginning in January of each year. We encourage students to register for job alerts to be informed of other opportunities at CBO.

Meet CBO's 2023 Interns

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Princeton University, MPA, Public and International Affairs

During my summer internship at CBO, I worked in the National Security Division on a project that involved testing the relationship between aircraft performance metrics and the percent of composite materials that made up each type of aircraft. The internship was tremendously helpful for solidifying my data analysis skills, for giving me insight into the federal budgeting process, and for shaping my knowledge of how the military develops and maintains aircraft. Thanks to CBO for being supportive, encouraging, and welcoming!

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Indiana University, MPA, Governance, Policy, and Security

As a summer associate within CBO’s National Security Division, I worked on multiple projects on the U.S. Navy’s Virginia Class nuclear-powered submarines. I focused on the maintenance of these ships to better understand the current force projection and evolving trends within the class’s lifecycle. These projects primarily involved data collection and creating data visualizations in R to evaluate overall class performance. The collaborative and friendly work environment makes CBO a wonderful place to work, and the intern series programming [featuring presentations by CBO’s division directors] makes every week a learning opportunity . . . . I have really enjoyed my time here at CBO and recommend this internship to anyone interested in economics, national security, and the federal budget.

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University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, Ph.D., Economics

During my internship in the Health Analysis Division at CBO, I estimated the net prices for branded drugs (after rebates) in commercial markets and analyzed the differences in prices by payer. For this project, I used data available to CBO on drug expenditures for Medicaid, Medicare, and the 340B program. The analysts at CBO have a tremendous amount of knowledge related to health economics and federal health programs, and it was a privilege to learn from their expertise. I’m grateful for the wonderful mentors and colleagues who were invested in this project and my success this summer.

CBO is an equal opportunity employer committed to diversity. CBO encourages women, minorities, people with disabilities, and veterans to apply.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do CBO interns do?

CBO interns participate in a paid 10-week program where they contribute to analysis in one of CBO’s divisions. Assignments are determined largely on the basis of students’ interests, knowledge, and academic background.

In addition, interns participate in an educational program that includes briefings on the work that we do and the way we do it. CBO interns are also afforded networking opportunities with budget and policy professionals.

How can I prepare for a CBO internship?

Previous interns describe the following experiences and skills as valuable in preparing for their CBO internships:

  • Course work in economics, public finance, public budgeting, microeconomics, econometrics, data analytics, and public health
  • Projects involving SAS (or other statistical programs) and large data sets
  • Independent research
  • Strong writing skills
  • Interest in understanding the federal budget process
  • Other policy internships and participation in student government
What are the qualifications for the summer internship program?

You should:

  • Be pursuing a graduate degree in economics, public policy, health policy, finance, data science, or a related field
  • Have solid writing skills and the ability to communicate clearly and concisely
  • Have exceptional interpersonal and analytical skills
  • Be familiar with computer programming, statistics, econometrics, or other quantitative methods

Often, CBO seeks summer interns in other disciplines, such as budget and financial management, information technology, communications, and human resources. Qualifications and deadlines for those positions differ.

Applicants who have already completed their degree program are encouraged to view our current job openings.

What is the application process?

Each January, CBO begins accepting applications for its Summer Internship Program. All applications must be submitted online by the application deadline. Only completed applications will be considered. When you apply:

  • Submit your cover letter and résumé
  • Upload a transcript (unofficial transcripts are acceptable)
  • Provide contact information for two references
Can noncitizens apply?

Federal legislation permits CBO to hire permanent residents who are seeking citizenship and certain other asylees and refugees, as outlined in 8 U.S.C. § 1324b(a)(3)(B). Please contact if you have questions about employment eligibility before submitting an application.

How does CBO select interns?

CBO selects interns on the basis of:

  • Academic achievement
  • Relevance of your academic training to CBO's work
  • Relevance of your experience and skills to the available projects
  • Relevant work experience
When are interns selected?

Applications are reviewed in March and interns are selected by mid-April. Candidates to whom we are unable to extend an internship will receive an email informing them of their status.

Only occasionally does CBO offer internships during the academic year. You can register to receive job alerts if fall or spring semester opportunities become available.