Social Impact

Careers in social impact can directly affect positive change in society. Princeton University's informal motto: 'In the Nation’s Service and the Service of Humanity' reflects the importance of this mission.

Because it is so broad and opportunities are so varied, social impact can be a difficult concept to define. Roles can span focus areas including sustainability, healthcareeducation and more. Many social impact jobs can be found at nonprofit and mission-driven organizations, as well as with government and public service entities.  In addition, a growing number of corporate employers have units that focus on social impact or corporate social responsibility. 

Gaining experience

There are countless opportunities to get involved in social impact work at Princeton University, ranging from academic work and research opportunities to student groups and co-curricular activities. 

Start exploring your interests by reviewing options offered by the Pace Center for Civic Engagement, undergraduate student groups, graduate student groups and by researching causes and issues you feel strongly about. Discover what you are passionate about and seek volunteer opportunities and internships to develop experience.

Hiring process and timeline

Because this field spans multiple types of organizations and roles, there is not a single hiring process or timeline. Many organizations typically hire close to the start date for the position. Identifying organizations of interest and then checking their websites regularly or speaking to alumni who work there will offer insights into their specific recruiting cycles.

Princeton resources

Internship, fellowship, funding and related opportunities:

Professional organizations and associations

Professional organizations and associations are membership-based groups comprised of people working in a similar field. They can be helpful resources for students to learn more about a field, develop connections and discover related opportunities. You can search for related organizations and associations using a database provided by the Princeton University Library.

Princeton Alumni