Resources for Multi-ethnic Students
The Office of Career and Professional Development (CPD) at Washington and Lee University has not vetted any of the internship and volunteer opportunity listings on this page and makes no representations or guarantees regarding any of the listed opportunities. It is the responsibility of students and alumni to do their own due diligence when applying for and accepting any of these opportunities.
CPD strives to make our services welcoming and accessible to people of all backgrounds. If you identify an area of our work that you believe misses a critical perspective or employs language that needs improvement, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We welcome your feedback.
General Career Advice
- Understand your protections against discrimination: Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 prohibits discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, or sex which includes sexual/romantic orientation and gender identity/expression. The Americans with Disabilities Act prohibits discrimination based on disability. The Pregnancy Discrimination Act prohibits discrimination based on pregnancy. Title II of the Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act prohibits discrimination based on genetic information.
- Know your rights: Understand the questions employers can and cannot ask you as you proceed through the hiring process. Review a sample of allowable and prohibited questions here. Focus the conversation on your skills and abilities and what you bring to the workplace.
- Evaluate the corporate climate: Research the demographics of the company and get a feel for their level of diversity. Try to talk with alumni in that industry and current and former employees in the company about their experiences. You should also look at the diversity in the company's management and executives, as this provides insight into how committed they are to diversity. You can ask employers about diversity initiatives or how they plan on supporting diversity in the future. Consider reviewing the company's mission statement, website, and social media to determine their position on inclusion and diversity. Find out if the company has an affinity group for its multi-ethnic employees.
- Stay informed and negotiate: Learn more about wage discrimination and visit CPD's resource library in Handshake to read about how to negotiate a good starting salary or raise. This information can also come from networking with other employees. See CPD's advice on salary negotiations here. Payscale, Salary.com, Glassdoor, and Robert Half are online resource for salary comparisons and negotiation scenarios.
How culturally competent is the employer?
- Network with company employees to find out about its work environment and attitude towards diversity. Read articles about the company and its reputation regarding issues of diversity. Informational interviews can help you get a feel for the workplace dynamic.
What questions can be helpful to ask in an interview?
- Directly confronting an employer about their stance on diversity or environment may be difficult to ask. Try asking more open-ended questions such as, "Why do employees choose to stay here?" "How does this company support teamwork" or "How do people advance in this workplace?" Listen carefully to the answers provided.
What hairstyle is considered professional for an interview/workplace?
- This is a difficult question to answer especially for African-American women. Misunderstanding and discrimination sometimes arise from a person's hairstyle choice. It is important for you to make a personal decision about the style most comfortable for you. Your natural hair should not be the basis of an employer's hiring decision; however, for issues regarding hair color, research the company and/or connect with a current employee to see what is considered professional.
- APSA Minority Fellowship Program (MFP) - Fellowships for individuals from underrepresented backgrounds applying to or in the early stages of doctoral programs in political science
- CAPAL - Focused on Asian Pacific American community; offers various leadership programs and internships
- Hispanic Access Foundation - Paid and unpaid internship and fellowship opportunities for those who culturally identify as Latino/a
- Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities (HACU) - Student services website lists internships, academic and travel scholarships, and conferences
- INROADS - Posts internships for underrepresented students in top companies and businesses
- The Latino Medical School Association - offers undergraduate memberships, mentoring and career resources
- Multicultural Advertising Intern Program (MAIP) - 10-week paid summer internship program in media planning and PR
- National Association of Asian American Professionals (NAAAP) - Resources for job search and networking opportunities
- National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice - Paid internships and fellowships for Latina/x people
- National Partnership for Women and Families - Internships in D.C. with applications from people of color and bilingual and bicultural individuals encouraged
- Organization of Chinese Americans (OCA) - Provides internship opportunities in D.C.
- Smithsonian Minority Awards Program - Paid summer and spring internships for groups who are underrepresented in the disciplines of research conducted at the Smithsonian Institution and museum field (temporarily closed due to COVID-19)
- Sponsors for Educational Opportunity - SEO Career is a pre-professional development and internship program for talented Black, Hispanic, and Native American undergrads
- TakeRoot Justice - Jobs and internship opportunities for people with diverse backgrounds encouraged in New York City, New York
- United Negro College Fund (UNCF) Scholars Program - Paid internship and fellowship opportunities for Black and African American undergraduate students at leading corporations and national organizations
- Diversity Inc. - Top 50 Companies for Diversity
- Directory of Associations - Database for a variety of professional associations
- Equal Opportunity Publications - Organization dedicated to connecting employers with students from diverse backgrounds
- American Association for Access Equity and Diversity - Association of professionals managing affirmative action, equal opportunity, diversity and other human resource programs
- American Indian Science and Engineering Society (AISES) - 10-week summer internship for full-time students who are enrolled members (or descendants of enrolled members) of a federally or state recognized American Indian Tribe, Alaska Native Village, or Native Hawaiian
- Asians in Higher Education - Job search engine for opportunities at colleges and universities
- Hispanic Alliance for Career Enhancement (HACE) - Career resources and networking contacts
- New American Alliance - Formation of Latino business leaders promoting advancement of Latino community; offers internships in spring, summer, and fall
- Enroll in CPD Canvas course and join industry groups of interest to receive notifications about jobs and internships and relevant career-related events
- Make an appointment with a Career Fellow to review your resume and job search resources or a Career Advisor on Handshake to discuss your career plans
- Review Career Resources for Students from Underrepresented Communities
- The Class of 1994 Office of Inclusion and Engagement - Creating and maintaining a safe and supportive atmosphere as students integrate into the educational, cultural and social environment of the University
- Colonnade Connections and LinkedIn - Network with alumni
- Student Organizations - W&L student organizations with diverse missions