START is excited to be collaborating with the University of Maryland Center for Advanced Study of Language (CASL) to offer the following project as part of our program. CASL serves as the premier strategic research partner for the U.S. Intelligence Community (IC), solving the most critical and challenging language problems.
Many members of transnational criminal organizations are multilingual and routinely code-switch, using multiple languages, sometimes even in the same utterance. Oftentimes this sort of language switching is one of several communication strategies, including the use of slang, jargon, and other non-standard speech features, to avoid detection. Interpreting the intelligence pertaining to transnational crime challenges both human analysts and automated analytical tools. The languages that group members use with one another can indicate something important about the relationship between group members, which can be missed without taking into account the cultural background to multilingual communication. Current data analysis techniques--including many natural language processing (NLP) tools--are disadvantaged by their reliance on monolingual data.
As an intern on this project, you will find ways to collect text and/or speech data with verifiable multilingual communication. This data should include the collection of terms commonly borrowed across languages, and may involve helping to recruiting a network of language consultants familiar with languages and cultures used in multilingual contexts.
Depending on skills, interests, and language background, you may also help annotate (or coordinate annotation of) this data, identifying the languages used and other relevant cultural and linguistic information. Interns with programming experience and interest in human language technology (HLT) tools may also prototype and evaluate multilingual extensions of currently monolingual NLP tools.
Deadline: Sunday, November 11, 2018, 11:59pm
Citizenship Requirement: US citizenship is not required.
- Interest in bilingualism or language technology
- Record of strong academic achievement
- Attention to detail
- Fluency in one or more foreign languages
- Ability to recruit and work with native speakers of relevant languages
- Training or experience in linguistics or annotation, including language annotation or data annotation.
Team Meeting Times: TBD
Work Location: Interns will work at CASL (7005 52nd Ave, College Park, MD) or the Patapsco Building (5201 Campus Dr, Suite 1110, College Park, MD).
General Information for all START Internships
START Headquarters is located in the Discovery District in College Park, MD. Our exact address will be provided upon being invited for an interview. All internship hours must be completed at this office unless otherwise specified. Working remotely is not permitted.
Orientation Date: Thursday, January 24th, 2019. All interns are required to attend orientation. You may be required to attend an additional day of orientation on Friday, January 25th, 2019. Your supervisor will inform you if you are required to attend both days.
Internship Duration: Thursday, January 24th, 2019 to Friday, May 10th, 2019. All interns must be able to commit to the duration of the whole program.
Work Hours: All interns must work at least 10 hours per week during the Spring 2019 program. Work hours are scheduled from Monday to Friday, 9:00am-5:00pm. Interns may not work longer than 8-hour shifts.
All internships are UNPAID and START is unable to provide travel stipends or housing arrangements.
We strongly encourage and recommend that interns seek academic credit for their internship through their home institution or department, if possible.
If undertaking the internship for credit, you must indicate this on your application form. Be sure to notify your internship supervisor if you need to work more than 10 hours per work for this reason.
Applicants interested in applying for an internship for any semester other than or in addition to Spring 2019, must submit a separate application for each semester with the correct application form for that semester.
How to Apply for START Internships:
START is currently accepting applications for Spring 2019. The spring application form will be open until Sunday, November 11th, 2018 at 11:59pm. However some projects for the spring semester have an earlier application deadline of Sunday, October 28th, 2018 at 11:59pm. Late, incomplete, or applications not submitted correctly will not be considered. To access the application: click here.
Applicants must pay close attention to the requirements of each internship they are applying for, including attendance to team meetings and minimum time commitment. Inability to attend compulsory meetings or work the minimum required hours will result in the revocation of any offer made.
Address your cover letter to the internship supervisor of your first choice project.
Failure to complete the application form in full, including the selection of 1-3 internship preferences could result in your application being rejected without further consideration.
Failure to submit the proper materials according to the directions provided in the project description could result in your application being rejected without further consideration.
Due to the high volume of applicants, only top candidates selected for an interview will be contacted.
Applicants may be asked to attend more than one interview.
Any successful candidate will be asked to respond with a firm acceptance within 48 hours of the offer being made. Failure to respond could result in the vacancy passed to another candidate.
Any questions regarding the specific requirements for the internship vacancy should be directed to the supervisor(s) listed for the project.
Any questions regarding the application process should be directed to the START Education Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
All internship applicants must submit all materials in one .pdf file using the file name format:
LastName, FirstName_InternCandidate.pdf or .doc.
The internship application packet should include the following documents in the following order:
One page cover letter
One page resume
Official or unofficial transcript(s)
Two-page writing sample (Communications applicants must submit two writing samples.)
Note for International Students:
START welcomes applications from international students for all of our internships where US citizenship is not a requirement (see the qualifications listed for each project for details).
It is, however, the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that their visa or immigration status permits them to undertake an unpaid internship. It is also the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all proper paperwork, like documented approval from your home institution, is available and processed in time for the start of the internship. Failure to comply with these stipulations, or provide the paperwork required to verify your status, will result in your internship offer being rescinded without further consideration. START is unable to sponsor visas for non-US Citizens due to the short timeline of our program and the lengthy processing time for visas. Unfortunately, this largely limits our ability to accept anything other than F-1 visas on regular, not OPT, status.