The Nikkei Community



Now in its 19th year, the Nikkei Community Internship is the best opportunity for college students to build networks, professional skills, and make an impact in the Japanese American community. 



Occurring during the summer, our Internship is a paid, 8-week, full-time internship experience designed to help you make your mark in the community. Participants have the opportunity to intern in Southern California through Kizuna, or Northern California through the Japanese Community Youth Council (JCYC) and Japantown Community Congress of San Jose (JCCSJ).

Design and implement impactful projects, meet community leaders, and build your legacy by helping to shape our community’s future in Kizuna's internship program.

Program dEtails


  • Check back for updated program details!
  • Program End: August 6, 2019
  • *Our internship is an 8-week program. Requires two overnight commitments. Dates to be determined.

Paid Positions

  • Each intern will receive a $2,000 stipend upon completion of the program.
  • *There is no cost or application fee to participate in NCI.

Application Deadline

  • Sunday, April 19, 2020
  • *Recognizing the unprecedented time we are in, we have extended our application deadline to accommodate university students' changed schedules. We will accept applications until 11:59 pm on Sunday, April 19, 2020.

Participating Organizations

Career Preparation

Work experience is the most valuable asset to list on your resume. Through building professional skills, networks, and a resume worthy full-time working experience, NCI prepares you for your future career.

Program highlights

In our 19th year

This will be the 19th year of the Kizuna's Internship program. The program is now one of the most well known internships in the Japanese American community.

INvolvement oriented

Our internship program provides the networks and skill set to be involved long after the program has completed. 

Community landscape

The internship program is a great way to get to know the landscape of the Japanese American community.

*Icons designed by Freepik & Flat Icons from Flaticon


Our graduates have gone on to do great work in the community through employee & volunteer positions. Even Kizuna was created by alumni of this program!

"Growing up in Orange County, I didn't have much of a connection to the Japanese-American community until the Nikkei Community Internship. NCI introduced me to the many organizations and individuals that have worked for provide better opportunities my generation and inspired me to do the same. At a time when many communities are struggling to develop new leadership, NCI has now produced countless board members and community voices to ensure the Japanese American community thrives for generations to come."

- Cory Hayashi, VP Portfolio Manager at First Choice Bank, 2018 Nisei Week President, 2003 Intern

"As a participant of the Nikkei Community Internship program, one of my fondest memories was getting to meet the community leaders that have made incredible strides for the Japanese American community. Years later I still remember the stories of passion and drive told by the dedicated pioneers that have come before us. Ultimately, it was those experiences that have helped shape me into the person I am today. Thanks to the NCI program I have made it my goal to be involved and continue serving the Japanese American community."

- Michelle Okawa, Department Coordinator, Department of Asian & Asian American Studies, CSULB, 2014 Intern

"Through the Nikkei Community Internship, I had the opportunity to expand my network, learn professionalism skills, and create lifelong friendships, all while gaining a deeper understanding for the Japanese American community.  I truly appreciated NCI’s collaborative and intergenerational environment which allowed me to learn about each Japantown’s historical significance and guided me toward ways that I can become more involved and give back to the community. As a Yonsei, I am inspired to continue learning from generations before me, and I hope to help pave a path for future generations of Japanese Americans."

- Brandon Fujii, Co-Director of UCLA Kyodo Taiko, 2018 Intern

Ready to Apply?

In order to gain the best understanding of our candidates, our internship application utilizes a two-step process of vetting and selecting interns.

Step 1: Application, Resume & PERSONAL STATEMENT

You can begin your application by clicking here (or any of the other “apply” links on the page). The application is online and will require two additional attachments: 1) resume, 2) video personal statement.

Step 2: Interview

Candidates selected to move on to the interview stage will be given an interview time and location. An interview team will ask the candidate a series of questions to better get to know the interests, skill set and qualifications of each candidate. Some candidates may be asked to attend additional interviews with participating organizations.

SErve Your Community

NCI offers an opportunity to work on projects with real community impact. Interns feel a sense of satisfaction from their experience with NCI because they’ve made a difference. Interns also leave NCI with a strong sense of community needs and solutions.