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Clinical Research Internship

Clinical Research Internship

We are seeking a student or recent graduate in the fields of medicine, nutrition or public health to assist with dietary intervention clinical research studies at a D.C.-based nonprofit organization. A strong interest in plant-based nutrition is a plus and the ideal start date will be in late August or early September.

About the Physicians Committee

The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine is dedicated to saving and improving human and animal lives through plant-based diets and ethical and effective scientific research. Our vision is to create a healthier world through a new emphasis on plant-based nutrition, and scientific research conducted ethically, without using animals. We invite you to visit our YouTube channel, our website, and Physicians Committee president Dr. Neal Barnard’s blog.

About this Internship Opportunity

The Physicians Committee’s clinical research department is currently running several innovative dietary intervention studies, including a cross-over, randomized trial to determine whether a plant-based diet, along with an elimination diet, will cause a reduction in inflammation and pain in patients with rheumatoid arthritis. We are also conducting a 12-week, workplace wellness study, to investigate the efficacy of a series of plant-based nutrition education classes on body weight, blood pressure, and plasma lipid concentrations. Our team is in the process of designing two more clinical trials assessing the effects of a plant-based diet on type 1 diabetes and asthma. 

The Clinical Research Intern will help the clinical research team with a number of key study tasks, including:

  • Recruiting participants for the studies
  • Collecting, keeping, and completing study-related data
  • Helping with the plant-based nutrition education classes for the participants
  • Providing support for the study participants to adhere to their diet and to come to all the appointments (on phone and in person)

In addition to learning these clinical skills, the clinical research intern will have the opportunity to learn more about how we help our participants make dietary changes and stick to their prescribed diet. These clinical and communications skills will be a great asset for any student interested in a career focused on clinical research or lifestyle medicine. 

The clinical research intern will be mentored by our director of clinical research and other members of our team of nutrition and clinical research experts. Interns may also have the opportunity to participate in campaign events, staff education sessions, Capitol Hill briefings, and other Physicians Committee activities. All interns receive a full-day orientation at the start of their internship and ongoing support from their staff mentor.


Applicants should have:

  • An educational background in medicine, nutrition or public health. Current undergraduate or graduate students and recent graduates are all welcome to apply.
  • Excellent research, writing, and problem-solving skills
  • A strong attention to detail
  • A strong interest in our vision to create a healthier world through a new emphasis on plant-based nutrition, and scientific research conducted ethically, without using animals.

Terms: The Physicians Committee is located in the Metro-accessible Friendship Heights neighborhood in Washington, D.C. This unpaid volunteer internship is not available as employment. Housing accommodations near the Physicians Committee office may be available at no cost if needed. The Physicians Committee will assist interns in obtaining course credit if applicable. The ideal candidate will be able to intern 20-40 hours a week and commit at least three months to the internship. Start and end dates are flexible. The ideal start date will be in late August or early September.

The Physicians Committee welcomes applications from students or recent graduates from outside the United States. 

How to apply: Click here to complete our online internship application. Applications for the fall semester internship are due May 15, 2020.

For more information, contact the Physicians Committee’s Human Resources department at


Innovative research studies prove the power of dietary interventions. In the process, they grab the attention of the press and the public and influence the policies of government agencies and health organizations, ultimately altering eating habits. The result can be a revolution in health and a dramatic drop in consumption of disease-promoting products like meat and dairy products. Our research team conducts, publishes, and presents nutrition studies and makes their findings accessible to the public. We have conducted key research studies that have established the power of nutrition to improve diabetes, lipid disorders, weight management, chronic pain, and other conditions. Our NIH-funded research proved the power of plant-based diets for type 2 diabetes, leading to the acceptance of this approach by the American Diabetes Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and to a series of PBS television programs that brought this method to millions of people. This research has been the basis for many books and educational DVDs. 

Through a strategically planned series of clinical trials and meta-analyses, the Physicians Committee is building the foundation of research on the power of plant-based diets that is needed by policymakers who are considering nutrition recommendations. We aim to increase our investment in research on plant-based diets and to use our findings to influence scientific understanding, medical practice, public policy, and public awareness. For more information, visit