Program Expectations (PLEASE READ!):
Students must be prepared to meet professional expectations and deadlines, attend at times boring, complicated meetings, respond quickly, creatively problem solve, and go above and beyond requests. In return you will have an unforgettable learning experience, expand your network, and develop in-demand professional skills in preparation for your later career in the political or policy world.
Skills required include: excellent self-direction, time management, organization, communication and response skills, research and analytical skills, note-taking, self-advocacy, self-motivation, writing skills, patience, and flexibility.
Please note that this program is only open to juniors and seniors who have a 3.0 GPA. Please see below for additional eligibility requirements and contact Liz Raddock with any questions.
The Internship Experience:
Potential tasks and projects will include:
- attending and summarizing long committee hearings on subject matter that will be new to you
- providing concise policy summaries and reports
- tracking and summarizing complicated bills
- providing constituent services
- social media support
- event planning
- writing press releases and letters
Requirements & Logistics:
This program requires students to attend class on campus every Monday and a work minimum of 10 hours per week for your legislator. Class time and travel time are not included in the 10 hours.
The Legislature meets Tuesday through Friday, 9 to 12 and 1 to 4 p.m. Students must spend at least 4 hours per week at the Statehouse. As such, it is best to plan your Spring course schedule to have at least one day without classes so you can to travel to the Statehouse in Montpelier on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, or Friday for the required once-a-week visit (twice a week if possible). Public transportation from Burlington to the Vermont Statehouse takes approximately 1 hour in each direction. Legislators are representatives of various Vermont communities, so you may also be asked in the course of your duties to travel to their areas of the state and visit with local offices or constituents.
Carpooling with others in the program is strongly encouraged. There will be an expectation to split gas money if a carpooling arrangement takes place.
Program Schedule & Credit Information:
Because the Vermont Legislative Session does not line up with UVM's academic calendar, students in this program will be required to enroll in the Winter Session in addition to the Spring course. The first week of the Winter session (December 26 - 30) will be remote and will consist of training modules designed to prepare you for the upcoming internship experience. Your internship will begin in-person during the second week of Winter session (January 2 - 6) to align with the start of the Legislative Session (January 3). You'll need to be back in Vermont and ready to go for the start of your internship!
The program awards a total of 5 internship credits:
- Winter session - 2 credits (CAS 2991 OL1/OL2)
- Spring session - 3 credits (CAS 2920 F/G)
CAS's internship hours-to-credits rate is 40:1. So you will be working about 200 hours at your internship between January 2 and May 12 to earn the 5 credits. If you would like to continue at your internship into the summer, you may arrange that with your legislator and apply for funding through UVM's summer internship scholarship process.
You will be matched with your legislator by Nov. 27th and will be expected to meet with your legislator at least once before winter break.
The application for the Spring 2024 session will open in September 2023.
Do you want priority application status for the Spring 2024 session? Enroll in the Vermont Legislative Research Service this fall! The VLRS is the best way to prepare yourself for the Legislative Internship Program, so it is highly recommended. In order to receive your admission to VLRS prior to registration week, please submit your application by Tuesday, April 11th. Apply here!
- In order to apply for the Legislative Internship Program, you MUST attend an information session or watch the recording prior to completing your application. Information session dates will be announced in September 2023.
- Fill out the application form by October 6. You will be asked to answer short answer and multiple choice questions about your professional experience, skills, and upload a one-page writing sample.
- If selected as a finalist, you will be contacted to schedule an interview with the course instructor.
- Hold Junior or Senior class standing at the time of the internship
- Have a 3.0 GPA or above
- Attend one of three information sessions prior to applying (dates TBA)
- Attend an interview with instructor
- Have ability to travel to the Statehouse once per week (driving, carpooling, or public transportation)
- Students are strongly encouraged to take no more than 3 courses in addition to the internship course
- Students must be in Vermont by January 2nd to begin the Legislative Session in Montpelier on January 3rd