POSITION: Internship / Externship - Various Programs
LOCATION: Denver, CO
SEMESTER: Summer 2020
The National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) is the nation’s pre-eminent bipartisan membership organization for state legislators, legislative staff and other intergovernmental groups in the 50 states, commonwealths and territories and has been since 1975. NCSL provides research, technical assistance and opportunities for policymakers to exchange ideas on the most pressing state issues. NCSL’s mission is to improve the quality and effectiveness of state legislatures; promote policy innovation and communication among state legislatures; and ensure state legislatures a strong, cohesive voice in the federal system. While NCSL is bipartisan in nature, all NCSL staff work is strictly nonpartisan.
NCSL offers flexible, variable hour intern/externships in a variety of programs and policy areas. Hours typically range between 15-25 hours per week during the school year and full-time opportunities may be available in the summer for up to 12 weeks. Intern/externships may be paid or unpaid depending on availability. When funding permits, NCSL will pay $15 p/hour on a semi-monthly basis. Many colleges and universities provide academic credit for intern/externships. It is the student’s responsibility to contact their advisor and obtain academic credit within the institution’s guidelines.
NCSL intern/externships provide students an opportunity to gain workplace skills while learning about a variety of public policy areas that impact state legislatures and other intergovernmental groups. The individual will have responsibility for tracking state legislative bills, analyzing and reporting on legislation, performing policy research, responding to requests for information, assisting with meetings for constituents, writing policy publications, collecting information about current events related to assigned topics, supporting and maintaining web resources, collaborating with other NCSL staff, and other duties as assigned.
This opportunity covers a range of policy topics in the assigned program and requires a person who is able to juggle multiple tasks and topics efficiently. It also requires the ability to work both independently and as part of a team across projects and program areas within NCSL, as well as excellent written and oral communication skills to interact with a wide variety of audiences.
SPECIFIC PROJECTS / TASKS:
- Fielding, researching, and responding to information requests;
- Tracking and summarizing state legislation for print and online publications for members;
- Performing legislative research, analysis, and writing about emerging policy topics with the goal of publishing web briefs, legislative summaries, magazine articles, etc. on behalf of NCSL;
- Updating web-based resources and policy documents;
- Researching, interviewing lawmakers, and writing for State Legislatures magazine;
- Performing administrative duties and providing general support for program staff;
- Support with planning, logistics, and preparing materials for meetings and other NCSL events;
- Using online resources, Statenet, LexisNexis, WestLaw, and other available databases to collect and monitor data;
- Assisting with drafting issue briefs and other written deliverables.
NCSL intern/externships are designed for mutal benefit - students get hands-on legislative/policy experience, including extensive research and writing opporutnities while NCSL is positioned to continue offering the highest quality research and analysis to its members quickly and efficiently. A primary function of this position is to assist with legislative tracking and research requests, which allows the intern/extern to learn about program-specific policy issues. In addition, certain programs may offer interns/externs research projects or writing opportunities in their selected field. Interns/externs are mentored by leading program staff in carrying out their specific tasks and are provided resources and guidance throughout their parternship with NCSL.
Intern/externs will gain:
- A better understanding of how state legislatures and the federal government work;
- Increased proficiency in research and writing skills;
- Proficiency in high-quality constituent outreach, interaction and responsiveness;
- Increased capability in using and maintaining on-line legislation databases;
- Enhanced knowledge of state legislative processes;
- An understanding where state and federal partners intersect on policies and programs.
Qualified candidates should be currently enrolled in a bachelor’s degree or graduate program or in a short waiting period between undergrad and graduate programs / law school and/or bar admittance. Candidates should possess strong computer and research experience and demonstrate exceptional skills and competence in writing clearly, communicating effectively and organizing complex assignments. In addition, some programs prefer candidates working toward a Master of Social Work, Public Policy or law degree.
NCSL IS AN EQUAL OPPORTUNITY EMPLOYER.