Undergraduate Public Policy Intern

About TCP

The Constitution Project (TCP) is a program of the Project on Government Oversight (POGO), a nonpartisan, not for profit organization in Washington, D.C. The mission of TCP is to safeguard constitutional rights and values threatened by our government’s criminal justice and national security practices, and to strengthen our system of checks and balances.

TCP’s current issue priorities are:

  • To protect privacy and Fourth Amendment rights threatened by government surveillance practices based in emerging technologies and outdated legal doctrines;
  • To ensure the lawful and humane treatment of terrorism suspects;
  • To rein in government overreach in criminal prosecutions by safeguarding the Sixth Amendment right to counsel and encouraging prosecutorial professionalism;
  • To expose and address profound defects in the capital punishment system;
  • To promote policing practices that protect individual rights without sacrificing public safety; and
  • To make government more transparent and accountable, in particular by improving congressional oversight.

We conduct strategic advocacy and public education to advance these issues.

Our approach: Sometimes TCP leads campaigns for reform. Other times we fill a gap in broader coalition efforts. Sometimes we speak out publicly. Other times we approach policymakers behind the scenes. We avoid a one-size-fits-all approach because what works in one case might not in another. At all times we work with experienced advocates and litigators to ensure that our efforts are useful and sustainable.

Our toolbox: Our talented staff is armed with a variety of education and advocacy tools. We can produce first-rate research and analysis. We can engage policymakers directly, through private meetings, legislative briefings, testifying at hearings, and writing letters. We can work through the press, by holding news conferences, educating editorial boards, or reaching out to individual journalists. We can advocate in the courts, through amicus briefs. And we can speak directly to the public, by placing op-eds, engaging on social media, and organizing in-person events.

Responsibilities

Interns are involved with all aspects the work of The Constitution Project. She or he will work closely with the attorneys heading our national security and criminal justice programs to research, draft, review, and proof various publications. Past interns have assisted with TCP reports and statements, op-eds, congressional testimony, letters to the editor, and social media posts. She or he may also be requested to assist with the logistics and execution of Constitution Project events, including panel discussions and press briefings. Interns are also asked to occasionally attend and monitor  hearings other events, representing the Project where appropriate.

Interns will learn about the legislative process, how policy initiatives are publicized and promoted in Washington, and about the work of a variety of public policy and interest organizations in Washington and around the country. Students with an interest in law, politics, and government and a commitment to civil liberties are encouraged to apply. Duties include some administrative work.

Qualifications

  • Have strong research and writing skills.
  • Be willing to work with experts and advocates of all partisan affiliations.
  • Have some prior volunteer or internship experience.
  • Be willing to work a minimum of 10 weeks for 15 hours per week during the school year, or 10 weeks for 35 hours per week during the summer semester.

Credit

TCP will support those applicants who are seeking academic credit through their home institution.

To Apply

To apply, please send the following to David Janovsky at djanovsky@pogo.org:

  • A cover letter describing your interest in the position
  • A current resume
  • One writing sample: 3-7 page essay/report from a recent course on any subject.
    Additional writing samples may be requested. ­

Applications for spring 2019 will be considered on a rolling basis.

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