About the Program
Legislative Internship Program Mission
Recognizing the need to provide educational opportunities not typically available to students in the traditional academic setting, the Connecticut General Assembly has established an internship program to acquaint students with both the formal and informal aspects of the legislative process.
Accordingly, the program seeks to encourage a high level of personal interaction between legislators and interns, who serve as aides to their assigned legislators. A major objective of the program is to prepare interns to perform the necessary support services desired by the legislators for whom they are working; i.e. bill analysis and tracking, spot and in-depth research, drafting of news releases and speeches, liaison work, constituent casework, etc.
Click here to see what previous have said about their experience.
The Connecticut General Assembly Internship Program is administered by the statutorily created Committee on Legislative Staff Internships (CGS-2-84), along with the Internship Committee Director.
The Committee is a bi-partisan body with bi-partisan co-chairs, who alternate between the respective houses in each successive term. Their principal responsibility is the development and oversight of Connecticut General Assembly (CGA) internship program and policies.
Since 1980, the Committee has retained the services of an administrator to serve as Director. The Director is responsible for the implementation of the Committee’s policies, administration and facilitation of the Legislative Internship Program (LIP), coordination and council of interns, as well as monitoring of intern performance and evaluation.
The Legislative Internship Program follows an experiential learning model. This model is supported by an academic program where students are driven to research and reflect in order to place their experience in a broader conceptual framework, as well as supplemental programming designed to engage students in individual goal setting toward career development.
Incoming interns are expected to participate in an extensive training process consisting of a formal two-day Orientation Program, as well as both required and optional training opportunities. Interns will become familiar with the building and begin to acclimate to the work environment, receive an overview of the legislative process, an introduction to research techniques and resources, and other information necessary for the student to function as an intern. Interns will be examined on the required training concepts.
The academic programming continues throughout the session and includes a series of projects designed to familiarize the intern with components of the political process that have an impact on the operation of the Connecticut General Assembly. Required assignments include the submission of reflection papers, interviews, and the completion of a three part bill tracking project which spans the term. In addition, individual advisement, speaker forums and fieldtrips to varied “industries” are coordinated based on student input and identified career interest areas. These supplemental opportunities are voluntary and offered to enhance student goal fulfillment.
Program Duration and Qualifications
Our Legislative Internships run during the spring academic semester to correspond with the Connecticut General Assembly Legislative Session. The program year begins in late January with a required two-day Orientation Program (traditionally the third full week of the month), and runs through early May. The Orientation Program is in advance of the intern’s official first day with their legislative office, which will vary based on the individuals established schedule.
All undergraduate students who are attending two or four year institutions of higher education in Connecticut, and state residents attending out-of-state colleges, are eligible to apply. Minimum program qualifications include*:
- be 18 years of age or older by program start
- have competed 20 credits by program start
- have a minimum 2.5 grade point average
- be registered for a course (varies by institution) in order to receive credit for the internship
Both full-time and part-time internships are available. Generally, full-time interns are expected to work five, eight hour days a week. Part-time interns are expected to work two, eight hour days a week. For additional information, click here to see the job description for our Legislative Interns.
*Since the credit requirements of participating institutions of higher education may vary, each intern should discuss individually, with his or her college or university, any specific qualifications, along with registration and academic requirements necessary for participation in the program through their school. Students can earn from twelve to fifteen credits for a full-time internship, and six to nine credits for a part-time internship.
Selection and Placement
Selection is made by the Committee on Legislative Staff Internships. The Committee will interview candidates and decide who will be offered an internship for the coming legislative session. Appointments will be announced following the December interviews.
Although students from all disciplines are considered, preference is given to upperclassmen, and students whose experience and academic background offer some preparation for the work they will undertake. In addition, some consideration is given to contributions which the applicant has made to his or her college and community, as well as the applicability of the internship to future career goals.
Interns are assigned to Legislative Leaders, Committee Chairs, Ranking Members and individual legislators. A workable and mutually beneficial relationship between legislator and intern is a major goal of the internship program.
If interested in applying, you should do the following:
- Contact the designated Legislative Internship Program Advisor on your campus. Each school has different registration requirements in relation to eligibility criteria and credit. You must work with this advisor through the application process. (Click here to see the list of Advisors)
- Complete and submit the online application. The application for the coming program year is posted in the preceding September.
- a cover letter expressing your interest in applying for the internship;
- a one page resume that outlines your educational background, honors or recognition, work experience, activities, special skills, etc.;
- a transcript from the college that you currently attend. Unofficial transcripts are acceptable. Applicants must complete at least 20 college credits by January 2016. The Internship Committee may require an updated transcript at the beginning of the internship if Fall 2015 classes are needed to meet this requirement.
You will need to upload the following three components as part of your application:
Applications submitted without all three of the components above will be considered incomplete and will not be accepted.
- two letters of recommendation from people who know you well and can provide an accurate view of your strengths and weaknesses;
- A copy of the transcript you provided with your program application.
Campus Advisors will then complete and submit a Campus Advisor Recommendation Form for each student applicant. This form will become part of your application. Without this form, your application will be considered incomplete and will not be accepted by the program.
Unless stated otherwise, all materials are due to your designated On-Campus Advisor in advance of the November 1st application deadline to allow for appropriate follow-up on their part.