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Women in Government Fellowship

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This program is designed to encourage Yale undergraduates to explore political careers by funding their participation in challenging internships with elected representatives in Congress or with elected or appointed officials in other political arenas. Proposed internships must be at least 8 weeks in length, and must include primary activities where students can see government and policy-making first hand. The $5,000 fellowship stipend awarded to Women In Government fellows may be used to cover living expenses for the duration of the unpaid internship.  Tuition to attend the week long Women’s Campaign School, a five–day intensive course at Yale Law School on the basics of running a successful political campaign, is also covered.  Women's Campaign School dates for Summer 2018: June 11 - June 15.  This award will also cover food, lodging, and transportation costs to and from the Women's Campaign School.

Application Deadline: February 22, 2018, 5pm EST.  Selected applicants will be invited to interviews, which will take place in early March 2018, before Spring Break.


Funding is open to Yale first-year students, sophomores, and juniors. Internships must include primary activities where students can see government and policy-making first hand.  Students who receive funding will be required to attend the Women’s Campaign School. Check with your employer to make sure that you’re eligible to be away from work during these dates.

Application Process

Students need to apply to various internships separately. This program is solely to fund the opportunity. Please see the resource section below for ideas on how to secure an internship.

The Women in Government application is available through the Student Grants and Fellowships database.  Search for "Women in Government" to get started. Applications are available starting December 1, 2017.  Applications are due: February 22, 2018.

Submitting an Application

Students are required to submit the following through the Student Grants and Fellowships database:

  • Fellowship application
    • Internship Description(s): Your internship does not need to be secured before the Women in Government Fellowship application deadline.  Because most government and government-related internships are not determined until middle- to late- spring, you may not have a secured internship by the fellowship application deadline. On your Women in Government application, you will be able to detail up to four different internships that you are asking the committee to consider when evaluating your application.  Please review the Women in Government website to learn which types of internships are acceptable for this fellowship program.
    • Essay: In the Women in Government Fellowship application, you will be asked to respond to a prompt that focuses on the lack of representation of women in government.  The selection committee recommends that applicants be thoughtful and authentic in their responses.  Resources on the state of women's political participation can be found here.
  • Résumé - A current résumé, including significant extracurricular activities, work experience, and leadership experience (one-page maximum). Your resume must be uploaded and submitted electronically.  Visit the Office of Career Strategy's website on creating a strong resume.
  • Transcript(s) - Yale Transcript and Transcripts from Other Institutions (if applicable).
  • Budget - Detailing the projected costs of your proposed experience.
  • Letter of Reference from a Yale Community Member (Faculty/Staff): One letter of reference from a Yale Community Member (Faculty/Staff) submitted electronically via the Student Grants Database. You will be able to solicit this letter once you begin your application. Letters are expected to be received prior to the application deadline. If a letter of recommendation is not received, that application is considered incomplete and will not be reviewed.

Quote: Serving in the immigration department allowed me to focus on one area and study relevant policies and regulations. As I consider my international policy interests, I see immigration policy as something I would be interested in pursuing in the future. Before the internship I saw immigration as a more abstract topic that does not have much relevance to my daily life. Now I see it as an integral part of America that often gets overshadowed by controversial statements by high profile individuals. I am excited to see where this interest may take me in the future and I credit this internship to helping spark my interest in this area.

Maddie Bauer, 2015 Women in Government Fellow

Advice on Choosing an Internship

Internship Resources

  • Women & Politics Institute - American University's School of Public Affairs' Women & Politics Institute Internship Bank is an online resource of opportunities including a section for Capitol Hill internships with Women in Congress
  • Opportunities in Public Affairs - Once you log in with your netid, you will receive a username and password. This will allow you to log in to the site and select the internships tab on the left hand side.
  • Leadership Directories - This resource provides personnel contact database of the institutional leadership of the United States, integrating 14 "Yellow Book" directories with information on more than 400,000 individuals leading U.S. government, business, professional, and nonprofit organizations.  In looking at potential employers, the directory allows you to build lists. For example, select “build a list”, “explore people” , “explore congress and staff by legislative issues”.
  • U.S. Senators Page - Allows you to search by State or Senator and you can easily link to their pages.
  • Yale Career Network - Connect with Yale alumni who are interested in networking with fellow alumni and students and may be working at your target organizations.
  • Friends Committee on National Legislation’s Summer Internships - FCNL interns work at the FCNL office in Washington, D.C. for six weeks over the summer to advance our witness for peace on Capitol Hill.  FCNL offers several unpaid summer internships that provide a broad introduction to federal policy, grassroots organizing, and nonprofit management.  Experiences vary depending on current projects.  Interns are encouraged to seek out and attend forums at think tanks during their internship with FCNL.  Flexible scheduling is available for interns with other jobs while in DC.
  • Congressional Internships - Students interested in pursuing internships with members of congress can explore to find the names, contact information, and websites for the collective body of legislators at

Quote: As a policy intern in Governor Raimondo’s Office, I conducted research, wrote memos, briefed the Governor, created presentations, and participated in interagency and nonprofit meetings. I worked on a wide variety of issues, including broadband, cybersecurity, climate change, criminal justice, education, food justice, healthcare, insurance, living wages, medical marijuana, paid sick leave, renewable energy, transgender rights, and voting laws. I also attended one of the Governor’s Community Conversations and Vice President Biden’s visit. Governor Raimondo talked to all of the summer interns about the responsibility to get involved in government and to make a positive change in our society. She made it clear that this is a particular duty for young women. She talked a lot about being a trailblazing woman, and how women and other underrepresented groups have an extra obligation to serve, to break down biases, and to lead the way for others to follow. She used to look up to Hillary, and now she is a Hillary for me and for my generation.

Sarah Siegel, 2016 Women in Government Fellow

Quote: The Women in Government Program has been absolutely phenomenal. I am so thankful for the program for so many different reasons: I have been energized by the mere purpose of the program, and so passionate about making sure that women in politics are supported like I have been; I have had the amazing opportunity to meet and become close with so many amazing, inspiring women who have taught me so much, provided me so much advice for my future, and supported me in all of my endeavors; I have learned so much technical information about running a campaign and being successful that I could never have dreamed of learning without the Women's Campaign School; and I have had the privilege of being able to live in Washington, D.C. for the summer to get hands-on experience and knowledge with working in the Federal Government - giving my all to learning and the experience, without having to worry about funding or supporting my cost of living. This program is endlessly valuable, and provided me with so much new insight, experience, friendships and mentorships that I know I will treasure for the rest of my life.

XinYuan (Michelle) Hu, 2017 Women in Government Fellow