Internships

Internship Application

Kansas Legislative and City of Topeka Intern Program

City of Topeka Internship

The City of Topeka and/or office of the Mayor, Topeka, Kansas, may have one internship opening for the spring semester. The internship will begin when the Washburn semester starts and end when the Washburn spring semester ends. The intern will be expected to commit to 10-15  hours a week working in a city office or the Mayor’s office. Interns will be paid a stipend ranging from $1500-$3000, depending on the hours worked. If you want to apply for the Topeka internship, fill out pages 3-7 of this application form and also submit a resume along with your completed application and writing sample. You may apply for both the Topeka internship AND the Legislative internships.

Legislative Internships

The Kansas Legislature will have internships available for the Spring Legislative Session. Any student who is enrolled in a secondary or post-secondary education institution and will be earning credit for their learning experience or is making academic progress in their educational course of study is eligible to apply. No specific major is required, but strong oral and written communication skills, and a basic understanding of government and the legislative process, are helpful.

Internships will begin the second week of January on the first day of the Spring Legislative Session and end in April. A mandatory Intern Orientation will be held on the Thursday prior to the beginning of the legislative session.  Each intern will be assigned to a specific legislator by an Intern Coordinator. Placements are based upon applicant’s experience, partisan preference and interests. Interns are required to attend a minimum of 12 days (96 total hours or more) during the legislative session.  Specific hours required for the internship will be agreed upon by the intern and his/her assigned legislator.  Course credit for the internship will be determined by each intern and his/her respective educational advisor and may have additional requirements. Legislative internships are non-paid positions; however, legislative interns who complete program requirements are eligible for up to $600 in mileage reimbursement. If you want to apply fill out pages 3-4 of this application form and also submit a resume along with your completed application and writing sample.

Washburn Clyde Hill Leadership Internships

This internship program is exclusive to Washburn University and was founded by former Speaker of the Kansas House of Representatives Clyde Hill. Clyde Hill interns will be paid a stipend ranging from $1000 - $3000 (depending on the office in which the intern is placed). Hill interns are placed in the Republican and Democratic leadership offices in the Kansas House and Senate. Hill interns are expected to work regular hours during the session, usually 15-20 hours per week but possibly more depending on the nature of the internship. Some successful Hill interns in the past have ended up with full-time jobs after graduation in various state and national government offices. If you want to apply for a Hill internship, you will need to fill out pages 3-7 of this application form and also submit a resume along with your completed application and writing sample.


APPLY NOW: Internship Application 


About the Internships

Application Information & Deadlines

4th Friday of October for all internships

Applicants will receive a confirmation letter from the Kansas Intern Program Coordinator when the application process is complete and an email from Dr. Beatty with details on the course they are taking. Applicants who are not chosen for the Clyde Hill and/or Topeka Internship will still be eligible to partake in the regular intern program. Applicants showing strong potential for doing quality work can expect to be placed with a legislator and will receive an assignment letter after applications are reviewed. The integrity and quality of the Kansas Legislative Intern Program is important, therefore the Intern Coordinator reserves the right to terminate any intern who consistently fails to show strong effort and produce quality work.

Send all application materials together to:  Dr. Bob Beatty (bob.beatty@washburn.edu) via email.

Important note: When sending via email, attach application materials to email. Writing sample and resume MUST be in WORD format.  Application packets can also be sent to or dropped off at the Department of Political Science (Room 215, Henderson Hall, Washburn University, 1700 College Avenue, Topeka, Kansas 66621). Application packets must be COMPLETE or they will not be accepted.

Goals & Internship Expectations

The combination of each intern’s expectations, interests and legislator assignment produces a unique experience; however, each intern can expect to gain experience in these areas:

  • Legislative Support: Responsibilities include attending committee and caucus meetings, researching issues, and tracking legislation.
  • Constituent Services: Responsibilities include drafting letters, researching constituent concerns or requests, and preparing material for weekly newsletters.
  • Office Support: Responsibilities include filing, answering the phone, preparing mail, and welcoming visitors from the district. Generally, the legislator’s secretary is responsible for these duties; however, on occasion interns will be expected to help.

Working with your legislator you should be able to experience and do most of the following tasks:

  • Write a bill brief  
    • Write constituent correspondence
    • Write a press release      
  • Aid constituents in casework
    • Track legislation
    • Understand the basics of floor debate and voting
  • Understand General Orders and the Committee of the Whole with an understanding of the committee process.
  • Develop a policy proposal and understand key points of the most significant legislative issues
  • Governmental relationship between various officers (Governor, Attorney General, Speaker of the House, etc.)
  • Familiarity with key tenants of state issues: agriculture, alcohol (direct shipments, taxation), education finance, eminent domain, gaming, health care (Medicaid), insurance, and taxes.

Program Completion & Course Credits

All interns will have to meet the following requirements to successfully complete the Kansas Legislative Internship Program:

  • Attend Intern Orientation
  • Work at the Capitol a minimum of 12 days (96 hours or more)

Course Credit: Students taking PO 309, PO 307, or HN 202 will have other requirements as specified in the course syllabi in order to complete the course and receive a grade. Students will take PO 309 for regular internship and PO 307 for Clyde Hill or Topeka Internship. HN 202 can be taken as an Honors course.

WTE: Students fulfilling a WTE with the internship will need to consult the Washburn requirements for either the community service WTE or the scholarly/creative WTE.