Skip Navigation

Internships & Fellowships

Skip Side Navigation

Internship and Fellowship Opportunities

The Department of Political Science, in partnership with the Carl Albert Center, offers students several opportunities to participate in engaging programs that enhance the theoretical lessons of the classroom. Between Ewing Fellowships served in Washinton, D.C., community-oriented Capitol and Community Scholars, and the Carl Albert Undergraduate Research Fellows there are ample ways to gain real-world experience.

Want to intern for a different organization? No problem. If you find an internship and would like to coordinate academic credit, please fill out and submit the following application to our Internship Coordinator, Professor Ann-Marie Szymanski at ams@ou.edu.

Department & Carl Albert Center Programs

Number Given: 4 | Amount: $5,000 grant for living and travel expenses

The Cortez A.M. Ewing Public Service Fellowship program annually sponsors summer internships in Washington, D.C. Ewing Fellowships include: $5,000 grant for living and travel expenses, additional scholarship assistance, if needed, and an academic credit option. Students receiving the awards serve as interns in congressional offices, government agencies, interest groups, and think tanks for a period of 8-10 weeks. Any undergraduate student (sophomore standing or above) is eligible to apply, but students must be returning to campus the following year.

Learn more:
Ewing Fellows

Applications and reference forms are generally due in early October. Further information can be obtained from Professor Tyler Johnson at tylerjohnson@ou.edu

During the Spring semester, the Carl Albert Congressional Research and Studies Center offers the Capitol Scholars Program, a public service learning opportunity for the spring semester. Approximately 15 OU undergraduate students are placed in politics- and/or policy-related internships in and around the Oklahoma Legislature. The program provides a unique learning opportunity for undergraduate students who experience first-hand the process of public policymaking in the state of Oklahoma. The internship experience is enriched through weekly seminars and briefings with state leaders.

Capitol Scholars are placed in assignments with the Legislature, state agencies, interest groups or the media, and are expected to work about 16 hours a week. Capitol Scholars develop professional experience and skills, gain insights into the Oklahoma legislative process and policy issues, and obtain intimate knowledge of the legislative session and state government.

The Center also partners with the University of Kansas in an exchange program where students from each university alternate yearly visits to each other's state. The students visit the capitol and meet with elected officials and other participants in the political system. This allows scholars to expand their experience, and also compare and contrast the political system in a neighboring state.

P SC 4033: Capitol Scholars: A Service-Learning Course (3 hrs) Friday Afternoons
Students are placed in institutions and organizations that run the policy-making process for the State of Oklahoma. Each student is required to work 16 hours per week. The internship assignments are in such places as:

  • Oklahoma House
  • Oklahoma Senate
  • Legislative liaison offices of state agencies
  • Interest groups and associations
  • Media outlets

The class meets on Friday afternoon for the weekly seminar.

Enrollment
Students are required to enroll in P SC 4033 (Capitol Scholars), and enrollment in P SC 3910-002 (Government Internship) is optional.

Questions? Contact the Carl Albert Center Director, Mike Crespin at crespin@ou.edu

Capitol Scholar Application

During the Fall semester, the Carl Albert Congressional Research and Studies Center offers the Community Scholars program, a public service learning opportunity for the Fall semester. Up to 10 undergraduate students from OU are placed in community-based internships with nonprofit organizations or local government entities in and around Norman and Oklahoma City. The Community Scholars program provides a unique learning opportunity for undergraduate students who experience first-hand the dynamics of working within community-based organizations. The internship experience is enriched through weekly seminars and briefings with leaders from the nonprofit sector.

Community Scholars are placed in assignments with local governmental agencies, various nonprofit organizations, and other community-oriented agencies. Internships require a minimum of 16 hours of work per week and may include night meetings. Community Scholars develop professional experience and skills, gain insights into the dynamics of community organizations and learn how nonprofit organizations function and interact within their broader communities. Duties may include proposal writing, direct client services, fundraising and marketing, policy research, grassroots organizing and outreach, and program management.

Internship
Previous Community Scholars have been placed with a variety of organizations including the City of NormanUnited Way of Norman, the Center for Children and FamiliesLegal Aid Services of OklahomaCleveland CountyBridges, and Food and Shelter to name just a few.

Each student is required to work 16 hours per week at their internship site. Students may, at their option, enroll in three additional hours under P SC 3910-002 (Government Internship) or other departmental internship courses. Community Scholars requirements meet other internship requirements without the commitment of additional work hours or additional in-class time.

P SC 4023: Community Scholars: A Service-Learning Course (3hrs) Friday Afternoons

One of the unique aspects of the program will be the opportunity, on a weekly basis, to come together with the other Community Scholars for a seminar that is tailored to the program. This academic component will feature information about nonprofit and community leadership in an informal setting. Frequent guest speakers from various community-based organizations will join the class.

Costs
There are no separate program fees. Students must enroll in P SC 4023; the additional three hours of internship credit are optional. Students may be eligible for a $1,000 stipend for completing the internship if funds are available.

Questions? Contact the Carl Albert Center Director, Mike Crespin at crespin@ou.edu

Community Scholar Application

Number Given: 6 | Amount: $1,600 paid in four installments to Bursar Account
Program Starts in the Fall Semester

HANDS-ON RESEARCH EXPOSURE: The Carl Albert Center will work to match up to six students with faculty mentors pursuing original research projects. During the fall and spring semesters, the students should expect to devote eight to ten hours weekly to research tasks coordinated with their faculty mentors. Students are required to turn in an academic paper based on their research by the end of the spring semester, and are strongly encouraged to present their research at OU Undergraduate Research Day or elsewhere.

Other key components of the program:

  • The stipend (paid in 4 installments) is $1600.
  • Students may arrange with their faculty mentor or Dr. Crespin to take 3 hours of independent study or directed research.

In the past, projects have regularly led to co-authored papers for students with their mentor professors and, on occasion, to publications. Several of the Center's undergraduate research fellows have had the opportunity to present their research at political science conferences held in Washington, DC, San Antonio, Chicago and Atlanta. Some travel funding is available for fellows to attend conferences to present co-authored work. Fellows have also won prizes for their work at OU Undergraduate Research Day.

Questions? Contact the Carl Albert Center Director, Mike Crespin crespin@ou.edu

Each academic year, two to three undergraduate students are selected to pursue the Carl Albert Center’s efforts on-campus related to civic education and political engagement. Fellows earn a $1600 stipend for the academic year ($800 per semester). Hours per week vary, with some light weeks and some heavy weeks (i.e. the week of an election). In addition to ongoing efforts to register students to vote, Civic Engagement Fellows pursue civic engagement projects of their own. Past individual projects have included, among others, high school student voter registration, developing a Norman Youth Council, and developing programs to engage women in politics.

The Center pursues these and related activities as a member of the National Campaign for Civic and Political Engagement. The National Campaign is a consortium of 21 institutions pursuing projects in civic engagement. It is staffed by the Institute of Politics in the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. To gain a flavor of the activities in this area, interested students and others are asked to read the following summary of our activities for the National Campaign.

For more information, please visit the Carl Albert Center website. Applications are generally due in April for the following academic year.