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Put yourself in the heart of US policy action

03 August 2016

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The ANU Congressional Research Fellowship Program (CRFP) places outstanding Australian honours and graduate students, and recent graduates, from Australia’s Group of Eight (Go8) universities, in the offices of United States Senators who serve on the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations.

For emerging policy professionals and advisers, getting hands-on experience with the United States Senate Committee on Foreign Relations and Armed Services is a career-making move.

For up to three current postgraduate students or graduates from The Australian National University (ANU) that dream could become a reality in January 2017 through the Congressional Research Fellowship Program (CRFP).

Organised by ANU in partnership with the American Australian Association and Virgin Australia, the three-month funded placement in Washington DC immerses Fellows in the heart of global policymaking.

Former Crawford School Master of Public Policy student, Olivia Shen, worked for Senator John McCain.

“The program is a fantastic opportunity to see American politics and policy-making in action, Olivia said.

“I worked in a US Senator’s office for three months, attended a host of think tank and NGO events, and produced a research project on completion of the internship.

“The type of work I did was different every day; I’ve drafted letters to constituents, written reports on committee hearings and conducted research on pieces of legislation the Senator McCain was sponsoring.

Prue Pickering, who worked for Senator Kirsten Gillibrand in the CRFP Program, said it was “an absolute hive of think-tank activity.”

“It was a great time of year to be in the US capital and my first few weeks were jam-packed,” Prue said.

“One of my research assignments was to prepare a brief for the Senator’s office on a Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs hearing that was addressed by former US Secretary of State, Henry Kissinger.

“On top of my work in the Senate, I was fortunate enough to attend a handful of events that Minister Julie Bishop spoke at including a breakfast hosted by the Australian Embassy and the Women’s Foreign Policy Group.”

The program covers the cost of a return trip economy class airfare from Australia to Washington DC, accommodation in Washington DC, and US J-1 visa application costs for the selected Fellows.

Applications for this highly-competitive program close at 5pm AEST on Monday 29 August 2016. The CRFP Application Form, along with a CRFP Information for Applicants document, can be found here.

Applicants can contact the CRFP Program Coordinator here: crawford.fellowships@anu.edu.au

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