LEE is a nonpartisan, nonprofit leadership development organization working to end the injustice of educational inequity by inspiring and supporting a diverse set of leaders with classroom experience to engage civically and politically.
The Policy & Advocacy Summer Fellowship connects LEE members with high-impact policy and advocacy leaders and organizations focused on education, children, youth and communities for an eight-week, full-time placement.
The fellowship was founded in 2012 and has over 800 alumni. Every summer, we partner with organizations nationally to place over 100 fellows.
Policy and Advocacy Summer Fellows have shown a demonstrated interest in serving students and families through a career in policy, advocacy, organizing, and plan to transition to full time work in the field within the next 1-2 years after completing the program.
In addition to their full-time placement work, LEE provides ongoing support to fellows during the summer through regional trainings, coaching, and optional online courses about policy and advocacy skills.
Consider hosting a fellow
Are you seeking support in your organization for a special project or to provide extra capacity for your team to achieve your goals?
Host a Policy & Advocacy Summer Fellow!
Host organizations provide fellows with opportunities to contribute to meaningful work and create space for professional growth and development. By hosting a fellow, you are contributing to the development of a future policy or advocacy leader.
Who are Policy & Advocacy Summer Fellows?
Fellows are a diverse group of emerging leaders with varied backgrounds, life experiences, and skill sets that include:
Professional and/or graduate school experience
Data collection, analysis and synthesis
Issue Advocacy, coalition building
LEE has a strong commitment to supporting the leadership of communities historically underrepresented in public leadership. In 2020, our fellowship cohort was 70% people of color, 80% women, and 35% first-generation college students.
Example Policy and Advocacy Summer Fellowship Projects
A fellow working at an advocacy organization in Alabama researched and wrote a brief on how to recruit and retain teachers who identify as millennials. The brief summarized best practices and presented recommendations for schools and districts on how to get and keep these teachers in the classroom.
A fellow working with Baltimore City Public Schools supported the drafting and roll out of Baltimore City Schools new strategic plan, Blueprint: Building the Next Generation. In this role, she was directly involved in setting the big picture plans of the district that she teaches in.
A fellow working at a think tank in Washington, D.C., authored a brief that synthesized and summarized charter school financial data. The brief outlined trends in revenue and per-pupil spending, as well as made recommendations for clarifying the financial information provided by charter schools. The brief was published by the host organization and referenced by local media.
Your contribution as a host
To ensure a high-quality experience for both fellows and hosts, we ask host organizations to provide each fellow with the following:
A defined project or set of projects with clear deliverables that is substantive, meaningful, and provides direct experience in policy or advocacy (please, no ad-hoc projects or sporadic support on existing projects)
A full-time workload (40 hours per week) for the fellow for eight weeks
Designated on-site workspace, or technology needed to work remotely
A dedicated supervisor who can meet with and provide feedback to the fellow regularly throughout the summer (e.g., weekly)
Opportunities to gain exposure to and skills in education policy- or advocacy-related work
Opportunities to gain exposure to the organization’s priorities and build networks within the organization (e.g., attending staff meetings, participating in key meetings and events, interacting with staff at all levels)
A program fee of commensurate with your organization’s budget (max. $3500).
Fellows should spend at least 70% of their time on a substantive policy- or advocacy-related project and a maximum of 30% of their time on more administrative tasks.
Become a host
For summer 2021, LEE has instituted a two-step host application process:
Step One: We ask interested partners to submit an interest form using the button below. This form asks for basic logistical questions, an organization description, and information regarding ability to contribute toward the cost of hosting a fellow (NOTE: not being able to pay does not preclude organizations from hosting, but we do use this information to help in our program budget forecasting). The deadline to apply is February 15, 2021.
Step: Two: Starting in January and into February, LEE staff will follow up with your organization to confirm your organization’s intent to host, ability to cost share, and will share an MOU to confirm your participation as a host this summer.
Step Three: Beginning in March, LEE staff will follow up with your organization to request the proposed project for your summer fellow. Please keep in mind that we expect hosts to provide a defined project or set of projects with clear deliverables that is substantive, meaningful, and provides direct experience in policy or advocacy (please, no ad-hoc projects or sporadic support on existing projects).
In April, we will email you with the resume of a fellow we think will be the right fit for you. We ask that you reach out to your fellow within 48 hours of receiving their resume, and schedule a time to connect with them within two weeks of receipt so that decisions are made by April 23, 2021. More information about this process will be included in the Host Onboarding booklet you will receive along with your MOU.
Watch this video of a panel of 2020 PASF Hosts reflecting on their experiences last summer!