Template for Creating a Remote Internship Program on Your Campus
Overview–Why create a remote internship program?
In our current political climate, there is so much energy on college campuses for action and involvement, but often it is hard for students to know how to get involved in meaningful work.
A remote campaign internship program, consisting of part-time remote internships for students on campaigns across the country, provides a tangible and meaningful way for college students to work directly for a campaign without needing to leave their college campus.
How to Start
- Figure out who on your team is leading the program
- Figure out how many fellows you want to have
Criteria for choosing a campaign
- Competitive Race: Utilize the Cook Political Report, Politico articles, New York Times articles, and Sabato’s Crystal Ball to find some of the most competitive Senate and Congressional races across the country.
- Youth Electoral Significance Index: Utilize this resource from the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement at at Tufts University’s Tisch College of Civic Life to find districts where young people can have a particularly high influence on the outcome of the elections.
Outreach to Campaigns (before outreach to students)
- How to begin outreach:
- Connections: If you know someone on a campaign or in a Democratic party office, this is the most effective way to spark a relationship.
- Be in touch with Blue Future: Send us an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we can work with you to connect with a campaign.
- Research campaigns, then cold emailing: Find campaigns that you like and cold email their campaign with whatever contact you can find.
Email Template: Once selecting a number of campaigns you are interested in partnering with, use this format to send emails to the campaigns.
My name is Timothy White, and I am the Elections Coordinator of the Yale College Democrats. We are now working to put together our fellowship program for the spring, and we saw your campaign in AZ-1 and are very excited about it. We ran the internship program for the first time this year in partnership with gubernatorial, congressional, mayoral, and Virginia House of Delegates races; it pairs campaigns with politically-engaged Yale students through an unpaid, remote internship. We coordinate the selection and training of the students, so it’s convenient and cost free to the campaigns.
Would you be interested in having a few interns this spring involved to support your press, fundraising, research, or other departments?
After an email saying they are interested, or they want to hear more, or they definitely want to partner, this was my second email:
That is great news! In the past, we have selected remote internships in these areas:
- Communications – developing social media content, press clips, writing speech/op-ed/press release content
- Finance – donor research, writing fundraising emails
- Research – opposition research, writing policy white papers, researching partner organizations
- Field – textbanking, reaching out to other groups to get involved in campaigns’ field efforts
- Graphic Design – pretty cut and dry; we didn’t have many of these positions previously, but I know some campaigns could use someone who can help develop digital graphics
Which types of interns would you want, and how many of them? We will be sending out our application in the next week or two, and then should have interns selected, trained, and ready to start work by around the beginning of February. We are envisioning the interns’ workload at about 4 hours a week, given that they are also full time students.
Thanks, and I look forward to working with you all!
Yale College Democrats