STEAM Fellowship Program, Sponsored by the Entertainment Software Association

Organization Overview
The CBCF Congressional Fellows Program was created in 1976 in order to increase the number of African Americans working as professional staff in the U.S. Congress. The Congressional Fellows Program offers public policy training to young professionals by providing them with an opportunity to work on Capitol Hill.

As part of the CBCF Congressional Fellows Program, the STEAM Fellowship represents a partnership with the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) that serves as a 12‐month policy training and leadership development program that targets early‐career policy professionals who are committed to advancing and expanding their knowledge in public policy issues affecting STEAM-related fields (i.e., science, technology, engineering, the arts and math). The STEAM Fellow will have the opportunity to work in the office of a CBC Member in addition to serving on a congressional committee to gain exposure to U.S. policy debates. Throughout the year, the STEAM Fellow will have the opportunity to attend leadership development seminars, complete a community service project, participate in policy forums and produce policy papers. During the first 6 months, fellows are placed in a congressional office and gain invaluable experience as they represent the member at briefings, stakeholder meetings, and similar official events; conduct quality research; write speeches, opening remarks, and other written work products as assigned; research and provide policy recommendations on relevant issues; recommending co-sponsorships of or amendments to legislation to the Member; monitor legislative activity on the House or Senate floor; and handle long-term and short-term legislative planning for the Member of Congress. During the last 6 months, fellows transition to a congressional committee. The committee placement complements their experience in a Member’s office and provides fellows with a full view of the legislative process, including overseeing a bill move from the committee to the floor; recommending strategies and tactics on bills and positions; and writing and reviewing legislative memos. The Congressional Fellows Program provides a unique opportunity to gain first-hand knowledge of Congress and policymaking through fellowship placement in the Senate, House of Representatives, and other select offices. Fellows also attend an intensive orientation and enjoy an array of enrichment activities throughout the fellowship year.

Eligibility Requirements
Disciplines: Preference will be given to candidates with a graduate or professional degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM), and/or the intellectual property or copyright law fields. Candidates must demonstrate a strong interest in the intersection of STEAM and public policy and a commitment to creating opportunities for people of color in STEAM-related fields.

Selection Process
Interested and qualified applicants should complete all fields in the online application and submit a cover letter (2 pages maximum) as well as a short resume (2 pages maximum). The cover letter should explain the applicant’s interest in a specific fellowship, how the fellowship fits into the applicant’s career plans, and the attributes or experience that would make the applicant highly effective in this position. Finalist interviews will be conducted via webcam. Any incomplete or late application packets will not be reviewed.

Supplemental Questions
  1. Essay 1: You are working in the office of a congressional member as a subject matter expert in your respective profession. Draft a memo to your congressional member discussing three policy areas that you deem most critical to the advancement of the black community, why your representative should prioritize these items on his/her agenda, and how s/he can create awareness on these issues. Be sure to cite your sources. [1,000 words maximum]
  2. Essay 2: Choose a bill that you find most relevant to the black community in the last three congressional sessions. Discuss the current status of the legislation, the key members involved with the issue, and the potential or current effects of the legislation on the black community. Be sure to cite your sources. [1,000 words maximum]
  3. Essay 3: Explain your interest in public policy and STEAM and how a focus on this intersection will advance your career plans. Also address how expanding opportunities in STEAM can increase the career pipeline for people of color in both the public and private sectors. [500 words maximum]