Internship in Government Relations

Internship Period/Type

This internship will run for 10 weeks. Interns are required to work 20 hours each week and will be paid $150 per week.


The intern will report to The Heartland Institute’s government relations director.


The internship will involve a wide variety of government relations responsibilities, including research on policy issues; outreach to elected officials; database development; and event marketing and promotion. Among the specific tasks that will be assigned to the intern during this period:

  • Research on policy issues. This will require conducting research on issues within Heartland’s policy focus (budget and tax, telecom, school reform, health care, energy and
  • environment, and finance); assisting legislative specialists in drafting Research & Commentaries, letters to the editor, and opinion-editorials.
  • Outreach to elected officials. This requires alerting – through phone calls and emails – elected officials of Heartland’s policy work. Inters will also assist the government relations team in recruiting legislators to join the Legislative Forum through a direct mail campaign.
  • Assist with the promotion Heartland events. Assist the government relations team in determining appropriate venues and topics for policy events to be held throughout the country; draft announcements and invitations for allies; work with government relations director and Art Department to develop event invitation; and promote events to state and/or local elected officials and their staff.
  • Administrative: Heartland tracks the performance of its government relations efforts closely. The intern will be expected to perform some data entry tasks (database updates on addresses/phone numbers for elected officials and assembling educational and promotional materials to be sent by the Government Relations Department each week.)
  • Out-of-office work: The intern will be expected to attend Chicago-area events hosted by Heartland to assist with registration, site setup, and other activities. Depending on interest and availability, the intern may also be asked to travel with other staff to represent Heartland at events sponsored by others.

Generally, it is expected that the intern will spend one-half of his/her time in research and writing activities; one-quarter in telephone work; and one-quarter in administrative. That mix may change, however, based on the intern’s abilities and Heartland’s needs during the internship period.

Expected Skills

The intern is expected to have:

  • Knowledge of public policy issues and free-market thought.
  • Significant experience and fluency with Word Perfect or Word for Windows and the ability to manage mail-merge processes.
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills, combined with a professional demeanor.
  • Attention to detail and ability to make reasoned judgments.
  • Experience with Web research, search engines, and email. Heartland uses both Internet Explorer and FireFox browsers, and Outlook Express is Heartland’s preferred email program.


Email your resume, cover letter, and three writing samples to Wanda Davis at [email protected].

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