CVD Summer 2004 Interns & Staff with Fmr. Presidential Candidate John Anderson
Founded in 1992,
FairVote is recognized as a national leader in electoral systems reform. Our
mission is based upon the belief that electoral systems can be reformed at all
levels of government in order to increase vitality in our democracy, ensure
fairer representation of our society’s diversity in elected bodies, and assist
local state and national governments in their efforts toward solving the complex
issues facing our nation.
We maintain a
comprehensive website with a wide array of public education materials. We
provide legal assistance in voting rights cases, and hold workshops in
communities and at conferences around the United States. Throughout the nation
our experts are called upon to provide analysis and commentary to all types of
media outlets including CNN, NPR, FOX, etc.
Because we are a
relatively small organization -- we have two full-time staff members in our
Takoma Park, Maryland office -- interns assume a great deal of responsibility.
We have real flexibility in having interns work on areas they are most
interested in -- be it research, activism, website, writing or creating
internships to undergraduate students, graduate students, and law students. We
have also had recent graduates intern with us.
We offer internships at
all points during the year, and have no fixed deadlines for applying. We offer
unpaid full-time and part-time internships, although most summer internships are
full-time. Our summer internships are the most competitive. We are willing to
work with interns to meet requirements for receiving academic credit and/or
outside funding for internships.
We accept resumes and
writing samples at any point during the year, which you may send to us at:
FairVote-The Center For Voting and Democracy, 6930 Carroll Ave., Suite 610,
Takoma Park, MD 20912. You may contact us with any questions at: 301-270-4616;
you may fax information to us at: 301-270-4133; or you may e-mail it to [email protected]
Below are a number of
internship job descriptions, outlining a number of intern positions. Note that
these are guidelines for internships and that interns may take on
responsibilities for more than one internship position. CVD staff members are
assigned to each internship program area, and interns work closely with those
staff members. On occasion, there are opportunities for interns to develop their
own project areas outside those outlined below.
Please specify in your
cover letter the internship position(s) that interest you. All the below
internships are based in our national, Takoma Park, Maryland (Washington, DC),
office apart from the Bay Area Internship, which is based in Berkeley, CA.
- IRV for America-
in this program area would work towards the promotion of instant run-off
voting throughout the country. IRV is a voting method that corrects
the defects in plurality elections and two-round runoff elections, the two
most widely used voting systems in the country. Primary duties for an internship in this area include election research & analysis
and outreach to college student governments. An internship in this program would
working to implement instant runoff voting for student government elections in
colleges, universities, and high schools, and would involve organizing, making
contacts on campuses, and assisting other student leaders. Some aspects of the
project include preparing sample op-eds for student newspapers; creating news
releases for campus newspaper editors, and working with national student groups
to gain support.
Empowerment Project -
We are active in seeking fair racial and minority representation, and this area
of our work focuses on full representation voting systems as solutions to voting
rights and redistricting issues. Interns
will work within the civil rights
and voting rights communities; including with chapters of the NAACP, ACLU,
MALDEF, LULAC, Asian American and Hispanic organizations and many others.
Interns in this area would also do outreach work and elections research and
analysis, as well as comparing elections in the United States with how systems
are used in other countries, conducting research on organizations that are using
proportional representation and research election issues like plurality winners
in cities, states, and other areas.
- Right To Vote
Center For Voting and Democracy is actively lobbying to gain support for H.J.
Res 28, a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution to add a right to vote.
An intern with the Right To Vote Initiative will help in lobbying efforts
for this amendment and assist in efforts to promote other electoral reforms such
as same-day voter registration, provisional ballot standardization and
improvement to voting machinery. The intern will have the opportunity to
develop advocacy materials, draft press releases, help organize state-based
lobbying groups and build support through outreach. As a benefit the
intern should walk away from this experience with a better understanding of the
legislative process and the constitutional reform movement.
- Election Research
Center - An
intern in this program would work on researching the competitiveness of
elections, various aspects of presidential races, and demographics and
partisanship in redistricting. See our report on "Monopoly Politics"
as an example of some of this kind of work.
Internships in this division are based substantially on analyzing
election results to identify problems, as well as make projections.
- Assistant to the
Interns in this are would work closely with FairVote executive director Rob
Richie on a range of program management and development work. On
development, the position concentrates on fundraising; identifying new sources of funding;
new grants; exploring resources at the DC Foundation Center and identifying
potential individual donors. Interns working in this area have the opportunity
to help develop and assemble project proposals for foundation funding, as well
as help tend to our membership base.
great skill to develop for anyone interested in non-profit work. Excellent experience
for someone interested in working more in the non-profit world.
In seeking to spread our message of electoral reform, the Communications
Assistant will help forge important connections to influential individuals and
groups across the political spectrum. Interns will conduct outreach to both major
and minor political parties, "good
government" groups, local and state government officials, election
administrators, and more. In
addition, they will compile
press contacts, maintain our database, write press releases, assemble
publicity materials, organize press conferences, and assist with mailings to
local and major media.
This is a position open to creative thought and new ideas for FairVote's
overall communications strategy.
Assistant- Interns will assist the Communications Director with
technical tasks including web maintenance, graphic design, and production of
printed publicity materials. Applicants should possess a solid understanding
of Photoshop, MS Access, MySQL, and web-development languages and tools. The
Website / E-Organizing Assistant will develop critical technical skills in
addition to gaining exposure to policy issues, and will learn much about
maintaining the Communications infrastructure of a nonprofit organization.
- Legal Interns-
This internship position is for law students with an interest in the Voting
Rights Act, redistricting, and other areas of election law. Areas of work
include legislative drafting, statutory and state constitutional analysis of
obstacles to reform, tracking and analyzing the impact of recent decisions on
our work, researching pending voting rights lawsuits, developing our Voting
Rights Act, Section 2 amicus brief, and more relating to voting rights and
We also have opportunities for legal interns in the
California Bay Area, to assist with legislative drafting, and with analysis
of the implications of the California Voting Rights Act.
- Bay Area Intern- FairVote has been closely involved in the move to
IRV in San Francisco, as well as with communities such as Berkeley and Davis
considering a move to full representation or instant runoff election
systems. The Bay Area intern would assist with outreach, research, materials
development and lobbying relating to our work in California. This internship
provides an excellent opportunity to get an overview of the entire range of
our work, as well as insight into the functioning of a