General

Category: General

The US Government Accountability Office

The federal government is full agencies that go by well-known acronyms, like the FBI, CIA and DOD.  However, have you heard of the GOA?  GOA stands for the Government Accountability Office.  While not a sexy name, the GAO is an important part of the federal government.  As part of the legislative branch, the “GAO provides Congress, the heads of executive agencies, and the public with timely, fact-based, non-partisan information that can be used to improve government and save taxpayers billions of dollars.”  Their work is done at the request of congressional committees or subcommittees or is required by public law.  The Government Accountability Office is commonly known as the “congressional watchdog”.  When significant amounts of taxpayer money are found to be wasted or inappropriately spent, often the GAO is the first agency to notice.

For students looking for government internships, the GAO should be considered.  For the last two years, the GAO has ranked number one in the Partnership for Public Service’s Best Places to Work rankings among mid-size federal agencies.

In addition to internships, the GAO offers a Professional Development Program for recent graduates that focuses on developing entry-level staff knowledge, skills, and abilities to meet GAO’s mission through work experiences, training, and ongoing coaching and feedback throughout a two-year program. Staff are generally rotated among GAO’s mission teams or placed in staff offices. 

David Trimble from the Lawrence class of 1982 (Philosophy) currently works at the GAO and says working for the GAO is “in many ways it is the perfect fit for anyone that appreciates a liberal arts education.”

For more information, click here for details on GAO internships and here for more about the GAO Professional Development Program.

Internships and Fellowships with the U.S. State Department

For the many Lawrence students interested in our growing International Relations program, getting field experience is a very helpful complement to what is being taught in the classroom. If one is seeking that experience in Government, the U.S. State Department is the place to look.

The Department of State has numerous options available to students looking for hands-on experience in the world of international affairs. But the wide array of options can be dizzying to look through and understand. Luckily, the State Department recently added a page to their web site that groups all of their fellowships and internships in one place, two of which have already been written about on this blog (here and here.)

The State Department Internships/Fellowships page is divided into three sections.

The Programs section provides brief overviews of how the internship process works and a summary of the Pathways Program and Foreign Service Fellowships. The more robust Internships section is for current college students and provides a great deal of detail on the Pathways, Department of State, Foreign Service and Virtual Federal Service internships. The Fellowships section is for graduates and some current students and provides details on long-running programs like the Charles B. Rangel International Affairs Program, Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Graduate Fellowship Program, the William D. Clarke, Sr. Diplomatic Security Fellowship as well as newer programs like the Colin Powell Leadership Program.

Details on both internships and fellowships include descriptions of the positions/programs, eligibility requirements, compensation and benefit information, the application timeline, deadlines and more.

Be sure to bookmark the U.S. Department of State Internships / Fellowships webpage and refer back to it when looking for field experience in International Relations!

State of Wisconsin Student Diversity Internship Program

Every summer, the State of Wisconsin offers internships for students across culturally diverse groups, so they can experience the professional work environment of Wisconsin State Government. Since the inception of the program, the program has placed close to 4,000 students in internship positions across more than 30 state agencies and university campuses.

​The Student Diversity Internship Program provides students with valuable, paid work experience and training in various branches of state government over the summer break. Many interns have gone on to​ obtain employment in state government as limited term or permanent state employees.

To participate in the Student Diversity Internship Program, students must be 18+ years of age and be attending, have plans to attend, or recently graduated from a two- or four-year college or university, graduate program, or a vocational/technical school program.

Visit the State of Wisconsin Student Diversity Internship Program web site to see this summer’s openings!

American Bar Foundation Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowship

Undergraduate students considering a career in law already know that it’s hard to get hands-on legal experience such as internships if you’re not in law school. Luckily, there are a few programs that are designed to provide undergrads with the experience they seek. One such program is the American Bar Foundation (ABF) Undergraduate Summer Research Fellowship.

According to their web site, the American Bar Foundation (ABF) looks “for students students who demonstrate a strong work ethic and intellectual curiosity and who take initiative with mentors by asking questions and expressing a genuine interest in their research. Preference is given to candidates from underrepresented backgrounds, including but not limited to first-generation and low-income students and students of color.

This fellowship introduces undergraduate students to the rewards and demands of a research-oriented career in law and/or social science. It also provides guidance about the many career options under the umbrella of the legal profession. Each Fellow will be assigned an ABF Research Professor who will involve the Fellow in their research project and act as a mentor during the Fellow’s tenure. In previous years, Fellows have supported faculty members’ work by conducting archival research, creating literature reviews, and coding qualitative data collected from interviews and newspaper reports. In addition to partnering with a faculty mentor, Fellows will meet with other ABF faculty and affiliates.”

For more information, including pay, eligibility and the program application, visit the ABF Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship Program web site. The annual deadline to apply is in late January or early February.

Public Service, Social Justice and Non-Profit Fellowships

Are you dedicated to making an impact? Are you passionate about public service, social justice, or nonprofit work?

These fellowship programs have early-in-the-year deadlines and might be right for you. If you’re interested please reach out to Professor Claire Kervin at claire.e.kervin@lawrence.edu.

  • The Scoville Peace Fellowship provides recent college graduates with funding and opportunity to work with one of two dozen participating institutions in Washington D.C. Annual deadline is early January.
  • The Phi Beta Kappa Key Into Public Service Award connects promising liberal arts students with public service opportunities. Annual deadline is mid-late January.
  • Greenlining Summer Associate Program is a 10-week program for emerging social justice leaders. Associates learn about issues impacting California and the nation and manage research and advocacy projects under the direction of a Greenlining staff member. Annual deadline is late January.
  • UK Fulbright Summer Institutes are 3-to-4-week programs for students with no or little travel experience outside N. America. Explore the culture, heritage and history of the UK while experiencing higher education at a UK university! Options include “Arts, Activism, and Social Justice” at Bristol, “Climate Change and the Environment” at Exeter, and more. Annual deadline is early February.
  • FAO Schwarz Fellowships offer paid positions at leading nonprofit organizations. The Fellowships are designed to jumpstart your career as a leader of social change. Annual deadline is early-mid February.
  • Greenlining Institute Fellowship is an 11-month program offering hands-on policy advocacy experience and professional development to emerging leaders who are committed to equity and justice for communities of color. Annual deadline is early-mid February.
  • Humanity in Action Fellowships involve immersive study and community-based action projects exploring issues of social justice, human rights, politics of memory and remembrance culture, and civic engagement. Annual deadline is early-mid February.

Start building your résumé using VMock!

Lawrence University has partnered with VMock to help you create a powerful résumé and accelerate your career journey. VMock SMART Résumé platform leverages technologies like data science, machine learning, and natural language processing to provide instant personalized feedback on your résumé and interview based on criteria gathered from employers and global best practices – from anywhere, at any time of the day. 

Simply login into VMock dashboard, upload your résumé, and VMock will: 

  • Give you an aggregate résumé score to assess the strength of your résumé benchmarked against your own community peer group 
  • Provide you with résumé guidelines based on Career Center standards to ensure that you do not miss fine details and establish a great first impression 
  • Assess how well you have marketed your core competencies to showcase the right skill set reflected in academics, experience, service, achievements, etc. 
  • Give you line-by-line suggestions to improve your résumé content in view of your academics and level of experience 

VMock is designed to work with résumé from many different fields across various industries. Once you receive the detailed feedback, make relevant changes to the résumé and re-upload it to see the increased score and associated improvements.  

Don’t have a résumé, yet? No problem. Log into VMock and start creating a résumé from scratch.

Check out the VMock Video to learn more.

Oliver De Croock ’24, Student-Athlete at Lawrence University majoring in Economics and Career Peer Educator. Connect with me on LinkedIn.