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Honors College

UTSA Legislative Scholars Program

The Program

Created in September 2004, the UTSA Legislative Scholars Program is a collaborative initiative between Texas State Representative Ruth Jones McClendon and The University of Texas at San Antonio. Coordinated by the UTSA Honors College, the program provides undergraduate and graduate students with the opportunity to serve as interns in the Texas House of Representatives during regular legislative sessions. Students having an interest in public policy and a commitment to public service, as exemplified by Representative McClendon, are encouraged to apply.

Program Details

The UTSA Legislative Scholars Program will begin with several days of orientation prior to the opening of the 2015 session of the Texas Legislature. The 2015 UTSA Legislative Scholars will receive a stipend and will be responsible for their own housing, transportation, and other expenses while residing in Austin.

Academic Credit

Interns must be enrolled at UTSA and receive academic credit for their internship experience. Interns are responsible for ensuring that they are enrolled in appropriate internship and independent study courses for the Spring Semester 2015 at UTSA. For example, interns may earn up to 6 hours of internship credit and 6 hours of independent study credit during the internship period.

Responsibilities

Attendance is mandatory at an orientation provided by the UTSA Honors College in collaboration with Representative McClendon’s legislative staff and House of Representatives’ personnel, which will be conducted prior to the opening of the 140-day legislative session in January 2015. The interns will be assigned to work in the offices of members of the Texas House of Representatives throughout the session. The internship requires the ability to perform and manage a number of diverse activities, including writing a variety of documents, analyzing proposals, performing research, and corresponding and meeting with stakeholders. Good judgment, independent thinking, and a high degree of ingenuity, resourcefulness, and professionalism are critical to the successful management of an intern’s responsibilities. Interns are to live in Austin during the legislative session.

Eligibility

To be eligible for the UTSA Legislative Scholars Program, students must have completed at least 60 undergraduate hours and be enrolled for the fall 2014 semester at the UTSA. Students from any academic major are eligible. Exceptional skills in writing, composition, and computer literacy are required.

Application Process

Applications for the UTSA Legislative Scholars Program will be here in August, 2014 available online or by calling the UTSA Honors College at (210) 458-4106.

Completed applications must be accompanied by:

  • a writing sample (essay context to be determined)
  • an official transcript
  • verification of enrollment
  • proof of financial aid (if applicable)
  • two letters of recommendation, one of which should be from a professor familiar with the academic ability of the applicant
  • If one hails from State Representative District 120, then provide explanation and documentation

Deadline

Applications for the UTSA Legislative Scholars Program will be due in Fall, 2014. For questions, contact Dr. Richard Diem at richard.diem@utsa.edu or (210) 458-4106.