Joint Staff Offices
Legislative Internship Program
7th Floor, Rachel Jackson Bldg.
Nashville, TN 37243-0186
Phone (615) 741-3299
Christy Behnke - Director
The Tennessee Legislative Intern Program was established in 1972 to provide Tennessee College and University students with an opportunity to work and learn in a hands on legislative environment. Each year 70 to 80 students from around the state participate in this program to learn about leadership responsibilities as well as develop legislative process skills. The interns assist legislative offices with their Legislative activities and work functions.
Who is Eligible?
Juniors, Seniors, and Graduate Students in law, political science, history, administration, social work, economics, sociology, journalism, and related fields are eligible for this program.
Selection is based upon academic qualifications (including a 3.0 and above GPA), each applicant's expected potential for professional research and a variety of other job assignments in connection with the work of the General Assembly, and for successful personal interrelationships in the environment of a legislative session.
Interns will be appointed for the 2015 session to serve from January 12 until May 1, 2015. The appointment period will not be the same as the quarter or semester calendar. Any student applying for the program must be willing to commit for the entire time of the internship.
***NOTE - The Tennessee General Assembly does not currently have a summer internship program. Our program is for the Legislative Session only.
A stipend of $350 per week will be paid to each intern, plus reimbursement for travel at the rate of .47 per mile of authorized travel between the intern's home institution and Nashville, limited to one round trip per month. A one-time advance payment of $350 will also be granted for each intern for relocation or adjustment purposes. If there is any change in the amount of the stipend paid to each intern, as a result of the meeting of the Sponsoring Committee, the students will be notified prior to their arrival.
The number of hours of academic credit granted to each student differs. To find out how many hours of credit you may obtain by participating in this program, please contact your faculty representative ( see list below)
Interns will be assigned to legislative leadership offices and committees and will be expected to devote full time to their legislative duties during the term of their appointments, adapting to the legislative schedule. Duties will vary from office to office, but will include bill analysis, constituent work, research and general office work.
Interns will be expected to attend weekly meetings usually held on Mondays or Fridays.
Projects, Tours and Guest Speakers
The intern class participates in various projects and tours. Some samples of tours are, a maximum-security prison, the State Capitol, the Bicentennial Mall and The Tennessee Supreme Court. Past projects included the Great Strides Project for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and collecting food for the Second Harvest Food Bank. Some of the guest speakers included Chief Justice Gary Wade and TBI Director Mark Gwyn.
Each year the intern class plays the Legislators in a game of basketball.
How to Apply
Interested students should contact the official faculty representative on their campus ( see list of faculty reps.) to get application materials. October 24, 2014 is the deadline for receipt of completed applications for 2015. Final decisions are made before Thanksgiving.
State Universities - Faculty Representatives
|Austin Peay State University||Dr. Chris Tecklenburg||(931) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|East Tennessee State University||Andrew Battista||(423) 439-6628||BATTISTA@mail.etsu.edu|
|University of Memphis||Ebony Dawkins||(901) email@example.com|
|Middle Tennessee State University||Dr. Mark Byrnes||(615) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Tennessee State University||Dr. Brian Russell||(615) email@example.com|
|Tennessee Technological University||Dr. Lori Maxwell||(931) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|University of Tennessee, Chattanooga||Dr. Christopher Horne||(423) email@example.com|
|University of Tennessee, Knoxville||Dr. David Folz||(865) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|University of Tennessee, Martin||Dr. Christopher Baxter||(731) email@example.com|
Private Colleges and Universities - Faculty Representatives
|Belmont University||Dr. Vaughn May||(615) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Bethel University||Heather Stone||(731) email@example.com|
|Bryan College||Marica Merck,
Dir. of Marketing and Career
Dr. Kara E. Stooksbury
|Christian Brothers College||Neal Palmer||(901) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Cumberland University||Dr. Russ Cheatham||(615) email@example.com|
|Ronie McPeak||(615) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|David Lipscomb University||Dr. Marc Schwerdtemail@example.com|
|Fisk University||Dr. Alexander Arthur||(615) 329-8661|
|Freed-Hardeman University||Dr. Stephen H. Morris||(731) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|King College||Donna Felty||(423) 652-4752|
|Knoxville College||Dr. Marry H. Whaley|
|Lane College||Virginia Crump||(731) email@example.com|
|Lane College||Dr. Linda J. Theus||(731) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Lee University||Dr. Steve Swindle||(423) email@example.com|
|LeMoyne-Owen College||Dr. Denita Hedgeman||(901) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Lincoln Memorial University||Larry Thacker||(423) email@example.com|
|Martin Methodist College||Bill Rutherford||(931) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Maryville College||Dr. Rusty Winchester
|(865) 981-8216(865) email@example.com,
|Meharry Medical College||Nikki Ballentine||(615) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Milligan College||Dr. Robert Hall|
|Peabody College/Vanderbilt University||Dr. Vera Chatman||(615) email@example.com|
|Rhodes College||Dr. Mark Pohlmann||(901) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Southern College||Dr. Kris Erskine||(423) email@example.com|
|Tennessee Wesleyan College||Dr. Chris Schutzfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Trevecca Nazarene University||Dr. Leroy Pepper||(615) email@example.com|
|Tusculum College||Mr. Leonard K. Bradley||(423) 636-7498|
|Union University||Dr. Sean Evans||(731) firstname.lastname@example.org|
|The University of the South||Andrea C. Hatcher||(931) email@example.com|
|Vanderbilt University||Dr. Yollette Jones||(615) firstname.lastname@example.org|