The Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellows Program

Internships in Government Service



The Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellows Program intends to become the premier undergraduate government service experience.  The Program’s mission is to expose students to government work with real life impact.  While not all Schaeffer Fellows will pursue a career in government, the program provides an opportunity for participants to become engaged citizens and develop an informed view of government.  Schaeffer Fellows are selected from four universities: USC, Princeton, UC Berkeley, and Harvard.

The Leonard D. Schaeffer Fellows Program encourages talented sophomores and juniors to experience careers in government service through high-level internship placements with elected officials and agencies at the federal, state and local levels.  Schaeffer Fellows represent a diversity of backgrounds, political perspectives, and academic disciplines.  Common among them is their interest in learning more about public service and the role of government.

Schaeffer Fellows are exposed to government experiences which include but are not limited to interacting with government officials and constituents, tracking legislation, conducting legislative research, drafting constituent letters, assisting with social media, contributing to daily office operations, and developing lasting professional networks with government staffers and other interns.

In addition to their full-time internship, Schaeffer Fellows participate in a series of organized educational programs, cultural events, weekend outings, and gatherings with local Schaeffer Fellows from other universities.  Additionally, Schaeffer Fellows are paired with a USC alumnus in a related field who serves as a mentor during their experience.

2016 Schaeffer Fellow placements included:
Washington D.C.
Congressmember Karen Bass (District 37)
Congressmember Xavier Becerra (District 34)
Congressmember Lucille Roybal-Allard’s Office (District 40)
House Foreign Affairs Committee
Central Intelligence Agency
National Defense University, Center for Applied Strategic Learning
Representative Jared Huffman (District 2)

Sacramento, CA
CA State Senator Tony Mendoza (District 32)
CA Assemblymember Cristina Garcia (District 58)
CA Assemblymember Reggie Jones-Sawyer (District 59)
CA Assemblymember Young Kim (District 65)

Los Angeles, CA
Mayor’s Office of Economic Development
Representative Brad Sherman (30th District)

Kuala Lumpar, Malaysia
United Nations Office of High Commissioner for Refugees