Carnegie Mellon University

The J. Steele Gow Political Internship Fund at Carnegie Mellon University

The J. Steele Gow Political Internship Fund was established in 1965 to make awards to undergraduate students to support summer internships in Washington, DC, in order to observe and analyze the operations of practical politics in the offices of members of Congress from Western Pennsylvania; in the executive and administrative offices of the federal government; and in the national offices of the political parties.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • Undergraduate student at Carnegie Mellon University
  • Returning as a full-time student in the fall semester following the summer internship in Washington, DC
  • Undergraduate academic record has included at least one course in political science. Preference is given to students pursuing a major, additional major, or minor in the Institute for Politics and Strategy (IPS).  
  • Western Pennsylvania resident

Core Components:

  • Gow Interns are provided with a stipend of $7500 and a University Pass (UPASS) to use the DC Metro at no cost for the duration of the summer internship.
  • Gow Interns will complete a summer internship of 8-12 weeks in length in Washington, DC, in the offices of members of Congress from Western Pennsylvania, in the executive and administrative offices of the federal government, or in the national offices of the political parties.
  • Gow Interns are enrolled in Tomorrow’s Professionals, a six-week remote summer seminar series. The 3-unit pass/no pass course is designed to facilitate students’ deliberate thinking about professionalism, so that they can: begin to practice it upon entry into their respective internships and avoid decisions or behaviors that could hamper their success, build their unique brands, identify opportunities to excel, and ensure overall excellence in their careers.
  • Gow Interns are expected to attend informal in-person seminars on policy topics and organized events while interning in Washington, DC. Seminars and events are coordinated through Carnegie Mellon’s Institute for Politics and Strategy.
  • After completing the summer internship, students must provide a summary of their internship experience that includes reflections on internship learning outcomes, personal growth, professional development, and future career interests.

Applications for the Gow Political Internship Fund are due by February 15.  Once selected, IPS will work with the selected students to secure an internship.  Students may begin applying to internships prior to selection in the program but an internship need not be confirmed in order to apply for the Gow Political Internship Fund. Students must take an active role in the internship search process.

Students are responsible for identifying and paying for their own housing in Washington, DC, although general housing information is provided by the program.

Application Requirements:

  • Steele Gow Political Internship Fund Application Form (Google form to which your resume, cover letter, and transcript will be uploaded)
  • Resume (we highly encourage you to have it reviewed by the Career and Professional Development Center)
  • Sample Cover Letter that highlights your interest in an internship in the offices of members of Congress from Western Pennsylvania; in the executive and administrative offices of the federal government; or in the national offices of the political parties.
  • Unofficial CMU Transcript (downloaded from SIO)
  • One letter of recommendation from a CMU faculty member should be emailed to cmuwsp@andrew.cmu.edu. Letter should be on letterhead and saved in .pdf format. Letter should be addressed to "To Whom It May Concern" and speak broadly to your application for an internship in Washington, DC. The letter should address your academic performance, ability to work in varied academic settings, ability to work independently, and writing skills. The recommender should also comment, if knowledgeable, on your extracurricular involvement, service, and leadership experience. All letters of recommendation, along with an endorsement from the university, will be later forwarded to each internship site where you submit an application.