TechCongress Launches 2021 Scholars Program to Recruit Top Talent For Members of Congress
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TechCongress Launches 2021 Scholars Program to Recruit Top Talent For Members of Congress

Startup nonprofit TechCongress is on a mission to bring more of the industry’s brightest technologists to Capitol Hill in 2021.

The organization — which launched back in 2016 — was created to offer more tech expertise in politics as it has become an increasingly popular talking point in recent years.

To further combat this issue, TechCongress has opened up applications for its 2021 Congressional Innovation Scholars Program, which will place individuals among the top tech decision-makers in the U.S. government to help reshape our society — starting with members of Congress.

According to its website, the purpose of the program is to bridge the divide of tech knowledge and experience between Silicon Valley and our nation’s capital to reach more favorable outcomes.

The recruiting process for the upcoming program includes placing technologists to serve as tech policy advisors to top Members of Congress — including offices like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), and the House Judiciary Committee.

Responsibilities for the Congressional Innovation Scholars Program include:

      • Work with TechCongress to choose a placement with a Member or Congress or Congressional Committee and report directly to a senior staffer (like a Legislative or Staff Director) in that office from June 2021 through April 2022.

      • Perform duties similar to other Congressional staff by applying your experience in technology to a variety of work, including:

          • Researching relevant policymaking (on issues like encryption, autonomous vehicle regulations, facial recognition privacy, health IT, election security, disinformation, open data, cyber/data security and many others)

          • Helping educate Members and staff about these issues.

          • Writing legislation.

          • Preparing for and organizing Committee hearings, markups, or investigations.

          • Building coalitions with partners and other groups.

      • Support TechCongress by writing about and presenting on your experience periodically, and represent TechCongress and the Congressional Innovation Scholars at meetings or events.

TechCongress’ program pays a $60,000-annual equivalent stipend for fellows and offers other benefits as well including reimbursements for healthcare, fellowship travel, and relocation.

Previous participants in the program have accomplished notable work such as:

      • Working on the House Judiciary Committee’s Antitrust Subcommittee report on Big Tech
      • Passing the OPEN Government Data Act into law
      • Securing changes to defense procurement policy to allow startups to better compete with big government contractors

Applications for the 2021 Scholars Program are open now until 11:59 p.m. ET on Feb. 5, 2021.

TechCongress is also holding an upcoming call on Jan. 27, 2021  (11 a.m. – 12 p.m. PT/ 2-3 p.m. ET) to share more about the program.

For more information on how to apply and qualify for the program, click here.