The Wharton Public Policy Initiative (PPI) has some funding available to help support students who accept an offer for a public policy summer internship at a government entity or non-profit policy research organization in Washington, DC, that otherwise would be unpaid or come only with modest compensation. This includes internships at any of the executive branch or independent agencies, on Capitol Hill, and at think tanks or research organizations that focus on economic issues.
For the summer of 2019, Wharton PPI expects to be able to provide funding to around twenty students—a significantly smaller number than in previous years. For internships that are unpaid, Wharton PPI can provide up to $500 per week to undergraduate students for up to 12 weeks, for a maximum of $6,000 for the summer. Wharton Graduate students are eligible for up to $1,000 per week for up to 12 weeks, for a maximum of $12,000 for the summer. (Unfortunately, we cannot accept grad students from other schools). To be eligible for funding, undergraduate internships must be at least 8 weeks in duration; graduate internships must be for at least 6 weeks. Please note that students who, at the time of application, have not yet received their undergraduate degree but have matriculated for a graduate degree will be considered as undergraduates with regard to funding.
Students receiving some compensation (or funding from other sources) that falls short of the $500/week threshold for undergraduates or the $1,000/week threshold for graduate students may apply to Wharton PPI for supplementary funding to make up the difference.
Because of the limited number of internships that Wharton PPI can support, students are advised to also seek funding from other sources. For instance, Career Services at Penn has a summer funding program. And starting this year, Student Registration and Financial Services is able to provide summer funding to highly aided undergraduates who are rising juniors or seniors. Students should explore all possible avenues for summer funding.
Please also note that funding awards constitute taxable income. If you are a U.S. citizen, taxes will not be withheld from your stipend, but you will receive a 1099 tax form from the University of Pennsylvania at the end of the year, for tax reporting purposes. If you are an international student, the University will withhold 30% of your stipend amount for tax purposes, barring any tax treaties that may exist with your home country. International students can find information about Penn’s tax policies at the Office of the Comptroller.
Our aim is to disburse these summer awards as lump-sum payments at the start of the internship.
In exchange for funding, recipients will be expected to:
- Write one blog post during the summer on an economic public policy topic (around 1000 words in length) for the Wharton PPI website;
- Serve as an “ambassador” for Wharton PPI in DC, practicing good public relations and maintaining a level of professionalism both on and offline including on personal social media platforms;
- Participate in networking and professional development activities organized by Wharton PPI;
- Complete an evaluation at the end of the summer about your internship experience.
The review committee will be reading funding applications in two rounds. The first round has an application deadline of Monday, April 1, and is restricted to WHARTON STUDENTS ONLY (undergraduate or graduate). The second round has an application deadline of Monday, April 15, and is open to all students in any of Penn’s undergraduate schools, in addition to Wharton undergraduate and graduate students. We cannot accept applications from graduate programs outside Wharton.
Any questions about the funding process should be directed to Ben Schneider, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Apply for Funding
If you are having trouble viewing the application, the form is also available here.
Please note: It is not possible to save the application as you fill out the form. Therefore, we highly recommend saving your answers in a separate application, such as Word or Text Edit, before beginning the application.
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