The Center for Life Beyond Reed

Elizabeth Ducey Summer Internships in Public Policy

The Ducey Internship Program has been established to provide students with the opportunity to spend a summer working and researching full-time in a policy making organization. Most policy-oriented internships are unpaid, which makes it difficult for some students to participate in them. The Ducey Program provides $4,000 annually to selected Reed students who have been accepted as unpaid interns at policy-related agencies. Students are responsible for making arrangements with the agency involved prior to applying for the Ducey Program in the spring. Acceptable agencies include not only actual governmental offices, but also partisan and issue-oriented organizations aimed at influencing public policy. Returning students are expected to write a report describing their internship activities and make a public presentation to the Reed community during the following fall semester.

The nature of the internship is extremely important. Ducey Interns are expected to participate in activities that reflect and enhance their education.  While the internship may involve some routine clerical work, the majority of the intern’s responsibilities must involve participating in and observing the organization’s activities that pertain to public policy.  Activities such as staffing tables or canvassing will not qualify nor any work that involves piece-rate compensation.  Interns are also prohibited from directly soliciting funds, although participating in and observing fundraising and financial policy discussions is entirely appropriate.

Students must send a letter of inquiry to the organization where they would like to intern.  This letter should request the organization’s permission and encouragement, and should include a copy of this official Ducey brochure apprising the organization of the nature of this internship.

Applicants are responsible for making contact with the organization in a timely manner, discussing the terms of the internship and arranging for the organization to write a letter of support to accompany the student’s application.

The Ducey Internship Program is administered by the Reed Department of Political Science, but is open to economics majors and other Reed students with a strong interest in public policy. Eligibility is limited to Reed students who will be returning the next academic year. Students who are seeking more information and organizations that would like to participate or have other questions about the Ducey Internship Program should contact Emily Hebbron (, the faculty coordinator for Political Science. 

List of organizations where students completed their Ducey internship.

Terms, selection and assessment

The fellowship supports full-time summer employment and will be dispersed in two installments over 10 weeks, plus the final smaller installment once the interns have submitted an assessment of their experiences.  After completing their internship, students will write an assessment to be given to Emily Hebbron and present their work to interested students and faculty members the following academic year.

The Ducey Fund will support the intern during their summer employment.  The amount is adjusted annually and is intended to be the equivalent of full-time employment.  Since many Duceys are served at locations requiring long distance travel and professional dress, a $700 allowance might be awarded where appropriate. Interested applicants should fill out the budget request portion of the application form. This allowance is for out-of-pocket long distance travel or professional clothing, on a reimbursement basis. Consult with the Ducey Coordinator in making travel arrangements. Other costs including local travel, office space, supplies or supervision are the responsibility of the sponsoring organization and should be clearly stipulated in the proposal. The use of Reed College facilities, normally available to students over the summer without charge, should be specified in the application proposal.

The Selection Committee will be composed of the Reed Department of Political Science faculty. Successful applicants may hold the Ducey Internship only once, but remain eligible for the Corbett or Goldhammer Summer Collaborative Fellowships.  

Applicants are responsible for making contact with the organization in a timely manner, discussing the terms of the internship and arranging for the organization to write a letter of support to accompany the student’s application.

Application procedures

Application forms (download here) and copies of successful proposals from recent years are available from Emily Hebbron, the Political Science faculty coordinator in Eliot 204B.  Applicants are encouraged to review past successful proposals before beginning the application process.

Completed applications must be delivered to Eliot 204B or emailed to Emily Hebbron (, no later than 12 noon on March 30, 2018.  Late applications will not be considered.  Applicants will be informed of the Selection Committee’s decision in early April. Applications should include: 

  1. The completed and signed application form (download here)
  2. A written proposal from the student of no more than 1,000 words.  The proposal must specify:
    • The student’s background and how it relates to the proposed internship.
    • What work the student will perform—the nature of the internship and how it enhances a Reed education.
    • How receiving the internship relates to the student’s future plans.
    • Work experiences the student has had that demonstrate an ability to carry out independent projects. 
  3. A letter from an authorized spokesperson for the sponsoring organization, such as the executive director. The letter should indicate that the organization:
    • Supports the student’s proposal—what the student proposes to do is feasible and is important to the organization.
    • Accepts the terms of the internship and will supply necessary resources and support not provided by the Ducey Fellowship (please list resources in detail) and acknowledges that no other funds are available for this purpose.
  4. A letter of recommendation from a sponsor at Reed. The recommendation should focus less on academic ability than on demonstrated work habits (such as timeliness, ability to assume personal responsibility and ability to work with others). The student must make this clear to the writer of the recommendation letter well in advance.
  5. A current resumé.

Ducey Washington, DC Summer Internship

 The Ducey DC internship is the same as the Ducey Internships except that it must be served in the Washington, DC area. The purpose of the Ducey DC internship is to ensure that students have the opportunity to participate in policy-making at the national level.

Student eligibility, qualifying institutions, selection, terms and application procedures for the Ducey DC are all the same as for the Ducey Internships, described above.  Students interested in the Ducey DC Internship should make it clear that their internship would be in the Washington, DC area.  Otherwise, no special procedures are involved, and Washington, DC-based internship proposals can also be funded as Duceys.  There is no limit on the number of Ducey Internships served in the Washington, DC area.

Elizabeth C. Ducey

Elizabeth Ducey believed that a Reed education and practical policy experience are highly complementary.  Once a Washington, DC staff assistant to Senator Richard Neuberger of Oregon, Ducey had a lifelong interest in socially progressive politics and social policy issues, as well as a long-time interest in Reed College.  Ducey went to Smith College as a 1915 graduate of the Catlin Gabel School and lived for 25 years on a Sauvie Island farm.  She was active as a conservationist and gave generous philanthropic support to many local organizations, including Reed’s art and music associates, the Portland Art Association and the Friends of the Columbia River Gorge.

She established the Ducey Fund at Reed College in 1953, beginning a tradition of enriching the College through the promotion of lectures on national, local and regional affairs.  The Elizabeth Ducey Intern-ships extend her legacy to touch the lives of students and to encourage them with the same passion for policy, community and politics that shaped her life.

The Fautz-Ducey Fund

The Fautz-Ducey Washington, DC Internship Fund was created in 2002 through the generosity of two women.  Elizabeth Fautz ’35 left a bequest to the College in 2001 to benefit the Political Science Program at Reed.  Fautz had a wide range of interests including health care, education, world peace, human rights, libraries and politics.  She was active in public policy and retired as a labor economist with the United States Department of Labor. Fautz's bequest funded the Washington, DC internship for a decade; the department continues the spirit of this bequest in the form of the Ducey Washington, DC Internship through the Elizabeth C. Ducey Political Science Endowment fund. 

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