This year 87 young Ukrainians received the certificates for participation in the Internship Program. The certificates were awarded by Deputy Secretary General of the Verkhovna Rada Dmytro Markov and U.S. Chargé d’Affaires in Ukraine Eric T. Schultz. This year marks the 17th year of operation of the Parliamentary Internship program and the 4th year of the Executive Internship program, both through the support of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).
Director of the Internship Alumni Association Interns’ League Valeriya Sobakar who completed the program in 2009-2010 also greeted the interns completing the program this year and expressed her thanks to the Government of the United States, USAID and the Staff of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine for providing support to the program through its first 17 years.
During the past eight months, students and recent graduates from almost all regions of Ukraine worked in 28 parliamentary committees and departments as well as in five ministries of Ukraine and one state agency. During the internship, interns took part in drafting laws, organized public hearings, committee meetings and round-table discussions; they studied subjects like public policy analysis, gender policy, rules of procedure, legislative mechanisms and law drafting. Interns also met with prominent Ukrainian politicians, decision-makers and foreign experts on a weekly basis. Each year, almost half of those completing the Internship program continue their careers with civil service and public service, many of whom join the staff of the Verkhovna Rada.
A History of Success:
The Parliamentary Internship Program was founded by the United States Association of Former Members of Congress and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine in 1995 with funding through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID). In 2000, the program administration was transferred to Indiana University through the Parliamentary Development Project for Ukraine, and since September 2008 it has been implemented by Ohio State University through the Parliamentary Development Project II under contract with Indiana University and funded by USAID.
During 17 years of the Parliamentary Internship Program’s operation, 1,199 young specialists have completed their internship with committees and departments of the Verkhovna Rada, and in executive branch offices. Nearly one third of those completing the program continue working for the Verkhovna Rada, other government institutions or local authorities; another 25 percent are employed by commercial and international organizations, 17 percent are engaged in organizations of civil society (NGOs, think tanks, media and academia), and 16 percent continue their education. The program broadens public knowledge of legislative and policy-making activity and allows for an injection of fresh personnel to the parliament, opening doors to public administration for young specialists.
To ensure sustainability for the future, in 2009 the Interns’ League was formed to promote the program and to work with the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine and executive branch offices. The Interns’ League secured sponsorship for 17 interns for 2011-2012.
Last updated: January 14, 2015