MOST Policy Fellows

MOST policy fellows will provide much needed resources for Missouri General Assembly. Fellows will assist in scientific, rather than legal, research before bills are written, and also help to inform senators and representatives on benefits and consequences of pending statutes and regulations. Outside of the short legislative session, fellows will assist with building evidence-based research capacity and training workshops for legislators and staff, giving them confidence to address issues about which they feel passionate and better address the needs of their constituents.

Five fellows will be selected for the inaugural MOST Policy Fellows class. These fellows will each be assigned to a suite of committees in the Missouri General Assembly covering the following topics:

  • Life Sciences, Agriculture, and Conservation
  • Education and Workforce
  • Healthcare and Wellness
  • Technology and Engineering
  • Economics and Finance

Fellowship applications are accepted between January 15 and March 15 annually. The 2020 application period is now closed.


Fellowship Details

Eligibility: Fellows must hold a terminal degree (Ph.D. or equivalent) in science, technology, engineering, math, medicine, or related discipline (e.g., STEMM education). Candidates who do not have a terminal degree (e.g., M.S. in Economics) will be considered on a case by case basis . Degrees must be conferred by September 1 at the start of the fellowship year, but are not required at the time of application.

Term Length: Fellows will commit to a one-year fellowship term and will be encouraged to renew their fellowship for an additional one-year term.

Compensation: Fellows will receive a stipend of $50,000/year and benefit options will be provided through the University of Missouri. In addition to salary and benefits, fellows will also receive a $1,500 for professional development and moving expenses up to $1,000. All in-state travel associated with the fellowship program will be covered by MOST Policy Initiative.

Residency: Fellows from within Missouri and outside Missouri are encouraged to apply for the MOST Policy Fellows program. During the fellowship term, fellows will be asked to reside in Central Missouri (Jefferson City, Columbia, etc.).


Fellowship Schedule & Duties

We are excited to launch the MOST Policy Fellows program. Because this is the first fellowship class, the schedule and duties of the fellows are subject to change. We anticipate the following as a general outline.

September to December: Fellows will complete two weeks of in-depth training on science communication strategies, policy reading and writing, and legislative processes. During the training, fellows will also get the opportunity to travel throughout the state of Missouri to learn more about the different people and places they may be visiting during the fellowship program.

Following the training, fellows will attend events and network with stakeholders of their respective disciplines. Building relationships will be crucial for fellows to be treated as trusted messengers of scientific information during the legislative session. Ideally, these relationships will lead to fellows being called upon to provide scientific input while bills are drafted prior to the legislative session.

January to May: During the legislative session, MOST Policy Fellows will assist in adding scientific information into policy conversations through the following activities:

  • Writing “Science Notes” on pending legislation
  • Answering questions from legislators and staff
  • Validating evidence presented by constituents and interest groups
  • Building capacity for evidence-based policy making

June to August: Outside of the short legislative session, fellows will assist with building evidence-based research capacity and training workshops for legislators and staff, giving them confidence to address issues about which they feel passionate and better address the needs of their constituents.

Fellows will also be assigned to a special project over the summer, such as working for a special committee, governor’s task force, state agency, or municipal department elsewhere in Missouri. The assignment will be determined during the legislative session based on interests of the fellow and state needs.

Funding

The MOST Policy Fellows program is made possible by grants and contributions from the following organizations.