Congressional Policy Fellowship

ASGCT will select one member annually to participate in a year-long policy fellowship on Capitol Hill.

Applications for the Congressional Policy Fellowship are now closed. All questions should be sent to

Overview, Benefits, & Application

In partnership with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), ASGCT will select one applicant each year to participate in a year-long policy fellowship on Capitol Hill. Fellows will provide high-quality, science-based, independent guidance to federal policy makers and elevate awareness of the Society among policymaking circles. This policy fellowship is a truly unique learning and career advancement opportunity for a member scientist interested in policy development and application.

Fellows serve alongside congressional staff, bringing scientific rigor and expertise to the office in which they are placed. New to the policy world? You'll have time to learn! Every fellow will attend a two-week orientation organized by AAAS, covering the workings of the federal government and the key issues, institutions, and individuals involved in federal policymaking.

Job Duties

These will vary office to office, but may include: 

  • Briefing members of Congress and staff on scientific and technical topics

  • Meeting with constituents and special interest groups 

  • Writing issue and policy briefs, talking points, speeches, and press releases

  • Drafting and negotiating text for legislation

  • Staffing budget authorization bills from preliminary agency reviews to House-Senate conferences

  • Coordinating oversight investigations

  • Planning and implementing events in Washington and in congressional districts 

  • Organizing hearings 

At the end of the fellowship, fellows will be equipped to give back to other ASGCT members through educational presentations and by continuing to promote the science of gene and cell therapy among their new policy networks. The mission of ASGCT’s Congressional Policy Fellowship is to provide ASGCT members with a valuable opportunity to further their own professional development while simultaneously advancing the mission of the Society as a whole: to advance knowledge, awareness, and education leading to the discovery and clinical application of genetic and cellular therapies to alleviate human disease.

Important Dates

  • January 15, 2024: Applications close

  • March/April 2024: Interviews and fellow selection

  • September 1, 2024: Fellowship begins in Washington, D.C.

  • August 31, 2025: Fellowship ends

  • Fall 2025: Presentation opportunity at the Policy Summit

  • May 2026: Presentation opportunity at the Annual Meeting

Learn more about the eligibility requirements, application materials, and key deadlines in our overview and benefits document.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who can apply?

Applicants must:

  • Be a member of ASGCT and plan to remain a member in good standing for the duration of the fellowship. Not an ASGCT member yet? Take the first step. Submit your membership application at least five business days prior to the application deadline to allow sufficient time for processing.

  • Have a PhD or equivalent doctoral-level degree from an accredited institution at the time of application. The doctoral degree should be in one of the fields relevant to ASGCT’s mission such biological or biomedical sciences, health sciences, biochemistry, pharmacology, genetics and genomics, or related specializations.

  • Be a U.S. citizen.

  • Be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, which is necessary to participate in required in-person meetings on the Hill.

Federal employees are not eligible to apply.

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What is the fellowship term?

The fellowship is a 12-month learning experience beginning on September 1 and ending on August 31 of the following year. Individuals accepting a fellowship must sign an agreement acknowledging this year-long commitment.

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Do I need to live in Washington, D.C. during the fellowship?

The program requires all fellows to relocate to the D.C. metro area for the duration of the fellowship year. ASGCT will provide a moving stipend to assist with relocation costs if fellows need to relocate from more than 50 miles away.

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When will selected fellows be notified?

Finalist applicants will be invited to interview with ASGCT in early April and the selected fellow will be notified by late April.

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Which congressional office will I be placed in?

The fellow has total control over which congressional office or committee they choose to work in. The fellow is responsible for securing a congressional placement with assistance from the AAAS. ASGCT will have no input in the placement selection.

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What resources will be available to me during my fellowship year?

Every fellow will attend a mandatory two-week orientation session organized by AAAS on the workings of the federal government that will provide exposure to some of the issues, institutions, and individuals involved in federal policymaking. That orientation will take place in early September of the fellowship year. Following orientation, AAAS will offer assistance to all fellows in securing congressional office or committee placements. In addition, AAAS hosts monthly seminars, newsletters, and networking events for fellows’ benefit. Fellows will also be added to the AAAS alumni listserv and website.

ASGCT staff will be available to our fellow for the duration of their fellowship to provide support through monthly check-ins, access to cell and gene therapy experts, and exposure to ASGCT’s scientific and policy programing.

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Register for the ASGCT Policy Summit

September 23-24, 2024 | Washington, D.C.

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