The Legislative Fellows Program (LFP) is sponsored by the U.S. State Department, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. For Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova, Russia, Turkey and Ukraine it is administered by American Councils for International Education: ACTR/ACCELS.
Initiated in 2005 under the auspices of the Legislative Education and Practice (LEAP) program, the LFP affords promising young professionals from Georgia, Russia, and Ukraine the opportunity to gain practical experience in, and exposure to, United States government. The knowledge and interest of these young Eurasian professionals in American political processes will be expanded through short-term fellowships in state legislatures and city halls across the United States, as well as on Capitol Hill.
In addition, the LFP enables Americans to travel outbound on reciprocal visits. One of the program objectives is to enable Fellows to share their knowledge with peers in Eurasia through a follow-on program in which they will conduct conferences and outreach activities in collaboration with American counterparts. Another unique new feature to the LFP is that it will serve countries outside Eurasia, meaning that American Councils’ Georgian, Russian and Ukrainian Fellows will have an opportunity to learn from their peers around the world (Asia, Africa, etc).
Foreign and domestic participants will be selected through a competitive online application process.
The Legislative Education and Practice (LEAP) program was sponsored by the United States Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.
Since 2005, LEAP fellows worked in many U.S. states and the District of Columbia. They researched policy issues, attended hearings, helped draft legislation, served constituent needs, and performed many other duties.
In order to be eligible for inclusion in the LEAP program, successful applicants were Georgian, Russian, Turkish, or Ukrainian citizens between the ages of 23 and 33; alumni of a long-term exchange program in the U.S. at the secondary, undergraduate or post-graduate level (public or privately funded); had expressed interest and experience in legislative affairs and/or reform; and held at least a bachelor’s degree (or the local equivalent) in political science, international affairs, or another related field of study.