The Betty Jane Narver Policy Fellowship
The Betty Jane Narver Fellowship position has been filled for 2018-2019
The Betty Jane Narver Fellowship was created in honor of one of the most admired and productive figures in recent civic life, Betty Jane Narver. She served as director of the University of Washington Institute for Public Policy and Management, and led research on various education reform programs, welfare systems, and fiscal policy. Betty Jane was known for her skills bringing people together and for mentoring young civic leaders. The Budget & Policy Center hopes to honor her legacy with this fellowship designed to increase the diversity of voices in state policy debates.
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The Betty Jane Narver Fellowship is a six-month, graduate level policy position within the Budget & Policy Center. Narver fellows conduct research and analysis and help advance policy proposals. They also get the opportunity to gain first-hand, behind-the-scenes insight into the role that research and advocacy play in creating policy change at the state level.
The fellowship aims to provide an engaging and interactive learning experience that will develop and bolster the individual’s skill set, network, and candidacy among prospective careers in policy, advocacy, and leadership. This hands-on fellowship will develop awareness and increase engagement in the following areas: (1) research, (2) communications, (3) outreach and advocacy, and (4) networking and professional relationship-building.
The Budget & Policy Center’s core work is focused on ensuring Washington state is making progress in six key areas, as laid out in our Progress Index: economic security; education; healthy people and environment; community development and trust; good jobs; and revenue. To ensure this progress for our state, we pursue common-sense policies related to the state budget, revenue system, and economy. Focusing on how policies promote and advance equity is at the forefront of our work. Over the course of the fellowship, the fellow will engage in research and analysis on a topic of interest to them alongside our policy staff.
• Learning about key indicators of economic and social well-being
• Researching the major sources of revenue in Washington state and why revenue reform is necessary for prosperity
• Understanding how policies and strategies support workers and a strong middle class, like the Earned Income Tax Credit, minimum wage policies, and protection for worker rights
Recognizing that the Budget & Policy Center’s research can only go so far without the proper framing and messaging, the fellow will also work with our communications staff as well as staff at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) to learn more about the various methods we use to talk about the role of government and the role of media in our work.
• Improving writing and communication skills that incorporate the proper framing and messaging around our core issues
• Gaining familiarity with the messaging around the role of government, taxes, budgets, racial equity, and economic security
• Developing an understanding of the media landscape in Washington state
Outreach & Advocacy
Outreach and advocacy is an increasingly important component of the Budget & Policy Center’s work. Throughout the fellowship, the fellow will learn more about our work with key partners and legislators and get an inside look at the legislative process in Washington state. This includes the opportunity to shadow a state legislator and spend a few days with a partner advocacy organization.
• Developing an understanding of the legislative process
• Gaining familiarity with the advocacy landscape and the work of our partner organizations
• Providing support for the Budget & Policy Center’s annual policy conference, attended by over 300 policymakers, advocates, and community leaders
Networking & Professional Relationship-Building
The Narver Fellowship also presents a wonderful opportunity to network and connect with other people in the field, including previous fellows. There will be numerous opportunities to engage throughout the fellowship experience.
• Establishing connections with key leaders and advocates, to increase future career opportunities
• Connecting with a growing and diverse community of talented individuals
The fellowship is open to any currently enrolled graduate student in a college or university, and recent graduates with a master's degree or Ph.D.
Narver Fellows possess:
• A commitment to social justice
• Facility with quantitative analysis
• An understanding or a desire to understand policymaking
• A desire to receive mentorship
• A strong interest in pursuing a career involving policy analysis
Qualified applicants should have excellent written and oral communications skills, a commitment to accuracy and attention to detail, and a demonstrated interest in fiscal policy.
Learn more about the previous Betty Jane Narver Fellows below.
Karinda was the inaugural Betty Jane Narver Fellow. After her fellowship, she has worked as a policy intern for Seattle Public Utilities as well as in roles at the Women’s Funding Alliance, the Community Police Commission in the Seattle Office of the Mayor, and External Relations with the Office of the Mayor. Karinda has a passion for social justice and connecting communities of color to power and resources, and views working in government as a perfect alignment for those passions. She has a Bachelor of Business Administration from Howard University, and a Master of Public Administration from Seattle University. She is also a graduate of the Institute for a Democratic Future and active in her community through participation and leadership in various organizations.
"I always credit the Budget & Policy Center with giving me a foundational understanding of policy, outreach, and coalition building. I know that every opportunity I’ve had since my fellowship is because of my time at B&PC. One of my favorite experiences involves working at the Children’s Alliance, witnessing the power of advocacy, and seeing the connection and importance of B&PC’s research and proposals at the grassroots and community levels."
Following her fellowship, Elena interned with the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington, D.C. She then returned to the Budget & Policy Center as a research assistant and later a policy analyst who focused on economic security and poverty prevention. She now works as a research analyst at Casey Family Programs in Seattle. Elena hails from southern New Mexico and has a passion for economic and racial justice. She has a B.A. in Law, Societies, & Justice from the University of Washington and a Master of Public Administration from the UW Evans School of Public Policy and Governance. Prior to joining B&PC, she worked with a diversity outreach program at the University of Washington called the UW GenOM Project.
"This fellowship was really a life-changing experience for me in that it helped me find my niche. I always wanted a job that was different every day, challenged me, and at the same time incorporated my interests in research, social justice, economic justice, and racial equity. Fiscal policy work combines all those interests so I don’t have to choose just one!"
Jillian is a proponent of equal opportunity in higher education for all, a viewpoint rooted in not only the barriers and obstacles faced by low-income students and students of color, but also her own experiences. She has a Master's in Education Policy (MEP) from the University of Washington, and has served as co-chair of the MEP Advisory Board. She is a graduate of Project Lead as well as a board member for Seattle Education Access and University Beyond Bars. Following her time with us, she has worked as the legislative assistant to Rep. Drew Hansen (House Higher Education Chair), and she is currently the research and evaluation officer for the College Success Foundation.
"The best thing to come out of my experience as a Narver Fellow was having an ongoing sense of family and support. When I started the fellowship, I had just recently moved from Tennessee so I was very new to Seattle, let alone Washington state policies and politics. As a fellow, it was an honor to receive guidance from this dedicated and talented staff, yet I still continued to receive encouragement and support even after my experience ended. It’s a great feeling to know that the staff wants to see you succeed and wants to stay connected. I recognize that this much reinforcement from an organization is rare, so it is invaluable to me."
Eritrea has a passion for social and economic justice and is interested in broad issues ranging from international development and immigration to anti-poverty programs. Eritrea grew up in the northwest and received dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Political Science and Anthropology from the University of Washington. Prior to joining B&PC she interned at the City of Seattle Auditor's Office and Centerstone, a community action agency in Seattle’s Central District. Following her fellowship, she graduated with a Master of Arts in Policy Studies from the University of Washington-Bothell and moved into a role in the social impact evaluation field.
"My experience at the Budget & Policy Center was an invaluable look into research-based advocacy. The fellowship not only helped me build critical analysis skills, but provided me with an opportunity to learn and experience a range of policy perspectives and advocacy strategies. I will forever be grateful for the motivation and self-assurance it provided me as I continue on my career path, and the tremendous support from the staff."
"This is a great opportunity for someone interested in a career in public policy to learn from the inside. When I was in school, I would have loved to have had the experience in being mentored by the leading progressive think tank in our state. I’m confident that this fellowship will result in more diversity in our public policy discussions.”
The Budget & Policy Center is committed to fostering diversity within our organization and our communities. To us, diversity means differing life experiences and backgrounds, and may include gender, race, ethnicity, culture, religion, sexual orientation, disability, marital status, and age.