The Institute of a Democratic Future (IDF) is now accepting applications for the Class of 2017. Our early application period begins on October 7th and continues through Sunday, November 13th. The early application fee is $25. If you need a few extra days to pull your application materials together, we have an extended “late application period” that continues until Sunday, November 20th; however, the application fee increases to $40.
IDF is a six-month fellowship from January through June, occurring over twelve intensive weekends (see the weekend dates and summaries here). During these weekends the program focuses on a diverse range of political topics. The program covers the nuts and bolts of campaigns and elections, geographic issues from around the state, and developing leadership skills with our fellows. The program offers a rich curriculum, networking opportunities, and will leave fellows with lasting ties to their current class and other alumni. Fellows meet with elected officials, leading experts, business owners, lobbyists, nonprofit leaders, and people making a difference in communities all over the state and in Washington DC. We want our fellows to get engaged in the political process while introducing them to the people and issues that are affecting our state. Each year IDF graduates a “farm team” of progressive leaders who go out into the world and make a difference within campaigns, policy jobs, nonprofits and work in their communities.
Prospective applicants must submit an online application form, resume, cover letter, and at least one letter of recommendation. Applicants must be between the ages of 21 and 36 as of the start of the program, Friday, January 6, 2017. Final selection will also be based on an interview, to be conducted on December 3 or 4, 2016, in Seattle.
Tuition for our Class of 2017 in $615. Scholarships and payment plans are available. The cost to IDF for providing the program was approximately $1,300 per fellow, so please know that your tuition covers only a portion and generous donors to IDF support you with the rest.
The schedule of weekends for our 2017 program is available here. Please review the weekend dates. Fellows are allowed to miss up to two weekends, but asked not to miss the kickoff weekend or two consecutive weekends.
Deadlines and Other Dates
- Applications will be accepted starting October 7, 2016. There is a $25 non-refundable application fee.
- Applications must be postmarked by November 13, 2016 (Late applications will be considered until November 20, 2016, with an increased $40 nonrefundable application fee).
- We will be hosting an IDF Recruitment Event, called the Annual Stoplight Party on October 13th. It’s an opportunity for you to come meet alumni, the Board and ask questions about the program. For more information, please check the event page.
- Interviews will be scheduled individually shortly after the final application deadline. This year’s interviews will be Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4 in Seattle.
- Weekend calendar (click here for more details):
- January 6-8 (Friday evening – Sunday) – Kickoff
- January 16-17 (Monday – Tuesday) Olympia
- January 28-29 (Saturday – Sunday) Puget Sound Weekend
- February 10-12 (Friday night – Sunday) Kitsap County / Olympic Peninsula
- February 25-26 (Saturday – Sunday) Puget Sound Weekend Two
- March 10-12 (Friday – Sunday) Northwest WA Weekend
- March 25-26 (Saturday – Sunday) Puget Sound Weekend Three
- April 7-9 (Friday night – Sunday) Southwest WA
- April 21-23 (Friday night – Sunday) Central WA
- May 9-13 (Tuesday night – Sunday) Washington DC
- June 2-4 (Friday night – Sunday) Eastern WA
- June 17 (Saturday) Puget Sound Day Four & Graduation