Baucus Leaders Program

The Max S. Baucus Institute invites applications from University of Montana students for an opportunity to be part of the first class of Baucus Leaders in the summer of 2018. Baucus Leaders will be placed as interns in the Washington, D.C. offices of Montana’s congressional delegation and with the U.S. Senate Finance Committee.

The Max S. Baucus Institute

The Max S. Baucus Institute (Institute) is a nonpartisan, multidisciplinary public policy institute that pursues excellence in four key areas:

  1. “Tomorrow’s Leaders.” We train and provide internships and other opportunities to students and professionals who want to devote their careers to serving the public good;
  2. “Global Engagement.” We ensure that Montana students have opportunities to engage with the wider world;
  3. “Economic Development.” We support work that benefits the Montana economy and provides opportunities for our citizens to live and work in Montana; and
  4. “Last Best Place.” We actively participate in efforts to strike an appropriate balance between preserving Montana’s natural resources for future generations and supporting responsible utilization of those resources for the economic benefit of Montanans.

Baucus Leaders Program

The Institute recognizes that, much like Ambassador Baucus’s own life experiences, it is the experiences that we can open for young women and men that will inspire them to engage in meaningful work to benefit society. The Institute seeks four exceptional students from the University of Montana to make up our first class of Baucus Leaders.
One Baucus Leader will be placed as an intern in the each of the following Washington D.C.-based legislative offices: Senator Jon Tester, Senator Steve Daines, and Representative Greg Gianforte, and one Baucus Leader will intern with the U.S. Senate Finance Committee. Each internship will start on or around June 4th and end on or around August 3rd. Baucus Leaders will be given a $5,000 stipend to defray the costs of airfare to and from Washington, D.C., housing, and food during the two-month internship. The Baucus Leader will be solely responsible for any expenses incurred during the internship period over and above this amount.


Baucus Leaders will be selected based on academic performance, commitment to public service, and interest in the political process. The program is open to all full-time students at the University of Montana, undergraduate and graduate, who are in good academic standing at the time of applying and who will be enrolled as full-time students at UM during Fall Semester 2018.

How to Apply

Applications are due no later than 5:00 pm on Sunday, January 7, 2018 and should be sent via email to Professor Sam Panarella, Director of the Max S. Baucus Institute, at

A complete application will include the following:

  • A current curriculum vitae with contact information (email and phone number)
  • An academic transcript showing grades through the most recent semester for which final grades are available. Graduate students should also send a transcript for their undergraduate studies.
  • An essay of no more than 300 words about why you want to be a Baucus Leader and how you believe you will contribute to the program and to the office where you will intern.
  • One letter of recommendation from a person who can speak with knowledge about your character and commitment to public service.
  • A ranking of 1 (most desirable) through 4 (least desirable) of the four internship opportunities. The applicant must provide this ranking and may not have any ties.

*Late or incomplete applications will not be considered.

The Institute will select three finalists for each internship. Finalists will be notified by email of their selection by Friday, February 9, 2018. All finalists will be interviewed by representatives of the office where the internship will take place, and may be required to submit additional application materials to that office. Finalists will be notified whether or not they have been selected as a 2018 Baucus Leader by Friday, March 16, 2018.

Further Information

Contact Professor Sam Panarella via email with any questions you have about the program. We look forward to reviewing your application.