The Rappaport Fellows Program in Law and Public Policy is built around a series of experiences and activities that blend the practical and the intellectual elements of public service law and civic leadership. For the selected Rappaport Fellows, the ten-week program has three major components:
- Working in summer legal internships with state or local government offices emphasizing in public policy and issues relevant to the Greater Boston region;
- Engaging in a weekly seminar series and other activities designed to immerse the fellows in issues of law, public policy, and public service relevant to Greater Boston; and
- Participating in an individually matched mentoring program with a seasoned lawyer, government official, and/or civic leader.
Each Rappaport Fellow will complete a paid ten-week summer internship with a Boston-area state or local government employer that focuses on policy issues. The Rappaport Center assists the fellows in securing eligible internships.
Internship placements from the 2013 fellowship included:
- Boston Redevopment Authority
- City of Boston Public Health Commission
- Governor's Office of Legal Counsel
- MA Attorney General's Office
- MA Department of Elementary and Secondary Education
- MA Executive Office for Administration and Finance
- MA Department of Public Utilities
- MA Governor's Office of Cabinet Affairs
- MA Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation
Each Rappaport Fellow is matched with a mentor selected on the basis of the student’s professional interests or other areas of commonality. The mentors are well known members of the legal community in Boston, and can serve as lifelong advisers and advocates for fellows.
Educational Programs and Lectures
The Rappaport Fellows meet weekly during June and July for discussions on topics related to public service, civic leadership, and law and policy in the Greater Boston region. Senior attorneys, government officials, and community leaders often join to share their experiences, insights, and advice.
The Rappaport Fellows become part of an interdisciplinary community through a partnership with the Harvard Kennedy School’s Rappaport Institute for Greater Boston, which runs a similar fellowship program for graduate students interested in public policy. During the summer, the two groups of fellows participate in several joint seminar sessions and field trips.
Previous educational seminars have included state court judges, press secretaries and reporters, agency general counsels, budgetary and legislative experts, and current and former elected officials. The program also offers occasional social gatherings and educational programs to which all former Rappaport Fellows are invited.
Fellows are required to commit to participating in all aspects of the Rappaport Fellows Program as a condition of the fellowship.