The field of government and policy encompasses a wide range of interdisciplinary public service careers in diplomacy, advocacy, and federal, state, and local government. Some of these roles focus on revising and improving regulations and others on influencing the development of legislative policy areas. Others center on pursuing fundamental rights and social justice for communities through direct government action—as legislators creating policy or administrators implementing policy.
Colby alumni have worked in diverse settings: the U.S. House of Representatives, USAID, the World Bank, New York City Economic Development Corporation, Department of Justice, National Institutes of Health, Maine Department of the Secretary of the State, Human Rights Watch, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies. They have joined think tanks, policy groups, legislative bodies, nonprofits, foundations, and government agencies.
Recruiting timelines for government and policy roles vary; learn more about recruiting timelines on our job search page.
Legislative aides support legislators by drafting legislative initiatives, tracking issues and their development in committee or on the floor, coordinating support and sponsorship, liaising with committee and agency staff, meeting with constituents or agency representatives, and assisting with communications (e.g. speech writing, press releases, and mass mailings).
Campaign field organizers typically work for political parties in support of a chosen candidate’s campaign, for which they recruit, train, and manage volunteers for phone banking, voter registration, and canvassing events. Responsible for meeting weekly volunteer recruitment and voter contact goals, field organizers identify, persuade, and mobilize voters in a specific geographical area under the supervision of a field director.
Often working for government agencies or organizations that lobby the government, policy analysts analyze existing or imminent policy problems, gather qualitative and quantitative data to explore the problem, and assess changes that could resolve these concerns. They write reports synthesizing evidence and knowledge from diverse viewpoints and stakeholders in order to raise awareness of the impacts and benefits of proposed solutions.
Program officers oversee the development of programs for nonprofit organizations or foundations and ensure that the management and leadership of the program aligns with key goals and initiatives. Their scope of oversight often includes project management, development, work planning, communications, budgets and contracts, grant proposals and prospecting, and research activities.