Purposes and Goals of the JPSM Junior
Fellow Internship Program
As the United States moves closer
and closer to a full information society, there are enormous
career opportunities for those who have the knowledge and skills
to design, collect, and analyze large scale data bases. All
that the country knows about its population growth and
migration, its health, criminal victimization, traffic patterns,
educational performance, labor and job markets, prices of daily
goods, agricultural production, air and water quality, and
income distributions is based on sample surveys and censuses, as
well as administrative data systems.
Staff who create and control
these information systems literally determine what the country
knows about itself. Their work leads to information that moves
billions of dollars in the stock market, shapes public opinion
about what challenges are faced by the country, and determines
what issues state and Federal governments tackle. In addition,
the staff of Federal statistical agencies have the assurance
that their work is of public service. Their efforts help serve
the country and the people of the United States, supplying the
information that an informed electorate uses to shape its
The knowledge they need is not
found in a single academic discipline, but rather a mix of
substantive fields, including statistics, sociology, economics,
epidemiology, and psychology. The work involves the use of
statistics, to guide the design of data collection efforts and
ways to summarize the information obtained; psychology, to
construct survey questions so that they are comprehended as
intended for the information system; and computer science, to
aid in the collection, processing, and analysis of data.
Because the field is a mix of
various traditional disciplines undergraduates rarely learn
about this career path. The JPSM junior fellow program is a
chance to learn about the career opportunity at a time when you
can still shape your undergraduate curriculum.
A Highly Competitive Program
for a Select Few
The JPSM junior fellow program is
a cooperative venture of the Interagency Council on Statistical
Policy and the
Joint Program in Survey Methodology. The Joint Program in
Survey Methodology is funded primarily by the Interagency
Council on Statistical Policy to provide graduate educational
programs for the next generation of technical staff in the
Federal Statistical System. Its graduate faculty devote their
teaching careers to teaching the multidisciplinary tools that
are needed for large scale surveys and censuses.
This is a unique internship
experience that gives you a paid research assistantship, plus
educational benefits that can expand your horizons of what you
can do in your career.
The Work Experience
During the day you will work as
an intern in one of the Federal statistical agencies below:
You'll work with staff whose job it is to report to the nation
about its health and welfare. You'll watch how they do it and
you'll learn about what's needed to devise modern complex
The Educational Experience
The JPSM will mount a junior
fellow seminar during the summer months. It will provide you an
introduction to how large scale surveys are designed, collected,
and analyzed. You'll have contact with graduate faculty who
direct the programs of the Joint Program as well as be enrolled
in mini-courses about key components of complex surveys. In
addition, you'll have contact with key technical leaders of the
Federal statistical system, to provide you a sense of what work
goes on in various agencies of the system. Finally, you'll
participate in discussions about which undergraduate courses
offer strong preparation for a career in the field and for
Do you have the "Right Stuff"?
The JPSM junior fellow internship
is not for everyone. As you think about applying, answer the
- Do you like to learn things
about current trends in what people are thinking, what
problems they face, how employers grow over time, how retail
sales vary over time, and a host of other topics?
- Are you good in math? Do
you like to play with numbers as a way of learning about the
- Do you have a strong
academic record so far in college?
- Would you like to learn more
about a career in survey methodology and large social and
economic information systems?
If you've answered "yes" to these
questions, then the internship may be for you!
1. Have assembled sufficient
college credits to have completed your sophomore or junior
year as of June (or the end of the last term of the academic year). Students completing
their undergraduate degree on or before June are
ineligible for this internship program.
2. Have achieved a GPA of at
least 3.5 on a 4 point system.
3. Submit an academic transcript to:
JPSM Junior Fellow Program
1218 Lefrak Hall
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742
Please indicate you are applying for the JPSM Junior Fellow Program when
mailing in transcripts.
4. Complete a 500 word essay
on why you want to be a JPSM junior fellow.
5. Provide grades on
mathematics, statistics, or other quantitative courses in your
6. Obtain a letter of recommendation
from one faculty member. Send all recommendations to
Please include "JPSM Junior Fellow Program" in the subject line.
7. Be a U.S. citizen
A national selection board,
consisting of JPSM faculty, undergraduate faculty from colleges
and universities across the country, and staff from Federal
statistical agencies will review applications and make
selections of the junior fellows.
Although specific program dates are not yet set, the program usually runs for 10 weeks starting at the end of May / beginning of June and goes through the first week of August. Specific dates will be posted in the spring.
A salary of at least $26,000 (full-time annual equivalent) will be paid.
Double rooms in dormitories at the George Washington
University will be provided at no cost to the Junior Fellows. Members of the JPSM Fellows group
will be housed together in suites with kitchens.
will be at one of several Federal agencies. Students can bring
cars, or rely on the
Washington D.C. metro system.