The Lobby Associate position changes as the political climate changes, but what does not change is that lobby associates take on a few issues and learn about them in depth. Upon your arrival at NETWORK you will be assigned to a few issues. Your work around these issues will include: researching the issue, developing one page documents for the website/for Congressional staffers, attending coalition meetings with other similar organizations, working on sign-on letters, figuring out how to inform and mobilize the grassroots around your issue and attending lobby visits. At some points the work is more general, trying to gather support for an issue, but other times the work is more detailed and specific, attempting to change the language of a bill, lobbying for increased co-sponsors, and then lobbying for the eventual passage of a bill. Either way you will get to know the ins and outs of the issues you’re assigned to and you’ll be keeping up to date with the latest issue information on the Capitol Hill, in the nation and abroad.
While the Lobby Associates delve into an issue or two at a very in-depth level, the Field Associate learns a little bit about everything NETWORK works on, in order to send out educational updates to our members. NETWORK Field staff (Organizer and Associate) send out weekly e-mail legislative updates, occasional other e-mail alerts, and occasional mailed updates. This involves compiling information, writing, formatting and editing to make our work understandable to our members. Field staff also maintain NETWORK’s online legislative action center, respond to questions and suggestions from our members, and try to motivate members and others to take action. The Field Associate also gets experience working with a NETWORK lobbyist on one or two particular issues -- this may include some research, coalition meetings, Congressional hearings and briefings, “think-tank” presentations, and lobby visits. The specific duties of the Field Associate may vary from year to year, depending on the needs of the organization and the particular skills and interests of the Associate.
As Field and Lobby staff work to respond quickly to current legislation, the Education Associate is responsible for understanding and reaching communities with the broader context in which we are working. The Education Program examines the policies NETWORK is trying to influence and then creates and presents workshops designed to help groups understand the larger justice issues at stake in the context of the Catholic faith. The education associate will aid in development and presentation of workshops, track educational engagements and maintain relationships with partnering organizations. As with the other positions, you will have the opportunity to work in coalitions, attend presentations, and participate in some advocacy. You will also be responsible for assisting the Coordinator in implementing NETWORK Education Program’s one week summer course. This includes logistics planning, early outreach and communication with student participants, and course content development with other NETWORK and NEP staff.