Maintain the Legislative Database and manage Fellows and Analysts
The Director of Legislative Affairs maintains a cohesive workflow among all Fellows, Analysts and Database Editors to achieve continuous development of the most well-informed legislative database possible. The incumbent must be able to delegate and follow-up on tasks given to colleagues and be prepared to deal with issues that may be unresolved. This is a supervisory position so experience in leadership is a plus.
Assigning legislation to Fellows, Analysts, and Editors and inputting their products into the database
Following up on staff about assigned tasks
Deciding which legislation to refer to the Research branch
A strong understanding of the legislative process
Strong attention to detail and work ethic
Ability to keep track of multiple pieces of legislation and their movements through the legislative process and, in turn, database items
Legislative Fellows produce evidence-based analysis of proposed campus policy, formulate original policy suggestions that are submitted to the Senate, and serve as in-house consultants of the Senate environment.
The incumbent must have a demonstrated expertise in Student Government, shown by an appropriate accumulation of any of the following experience, including but not limited to: Tenure as a Senator, Cabinet member, or executive member of an agency or bureau. The Fellowship is designed to develop research skills related to public policy, and immerse the incumbent in project management experience through authoring original reports in the form of Policy Memos to be presented orally to Senate Committees. The incumbent also assists staff on a wide variety of Senate issues that affect the student body. This is not an entry-level position.
Composing in-depth policy evaluations and impact assessments,
Attending Committee meetings and orally delivering policy memos to Senators,
Working with internal leadership to identify and inform campus issues.
Strong writing and critical thinking skills
Commitment to evidence-based policy analysis
Knowledgeable of current campus issues and student government procedure
Legislative Analysts maintain the Legislation Tracker and supply it with fact-based analysis on proposed legislation. The Analyst gathers, evaluates, and analyzes information relevant to proposed legislation, and composes Policy Briefs to explain and contextualize legislation to the student body. Upon direction, the incumbent is responsible for observing and evaluating debate on legislation, either through attending Committee meetings or reading recorded meeting minutes.
Tracking bills and resolutions through the legislative process and recording their progress in the Senate Database,
Preparing briefing summaries of legislation,
When needed, attending Committee and Senate meetings related to specific legislation,
Facilitating communication with Senators regarding their voting records and sponsored legislation, especially that of nuanced debate and/or minority support,
Assisting Legislative Fellows in developing Policy Memos.
Familiarity with SGA legislative systems
Effective written and oral communication skills
Ability to perform multiple tasks accurately and efficiently under time constraints
Maintain the Legislation Database with bill progress and voting records
Legislative Database Editors maintain the administrative records that comprise the Senate Legislation Tracker. This position gives the incumbent firsthand experience with the legislative process of the Student Senate, and experience maintaining an accurate database of legislative records. On a weekly basis, Editors scrape information from Senate voting logs and committee minutes and update the status of legislation.
Creating data entries for new legislation and Senators
Recording voting records of Senators in committees and on the Senate floor
Following the process of legislation through committees and general floor votes
Accessing and archiving digital records of legislation and minutes
Accuracy and attention to detail in data entry
Willingness to become familiar with basic Senate procedure
Weekly (and at the direction of leadership) checking the SGA senate website to find & enter new legislation, and update progress on current ones in committee minutes
When voting records are posted to the senate website, recording those votes in the database
Objectively evaluate SGA's effectiveness of policies
Policy Analysts are responsible for gathering information about proposed, ongoing, and completed campus policies and composing fact-based analyses on those policies. The incumbent will communicate with Executive Branch officials to gather up-to-date information. They will work as part of a team to reach the highest standard possible of evidence-based policy analysis. Critical thinking and decision making skills are necessary in the subjective aspects of the position, namely, authoring constructive criticism of policy execution.
Providing accurate, timely analysis of proposed and completed campus policy
Communicating with Executive Branch officials regarding specific policies
Monitor and analyze evolving campus issues
Furnishing the Initiative Tracker Database in these specific ways:
Metrics - Assigning objective metrics to which policy execution will be evaluated
Grade - Assigning a letter grade to the execution of a policy
Grade Explanation - Justifying why a specific grade was given for an initiative
Recommended Improvements - Steps that the administration should take to achieve an “A” grade, or other further recommended improvements
Strong writing and critical thinking abilities
Commitment to fact-based evaluation, even in areas of subjective judgement
Investigate claims and produce fact-based background on issues
Fact-checkers are persistent, resourceful individuals who aren’t afraid to ask tough questions to Student Government officials. They initiate contact with elected and appointed officials and follow-up on those contacts in search of the truth. They value integrity of data and uphold the Center’s mission in seeking out strong evidence to base analysis on. The ideal candidate keeps careful notes of conversations with government members and reports to Program Analysts or other researchers who are depending on the fact-checker’s information.
Working collaboratively with Program Analysts to ensure all published materials are accurate and up to date
Frequent communication with Student Government officers, both written and face-to-face
Conducting background research for reports being written by Analysts and Fellows
Strong fact-finding and research skills
Ability to act in a professional and polite manner while seeking information that may be difficult to obtain
Run the research operations and manage Fellows and Assistants
The Director of Research oversees and research operations of Torchlight. This is a supervisory position and experience in research is highly recommended. The incumbent should have a demonstrated expertise in research, shown by any of any of the following experiences, including but not limited to: UROP, IDEA grant, DIS, or other similar engagements. The incumbent will manage Fellows and Research Assistants to achieve a high standard of research output within the mission of the Center.
Recruiting and managing Fellows and Assitants, and matching them to appropriate projects.
Interacting with campus interest groups to acquire research projects to delegate to Fellows and Assistants
Ability to manage and follow up on multiple delegated tasks
Research Fellows are the primary producers of research at Torchlight. They are responsible for one project at a time, overseen from start to finish. Projects may be requested by interest groups, or proactively initatied at the request of the Director of Research. Projects must contain a quantitative portion, so experience in writing for policy is recommended. Projects can be as complex or simple as the Fellow decides, ranging from simple data gathering and interpretation to advanced statistical methods.
An example of a research project is the Policy Brief authored for the FSU chapter of the NAACP on trends in enrollment by racial group.
Authoring an original research project pertinent to a current campus issue
Communicating with student interest groups about their requested research
A strong writing ability, evidenced by a writing sample
Ability to abide by deadlines set by the Director of Research or interest groups
Research Assistants are assigned to Research Fellows and assist them in their work. They may be asked to find data online in databases, journals, and other sources, and download and process that data. They communicate with interest groups about their research requests and asist Fellows in presenting research to them.
Assist Research Fellows in their work
Searching for data online
Performing data cleaning and entry
Ability to complete work as part of a team, adhering to deadlines set by the Fellow and Director of Research
The Apprentice Webmaster will shadow the current Director in order to assume responsibility over the website as Webmaster. The website is built using the Wix platform and familiarity with website building is recommended. Knowledge of HTML or other coding language is not necessary, but a willingness to learn about website design and workflow is.
Creating and modifying web pages and structure with an eye for design and ease of end-user usability
Communicating with Directors to make necessary changes to the way their projects are displayed
Train members in using the back-end database
Willingness to become an expert on website database functions
Ability to respond in a timely manner to requests by staff in changing database aspects
As a sitting Senator, provide first-hand accounts of legislative actions
Open to sitting Senators only
Resident Senators are public servants currently carrying out a term as a Senator, who also wish to support the Torchlight Center in a declared and impartial capacity. Resident Senators advise Legislative Fellows and Legislative Analysts of nuance and context that may only be understood from the point of view of a sitting Senator.
Submitting advisory opinions to Legislative Fellows and Analysts to be inputted into the database
Communicating to Legislative staff about the details of specific legislation as they pass through the legislative process
Commitment to abide by our Conflict-of-Interest policy and upholding that commitment by providing disclosure of personal or partisan involvement in legislative procedures
Apply I/O psychology practices to a working environment
PSY4930 or substitute required
The Industrial/Organizational Psychology spcialist applies concepts from IO Psychlogy theory to the inner workings of the Center. The incumbent will review workflows and interactions between team members to identify areas of disfunction and improvement.
Identifyng and writing KSAOs for position descriptions
Interviewing team members to achieve an understanding of workflow processes
Completion or enrollment in an I/O Psychology course is required, and career aspirations in I/O Psychology are a plus
Willingness to become familiar with basic SGA procedures, to better understand internal workflows