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Advance Team Application

Advance Team 2019-20

Applications are due by 5 pm Tuesday, March 12, 2019

The Riley Institute of Government, Politics, and Public Leadership is a non-partisan, multi-faceted institute affiliated with the Department of Politics and International Affairs at Furman University. It is unique in the United States in the emphasis it places on students and on engaged learning. Through its national conferences, symposia, lectures, fellows-in–residence, and outreach programs, the Riley Institute works to enhance an understanding of public policy issues, to promote civic responsibility and participation, and to develop leadership among Furman students and the greater community.

Riley Institute Advance Team members work with the Riley Institute staff to carry out a variety of Institute programs and, in the process, have special access to and interaction with local, national, and international leaders. Over the past several years the Riley Institute has hosted prime ministers, senators, cabinet members, governors, members of congress, ambassadors, diplomats, mayors, members of parliaments from countries in Europe, Africa, Asia, and Latin America, and a large number of community activists and leaders. Advance Team members help host guests of the Institute and assist the Riley Institute staff with the implementation of events.

Applicants should be aware that membership in the Advance Team requires a substantial commitment of time and energy during the academic year. Membership in the Riley Institute Advance Team is open to students from all majors and the application process is competitive.

Mandatory requirements are listed below.  Please be sure that you can meet all of them before committing to the application process. Feel free to contact Jack Ligon or Jill Fuson if you have questions about these requirements.

  • Attend an introductory meeting on Tuesday, April 23 at 5 pm (if you are on study away, you are excused from this)
  • Attend all Advance Team meetings; these are held twice a month on Tuesdays or Wednesdays in the late afternoon. Only one excused absence per term will be permitted.
  • Attend trip to Columbia in January for the Wilkins Legislative and Civic Awards Dinner.
  • Attend all Riley Institute functions for Furman students.
  • Participate in the team’s effort to conceptualize and implement a CLP event.
  • Participate in a current events presentation over the 2019-2020 academic year.

Riley Institute Advance Team Application

Part I (all applicants)

What activities will you be involved in at Furman during the 2019-2020 academic year? (This includes fraternities or sororities, sports teams, mock trial, religious organizations, Student Conduct Board, jobs and/or internships, etc.) 

Please specify how often these other activities will conflict with Advance Team meetings and other Riley events.

Part II (all applicants)

Please email a resume to that includes:

  • Your leadership and/or civic activities at Furman (and/or high school if you are a freshman)
  • Any study away or service learning programs and/or collaborative research programs while at Furman
  • Any internship and/or work experience
  • Your GPA

Part III (New applicants only)

Please answer the following two questions in short essay format

Question 1: Briefly describe a public policy issue of interest to you. Include in your essay the differing perspectives of this issue. Why has this issue had a particular impact on you?

Question 2: Tell us why you would like to be a member of the Riley Institute Advance Team, and what you could bring to the group dynamic.

Part IV (New applicants only)

Applicants must provide the name of a Furman professor who will act as a reference. Please list the reference’s name below, along with the pertinent contact information. This reference may be contacted to speak on your behalf.

Part V (returning Advance Team members only)

Please answer these questions:

  1. What suggestions can you offer for the Advance Team experience next year?

  2. Please describe one experience on the Advance Team that has had an impact on you during your time at Furman. 

Applications are due by 5 pm, Tuesday, March 12, 2019

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Please remember to email your resume to

Interviews MAY be conducted and a decision will be announced by April 15th, 2019.