Veterans Program for Politics and Civic Engagement

Training program for veterans and military-connected considering careers in politics

Training Program for Veterans and Military-Connected Individuals


The VPPCE prepares veterans and military-connected individuals with the skills, knowledge, and tools to launch a successful and meaningful career in politics. Veterans with first-hand experience running for office, experts in the field, and esteemed faculty from the Maxwell School — the nation’s #1-ranked graduate school in public affairs, deliver instruction throughout our programs.

The program engages participants in different stages of their political journey in campaign topics such as fundraising, public communications, social media, identifying mentors, building your platform, and leveraging resources available to veterans, among others.

Together, we provide participants the opportunity for self-assessment and reflection. What from your military experience can you bring to your candidacy and public office? What are your areas for growth? What political office should you run for?


Due to the evolving situation with the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), and to best protect members of our community and our guests, we are preparing to provide an online learning environment for VPPCE Fall 2020. Please check back frequently for updated information. 


Fall 2020 Program Opportunities


Annual Program | October – November 2020

Better known as PHASE II, this program offers three-weeks of online, asynchronous learning through Syracuse University’s Blackboard platform and one-week of on-campus training that takes place during Veteran’s Day Week. The focus of the training is to help participants determine which district or level of office they should seek to run, their political goals, understanding the essential components of a campaign, and building a usable campaign plan. IVMF staff and Maxwell School faculty facilitate course instruction, including topics such as campaign management, political leadership, getting on the ballot, campaign finance, among other topics. Participants are expected to complete online assignments and complete group work during the online and on-campus portion of the program.

Learn more below in the section labeled PHASE II.

Program Phases


Phase I: Ideation

Group of VPPCE attendees together for a group photo.Should you consider a career in politics? Suited for veterans and family members interested in politics that are unsure where to start, the ideation phase provides participants with shortened online engagement and training opportunities to identify and define political aspirations and start planning for a successful bid for public office. Goals of the phase include understanding resources available to veterans, what it takes to run for office, and refining the participant’s political interests through meaningful dialogue facilitated by Maxwell faculty and written coursework. This program operates once a quarter on a rolling basis, based on interest.

Eligibility

All veterans and members of their family may apply. Candidates must be an active member in their community, with a specific interest in running for office or organizing around issues pertaining to politics or civic engagement.

Cost

There is no cost to participants.



Phase II: Planning (Signature Program)

Speaker teaching class to veterans during the 2019 VPPCE..This is an annual program that offers three-weeks of online, asynchronous learning through Syracuse University’s Blackboard and one-week of on-campus training that takes place during Veteran’s Day Week. All learning is facilitated by IVMF staff and Maxwell School faculty. Course topics include basic campaign management, political communications, engaging social and traditional media, political leadership, and getting on the ballot, among other campaign topics. Participants are expected to complete online assignments and complete group work during the online and on-campus portion of the program. Segmented short courses will be available throughout the year on a rolling basis.

Fall 2020 Program Details

  • Training Dates
    • Online immersion: October 12, 2020 – October 30, 2020
    • On-campus immersion: November 7, 2020 – November 13, 2020

What You Will Experience

  • Online learning and virtual engagement with faculty
  • A seven-day intensive Syracuse University campus experience
  • Continued support and networking opportunities as program alumni

The main deliverable for this program is a tailored campaign plan for each program participant.

Eligibility

All veterans and members of their family may apply. Candidates must be committed to civic engagement, running for office, or improving their skills/knowledge while holding public office. We are looking for roughly 25 participants to fill the class.

Cost

Programming, lodging, and meals provided to students are free, however participants are responsible for travel expenses.



Phase III: Active Candidate Training

VPPCE participant speaking during class.A training designed for active political candidates, our team provides learning and networking opportunities in tandem with the specific campaign needs of participants. From creating your voter universe and effectively communicating with your voter block to learning how to manage your campaign committee, IVMF staff, Maxwell faculty, and experts in the field are there to help you streamline the learning curve of the campaign process. Separate federal, state, and local government focused trainings will be offered based on interest.

Eligibility

Open to the public and veterans and members of their family. Candidates must have an active campaign committee filed with their local elections committee and or Federal Elections Commission, campaign manager, and campaign plan.

Cost

To be determined based on size of the class. Discounted pricing for veterans.



Phase IV: Elected Official

VPPCE participants with Mike Haynie and David Van Slyke.Pinnacle of VPPCE, this phase offers in-person professional leadership training for elected veteran or military-connected individuals. Learning objectives consist of effective transition into office, assembling a team, relationship building, and public sector leadership and management. Trainings will take place prior to the inauguration in January.

Eligibility

Open to the public and veterans and members of their family. The program candidate must be an elected official within the United States on the local, state, or federal level.

Cost
No cost for veterans.


Frequently Asked Questions


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