Apply as a Host

Illini Scholars are valuable, productive members of your team.

2 young adults with adult mentor

The Illini Science Policy Program will match highly motivated and qualified University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign graduates who have advanced degrees with Illinois public agencies or legislative offices for a 12-month, full-time paid appointment.

Fill out a host application.

You benefit by hosting a scholar.

Hosts provide an educational opportunity to Illini Science Policy Scholars, who will, in turn, provide substantial professional contributions to the office, drawing from the latest scientific and disciplinary advances at U of I’s flagship campus.

What agencies are eligible to host?

This RFA is open for participation by local, state and federal agencies and legislative offices located in Illinois with mandates in research, policy, or management issues related to food, economy, environment, community, and health.


  • February 1: Final day to submit host applications.
  • February 6: Scholar applications open. (Rolling submissions)
  • March 24: Final day for potential scholars to submit applications.
  • Feb 6 to March 27: Applications reviewed for eligibility.
  • March 27 to April 13: Hosts review applications and interview candidates
  • April 17: Final day for hosts to send priority list of matches to Extension.
  • April 18 to April 20: Matching process happens. 
  • End April / early May: Host and scholar matches announced.
  • June 1: Scholars may begin term with host office.
  • Summer: Orientation
  • August 31: Final day for scholars to begin term with host office.


50/50 match between host agency and Illinois Extension. One scholar is placed per site unless a host site selects two scholars. The second scholar is funded by the host site at 100% .


Previous Illini Science Policy Program Hosts

Legislative Host Placement

  • Illinois Legislative Black Caucus and the Illinois Legislative Black Caucus Foundation
  • Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus and the Illinois Legislative Latino Caucus Foundation
  • Illinois Office of the Lieutenant Governor, Juliana Stratton
  • Congressional appointment – potential position (pending)

State Agency Host Placement

  • Illinois Department of Agriculture, Division of Natural Resources
  • Illinois Department of Agriculture, Meat, and Poultry Division
  • Illinois Board of Higher Education
  • Illinois Department of Innovation and Technology, Education Group
  • Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Office of Broadband

Application Information


The deadline for ISPP Host applications is February 1, 2023.