Originally published May 2, 2023; Revised May 7, 2023
The Parliamentary Internship Programme (PIP) was jointly established by the House of Commons and the Canadian Political Science Association (CPSA) in 1969 to provide a non-partisan work-study experience for recent graduates.
On April 26, the CPSA informed the House of Commons that it will not continue as the PIP’s administrative partner after its current Service Agreement with the House of Commons ends in December 2024. This decision reflects the CPSA’s desire to restructure its operations given its financial difficulties over the past three years.
The PIP pays an annual management fee to the CPSA as compensation for bookkeeping and other services and also receives other in-kind support from the organization.
A process will begin in the coming weeks to consider new administrative options for the PIP. The Programme is confident that current and future Interns will not experience disruptions to their learning experience during the transition. Sponsors and other stakeholders will receive regular updates as the situation unfolds.
The PIP is well placed to cope with any additional expenses that might result from the end of its relationship with the CPSA. Thanks to its dedicated sponsors, the Programme has operated with budget surpluses in each of the past 10 years even as it has consistently increased the Interns’ stipend and developed additional supports to ensure the Programme is accessible to Canadians from all backgrounds. This stability has enabled the PIP to build a substantial reserve fund for unexpected situations like this transition.
In November 2022, the House of Commons Board of Internal Economy also agreed to support the enhancement and expansion of the Programme, approving $930,000 over the next five years to increase the salary for the 10 existing Intern placements, fully fund two new Intern placements, and provide support for additional administrative costs.
Since its founding, the PIP has provided over 500 young Canadians with the life-changing opportunity to learn about our democracy through the Programme’s unique combination of academic research and placements with Members of Parliament from both the government and opposition. PIP alumni can be found in leading positions throughout Canadian society and internationally, we are excited that the new funding from the House of Commons will allow the Programme to provide even more to support for MPs and Canadian democracy in the coming years.
For further information regarding the Parliamentary Internship Programme please contact the PIP Director, Dr. Paul Thomas, at firstname.lastname@example.org.