Every year the AAS brings volunteers to Washington, DC, to advocate for federal support of their science with their members of Congress for a Congressional Visits Day (CVD).
A few things to keep in mind while you consider volunteering for this opportunity:
- You must be an AAS member.
- You must be eligible to vote in the United States.
- Business attire is required.
- The AAS will cover the majority of travel expenses for volunteers selected to participate, as our budget allows. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CVD may need to pivot to a virtual format. We are moving forward with logistics for an in-person experience, but as of application opening (12/01/21) the Hill remains closed to visitors.
- Submitting the form does not guarantee you a slot in this year's CVD. Selected volunteers will be notified by
Februaryend of March 2022.
AAS CVD 2022 ***UPDATE*** Now planned for May 2-4, 2022
While we cannot guarantee it, we hope to have an in-person visit this year pending re-opening of the Hill for constituent meetings. Below is a tentative timeline:
- Late January 2022: Deadline to apply, candidates notified, and final participants chosen.
- February 2022: Virtual seminars to prepare for visits (e.g. federal budget process 101, how to communicate effectively with policy makers, information on the issues that currently impact astronomy and science in general, etc).
Between March 21 and April 8May 2-4 2022: 2 day in-person CVD (half day optional prep, 1 day of required prep, 1 day of visits)
- Fall 2022: Possible in-person fallback date, depending on the pandemic status.
Volunteer Selection: We aim to select approximately 15 volunteers who balance the program by location, career stage, and experience. We especially encourage graduate students and early-career professionals to volunteer. We generally ask that people who have done training and Congressional visits for astronomy advocacy before — through programs like AAS CVD, AAAS CASE, facility/collaboration programs, etc. — not volunteer for CVD, as we intend this program to increase the number of astronomers empowered to advocate for science.
Travel Support: AAS has sufficient funds to reimburse most travel expenses related to the AAS CVD, including lodging, transportation, and meals.
How to Sign Up: Sign up for CVD 2022 here. You’ll need to sign in to the website using your AAS username and password to submit the form. The deadline for application to AAS CVD 2022 is 11:59 PM ET Sunday, 27 February 2022. Selected volunteers will be notified by end of March 2022.