Capitol Fellowship Program

The CLLARO Capitol Fellowship Program provides public policy training to college students--typically the first in their families to attend college--and places them in paid internships with state legislators and other public officials and policy advocates during the Colorado legislative session.

2024 Cohort Application

2024 Cohort Applications | Applications for the 2024 cohort will be available online starting June 2023. Rolling admissions will go through October 2023.

The CLLARO Capitol Fellowship Program helps college students develop a practical  understanding of legislative processes and public policy making. Students are admitted to the  program annually on a competitive basis. CLLARO places each fellow in the office of a  participating state legislator, other public official, or public policy advocate. Students receive a  $875/month stipend from CLLARO throughout the regular legislative session.  


Each fellow is required to devote 20 hours per week to the program while staying current with any college courses in which they are concurrently enrolled. Fellows attend an orientation for all  General Assembly interns in early January plus additional training by CLLARO before the  session begins. Throughout the fellowship, fellows will spend fifteen hours a week on  policy-related tasks assigned by their host office. Examples of assignments may include researching policy or community problems, preparing fact sheets, monitoring specific bills, taking notes at committee hearings or caucus meetings, staffing town hall meetings, and  answering constituent inquiries. 

Fellows are required to help CLLARO welcome and orient visitors to the capitol on the annual Latino Advocacy Day. CLLARO staff will visit capitol offices during the session to hear suggestions and resolve any concerns legislators or their staff  might have about fellows’ performance or the fellowship program in general.  

Fellows are required to attend CLLARO in-service training and policy seminars at the capitol or Mi Casa Resource Center (location may change) every Friday from 11:00AM to 2:00PM. Seminars  feature expert guest speakers on a variety of policy topics.


The Friday seminar topics are divided into the following categories:

About the Colorado Legislature and the Policy making Process in Colorado

Learning objectives: 

Demonstrate conceptual and practical understanding of state legislative policy making  processes and structures. 

Describe the role and internal processes of legislative committees and relevant House and  Senate leaders, including their roles and responsibilities.  

Explain the roles and functions of legislative service agencies; i.e., the Joint Budget  Committee Staff, the Legislative Council Staff, the Office of Legislative Legal Services, and the  Office of the State Auditor.  

Describe legislative functions and roles of leaders, committee chairs, members, and staff of the  House and the Senate of the Colorado General Assembly, including ethical expectations and role  constraints affecting each of those positions.  

Describe roles of the Governor, the Attorney General, and the Colorado Supreme Court with  respect to the legislative process and other policy decisions.  

Track legislation, starting with introduction of a bill and ending with final disposition. 

Use appropriate tools for monitoring legislation, including the legislature’s daily calendar,  committee schedules, official and unofficial on-line resources, and professional interaction with  public officials, public employees, and members of advocacy groups.  

Policies & issues impacting Latinos in Colorado

Learning objectives: 

Give examples illustrating how specific policy, legislative, or budgetary decisions might affect  Colorado residents, organizations, and institutions, including low-wealth, low-income minority  residents and communities.  

Develop or anticipate potentially effective policy advocacy strategies and tactics grounded in  accurate understanding of legislative processes and legislators’ political and personal interests  and perspectives.  


Learning objectives:

Understand your own leadership style, and learn new skills for effective leadership as a CLLARO Capitol Fellow and beyond.

Explain how and why policymakers and advocates might appropriately practice the art of  political compromise while advancing the cause of social justice.  

Civic Engagement

Learning objectives:

Describe or use of advocacy and lobbying techniques used by specific agencies or advocacy  groups, including those advocating for low-income, low-wealth minority populations and  specific populations at risk. 

Learn how to increase personal civic engagement, and how to engage the community. 

Identify potential career options for fellows themselves that might advance the interests of  those minority populations and other populations at risk.  

Personal Finances

Learning objectives: 

Learn about resources available to the Latino community, learn financial management and planning, and examine strategies for good financial decision making. 

Learn about different financial institutions, how to invest, and learn the process of becoming a first time home buyer. 


1. First check in: first few days at the Capitol, research projects, pre-program  survey, the Colorado legislative process overview. Presenter/speaker: Alejandra Colmenero

3. CLLARO’s advocacy priorities: past, present, future  Presenter/speaker: Zarah Levy, Advocacy Manager, CLLARO

4. Legislative work as an intern: policy research & analysis, creating a fact sheet. Presenter/speaker: Hon.Tony Hernandez

5. Key roles of the federal, state, and local government Presenter/speaker: Hon.Tony Hernandez

6. Aging Latinos: why is this an issue? CARE program at CLLARO Presenter/speaker: Dr. Mike Cortés, and Bibian Labra Reyes, CARE Program Director, CLLARO

7. Latino Advocacy Day: Your role as Lobby Leads, policy issue areas Presenter/speaker: COLOR staff, Patricia Ferrero, Protegete Leadership Program Manager

8. Latino Caucus policy issue areas Presenter/speaker: Latino Caucus Member

9. Joint Budget Committee & State Budget Process Presenter/speaker: Colorado Fiscal Institute 

10. Immigration issues Presenter/speaker: Arturo Jimenez, Immigration Attorney

11. Affordable housing, homelessness, gentrification Presenter/speaker: Gary Fuentes, Community Mortgage Banker, UMB Bank and NAHREP Northern Co Board Member, ACLU of Colorado

12.Access to healthcare, health equity Presenter/speaker: Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, The Colorado Health Foundation

13.Oral health equity Presenter/speaker: Mirella Chavez, Delta Dental of Colorado Foundation Program Officer

14.Education: k-12 and Higher Ed Presenter/speaker: Colorado Children’s Campaign, and Chancellor Chris Garcia

15. LGBTQ policy issues, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Presenter/speaker: ONE Colorado, and Rep. Alex Valdez

16.Climate change, environmental issues Presenter/speaker: Protegete by Conservation Colorado, and EcoCycle 

17.Redistricting: why is this done and how? Presenter/speaker: Alex Apodaca-Cobell, and Dr. Mike Cortzés

18. Civic engagement: volunteering, community engagement, organizational involvement, government work and electoral participation Presenter/speaker: New Era Colorado

19. Personal finances: credit, investing, retirement, first time home buyer Presenter/speaker: FirstBank 

20. The role of the Attorney General Presenter/speaker: Colorado  Attorney General 

21.The role of the Colorado Supreme CourtPresenter/speaker: Justice Monica Marquez

22. The role of the Governor’s office Presenter/speaker: Colorado Governor


  • Saturday, November 12,2022 - Program orientation at Mi Casa Resource Center (345 S Grove St. Denver), 8:30AM-2:30PM 
  • Friday, December 16, 2022 - Fellows and host offices Meet & Greet  at Mi Casa Resource Center 
  • Week of January 2, 2023 - Legislative training at State Capitol for interns and staff, exact date TBD (check with your legislative host office if applicable)
  • Wednesday, January 4, 2023 - CFP 2023 Cohort State Capitol tour, 10:30AM-11:30AM
  • Friday, January 6, 2023 - First Friday Meeting (virtual) Prepping for the first day of Session. 
  • Monday, January 9 - First day of the First Regular Session of the 74th Colorado General Assembly 
  • We will be meeting weekly every Friday starting on January 6, 2023 until May 12, 2023 from 11AM-2PM in person at Mi Casa Resource Center. Virtual meetings may be conducted under certain circumstances and will be announced prior to the meeting date. All Friday meetings are mandatory. The last Friday meeting will be May 12. 
  • Friday, May 26, 2023 - CFP 2023 graduation ceremony 5PM-7:30PM

Capitol Fellowship ProgramCapitol Fellowship Program

No items found.

No items found.

No items found.

Get more information

future fellows & mentors

For questions regarding the fellowship, contact Alejandra Colmenero

Download the CFP magazine!

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt. Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet.

Photos from previous cohorts

More videos