Ontario Legislature Internship Programme (OLIP)

The Churchill Society is a proud sponsor of the Ontario Legislature Internship Programme, which brings eight recent graduates to Queen’s Park every year to work with backbench members of the Legislature. The non-partisan programme was established in 1975 by the Canadian Political Science Association and The Legislative Assembly of Ontario.

The Ontario Legislature Internship Programme is similar in nature and purpose to the Parliamentary Internship Programme for the House of Commons of Canada, which was established by the Canadian Political Association in 1969. Toward the end of 1975 discussions took place between officers of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario and the executive of the C.P.S.A. and agreement was reached that a similar internship programme, to be administered by the C.P.S.A., would be established at Queen’s Park. In January 1976 a formal announcement of the new programme was issued jointly by the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly and the President of the C.P.S.A. and the first group of interns came to Queen’s Park in September 1976.

The focus of the programme is upon the Legislative Assembly as a vital institution of government and, more particularly, upon the role of the backbench Member. Interns provide assistance of various kinds to some of these Members. In this manner the interns are able to supplement their academic training with valuable practical experience. It is expected that they will become thoroughly familiar with the procedures and conventions of the Legislature. At the same time it is hoped that they will contribute in some measure to increasing public knowledge and appreciation of the work of the Legislature. Those interns who return to academic life are more likely to carry out research on legislative bodies and, because of their experience, will be able to give students a better understanding of the important role of the Legislative Assembly in the provincial political system.