Clements Legislative Study Program
About the Program
Founded in 2009, the TCCRI Clements Legislative Study Program is a project of the Texas Conservative Coalition Research Institute (TCCRI) that gives conservative college students the opportunity to learn about public policy development up close and firsthand as interns at the Texas Capitol. The Program is the largest of its kind in Texas for conservative college students.
Each Texas legislative session, TCCRI places scholars in the office of a state legislator who is a member of the Texas Conservative Coalition (TCC), the conservative caucus of the Texas Legislature. While college courses in civics, government, and history are an integral part of a student’s educational experience, the Texas Legislature presents a unique learning environment for students interested in public service and public policy. Through the Clements Legislative Study Program, TCCRI helps ensure that its founding principles – Limited Government, Individual Liberty, Free Enterprise, and Traditional Values – are instilled in the next generation of conservative leaders.
In addition to the experience that our scholars gain through working in legislative offices while the Legislature is in session, TCCRI staff also convenes regular meetings for the scholars at which they hear from prominent Texas conservatives, including Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, former Comptroller Susan Combs, Texas State University System Chancellor Brian McCall, and TCCRI Board Members, including Mike Toomey and Lara Keel.
Lt. Governor Dan Patrick serves as the legislative chairman of the program, and Rossanna Salazar and Logan Spence serve as the program’s private sector chairmen. To date, forty-one scholars have graduated through the Program. Many of the scholars continue to work in public policy today, including as chiefs of staff in the Texas Capitol, as well as in executive branch agencies, and in political media outlets.
As President Ronald Reagan famously said, “Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.” TCCRI’s Clements Legislative Study Program rises to that challenge in Texas by ensuring that conservative college students can begin to learn about the legislative process before they graduate, giving them the foundation to influence Texas’ policy and political landscape for decades to come.