About Learning Life

Learning Life is a Washington, DC-based nonprofit lab devoted to innovating education, democracy and diplomacy by spreading learning in everyday life beyond school walls. In our increasingly interconnected yet divided world, we develop innovative learning communities in order to widen and deepen participation in democracy and diplomacy.

Our DMV Democracy Learning Community (DMV DLC) is a nascent association of individuals and organizations in the Washington DC or DC-MD-VA (DMV) metro area working together to strengthen democracy by developing engaging events, products, services and spaces that nurture fun, learning, networking, collaboration and wider, deeper citizen participation.  More about DLCs here.

About the Democracy Fellows

Learning Life is accepting resumes from qualified individuals in or from metro Washington DC interested in volunteering as a DMV Democracy Fellows (Fellows or DFs) for one year, renewable upon mutual agreement, to help with building the DLC.

Fellows work about 2-4 hours per week, and may assist with one or more of the following tasks:

  1. Interviewing diverse metro DC democracy stakeholders, that is, individuals and organizational representatives working in politics, business, education, the arts, community development, etc. to identify collaborators in building the DLC.
  2. Research and/or writing to deepen our collective understanding, and to advance the DLC concept through co-authored articles.
  3. Identifying and pursuing sources of funding for the DLC.
  4. Participating in DF task meetings with Learning Life’s Director, Paul Lachelier, and in some cases, undergraduate interns — every 1-2 weeks, to go over tasks DFs have each accomplished and discuss new tasks.  For convenience, task meetings will usually be via Zoom.
  5. Participating occasionally in Learning Life’s in-person Democracy Dinners to network and learn from metro DC democracy professionals and advocates.

Fellows are volunteers.  Benefits include: (a) making meaningful connections with professionals working in democracy-related fields; (b) enriching your understanding of democracy, community and education; (c) contributing to an innovative initiative to strengthen democracy in the nation’s capital region that can serve long-term as an international model; and (d) from Paul Lachelier, a reference, recommendation letter, and informational interview connections upon request, given satisfactory performance of the Fellow’s duties.

Applicants We Are Looking for and How to Apply

Applicants can be Master’s or Ph.D. students, working professionals, or retirees, but should be in or from the metro DC area, and have deeper demonstrated interest in politics, education and/or community, whether via study, volunteering and/or work.  Experience with community organizing (especially in the DMV), entrepreneurship, conducting interviews, and/or writing for popular or academic publications are pluses, but not required.

To apply, send your resume and a writing sample to  No need for a cover letter unless there are details you wish to share not covered in your resume.  Please indicate in your email when you can start.  We will contact you to schedule an interview if your application matches what we are looking for.  Thank you for your interest!