Michigan in Washington Program
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Martha (Marty) Koenig Bindeman passed away on Thursday, October 5, 2017 surrounded by her loved ones.
The Michigan in Washington Program remembers former MIW Advisory Board Member (2005-2012) and UM alumnus Roger Wilkins, who died March 26, 2017 in the Washington, DC suburb of Kensington, Maryland.
What is Michigan in Washington?
The MIW program offers an opportunity each year for 45-50 undergraduates from any major to spend a semester (Fall or Winter) in Washington D.C. Students combine coursework with an internship that reflects their particular area of interest (such as American politics, international studies, history, the arts, public health, economics, the media, the environment, science and technology). The semester in Washington is rigorous. Students work during the day, attend classes in the evenings, and explore the city on weekends. They cook their own meals and use the Metro system for transportation. Most leave Washington longing to return.
Students are free to pursue internships of their own choosing. They are coached in internship searching strategies as part of a prep class that is taken the semester before going to D.C. Students have interned at the White House, the Smithsonian, CNN, CBS, Public Defender’s Service, Washington Institute for Near East Policy, NAACP, The Brookings Institution, American Enterprise Institute, National Defense University, Partnership for Public Service, Center for American Progress, Congressional Black Caucus Foundation and many others.
Scholarships are available for this living and learning program.
Student of the Week
Name: Asritha Vinnakota
Hometown: Born in Columbia, SC; moved to Novi, MI at age 8
Major: Political Science Minor: Law, Justice, and Social Change
Internship Placement: National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty
Why did you decide to do Michigan in Washington?
I had been interested in doing MIW since freshman year. It is such an amazing and unique opportunity for a political science undergrad, like me, to be living their dream working in the most powerful city in the country. This program gives me the invaluable chance to see what a future career would be like in DC and further my interests in non-profit and public interest work.
What are some of the projects you have been working on at your internship?
My work at the Law Center mainly focuses on domestic violence victims and how to help them find housing. My current research project is researching the specific housing needs and protections for sexual assault victims and how current legislation can better accommodate to their needs. I helped write an article in our organization’s newsletter for domestic violence awareness month.
What elective are you taking and is there anything interesting you have been learning/doing for this class?
I’m currently taking the elective US Foreign Policy in the Middle East where we study various Middle East countries and America’s respective relations and policies with each country. I came into this class only knowing the basics of our foreign policy, so it has been a huge learning experience, reading and talking about the history, reasoning, and consequences of such important policies and decisions.
What has been your coolest moment in D.C. so far?
The coolest moment definitely by far has been being involved in my organization’s own award show where they commend people who have made extraordinary contributions and done great advocacy work for the homeless population. It was a really special night for the Law Center, and I got to meet a lot of interesting people there like Senator Cory Booker and Vernon Davis.
What are you looking forward to for the rest of the semester?
A couple of other Michigan students and I are going to go see Mean Girls at the National Theater, so that will be really fun! I’m excited to take in as much of DC as I can within the next few weeks I have here.
Anything else you want to share?
If I could do the program every year, I would! I’ve had a great time living and working here and definitely want to come back in the future!
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