Hometown: Jackson, MI

Major: Political Science

Minor: History of Law and Policy

Internship Placement: US Senator Debbie Stabenow


Why did you decide to do Michigan in Washington?

I love Michigan and its wonderful seasons and weather, but college is all about exploring what you love and what you might want to do for a living. I decided to apply to MIW because I love politics; I have majored in it, read it, and breathe it. But also, I have longed to return to DC since the first time I visited this amazing city. MIW allowed me to use the skills I have chosen to perfect and apply those to a real-life job, as well as living in DC and exploring my love for politics and the city.

What do you do during a typical day at your internship?

Luckily for me, my internship is always different. I am the scheduling intern for Senator Stabenow (D-MI), which means any request by constituents, organizations, government agencies, or other Senators or Representatives comes through my inbox. Often I file these emails in designated folders, for the ones the Senator cannot attend I send a little "regret" and let the asking party know that she will be unable to participate, and other times I assist in the planning of events, such as the Congressional Black Caucus Breakfast that both Senators from Michigan host every year. I also get to go on many adventures with my amazing boss, Krystal. This can be walking things over to the hideaway office in the Capitol, running things to the cloakroom, or going on trips with her to find rooms and ensure constituents' meetings are all set up.

What's something that you're proud of that you've done at your internship so far?

When I first joined, Senator Peters and Stabenow were preparing for the CBC Breakfast. I had told Krystal I was interested in helping and would like to do whatever she thought I could handle. So, she handed over the reservation list. I then began to keep track of those who RSVP'd, those who were adding guests, last-minute changes, cancellations, and setting up additional meetings on the side. In addition, the day before the event, I also created and printed special name tags for the Staff so they would stick out, and I printed off name tags for all guests who were attending (over 110 name tags in total - and there were still more people who showed up afterward)! I am beyond grateful and proud that I was allowed to handle such an event and have an active hand in helping set up.

How has your skillset evolved or changed since you began working on this internship?

Before this internship, I had a lot of ideas about what I thought politics looked like and how it all happened behind the scenes – the truth was, I did not. Since being in DC and working in the US Senate, I have discovered that some of the knowledge I have learned is not as important as I thought, while some of the smaller things have become more important. I have worked on some Banking Policies, waited outside members-only briefings with Krystal, and assisted with scheduling memos and events. This has fine-tuned the skills I have learned in class already. Learning to observe, write policy memos, attention to detail, and keep track of essential changes in the Senator's schedule and legislation. I have learned to adapt to more stressful situations, think faster, write more concisely and pinpoint exact details, and am more efficient.

What is one fun activity that you have done since being in DC?

I have done so many fun things in DC. From the city-wide tour when we first arrived, the networking event of MIW Alum, and attending Bus Boys and Poets for class, there is never a day in DC where there is not something fun happening. Frequently, the cohort will plan something, and we go out to eat, attend farmers markets, go to bookstores and museums, and the list goes on and on. There are plenty of opportunities in DC to do something unique and fun!

What advice would you give to a student interested in Michigan in Washington?

DO IT! I almost didn't apply. I thought there was no way that I would get into this program, and even if I did, it would be too much and too far. When I received an email from Amber saying the deadline was extended, I thought this could be my final chance before I graduate. And here I am. I am having the time of my life. The people I am with are amazing and fun; they keep me on my toes. The classes are unique and exciting, with some even tailored to what you want to research and explore. The events hosted by the program and the city provide excellent networking opportunities and chances to explore new parts of the city – and even make friends with interns from other universities. Even if a silver of your mind thinks, "I don't think I'm cut out enough for this," chances are, you are more than cut out for it – you just need to trust yourself and your advisors!