The Office of Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy offers an 8 to 10 week internship program during the summer that provides students with a unique educational opportunity while witnessing firsthand the public policy process and the inner workings of our United States Congress.
The Director’s Internship with Congressman McCarthy is designed to give students an understanding of the core functions of a congressional office, including responding to constituent inquiries, researching legislation, and assisting in the development of public policy. Interns are encouraged to observe the legislative process by attending committee meetings, hearings, and briefings. Other duties include but are not limited to leading tours of the U.S. Capitol, assisting the legislative staff with policy research and projects, observing debate on the House Floor, and preparing materials for Congressional briefings.
This internship is unique in that students, in addition to working in a congressional office, will also be given the opportunity to intern in Congressman McCarthy’s leadership office. His role as the Majority Leader will provide interns with an exclusive look into the mechanics of managing the House floor and scheduling legislation for consideration.
Interested internship applicants must possess strong written, verbal and computer skills. The ideal candidate should also be at least a junior in college and have a minimum Grade Point Average of 3.0. More information about the internship can be found at: http://kevinmccarthy.house.gov/services/internships.
2015 Intern Reflection:
For the past 6 weeks I've had the wonderful opportunity to work for my congressman, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy. While working within his district, I worked closely with district staff on casework issues regarding our constituents, many of whom are wounded veterans needing help, and traveled within the district to speak directly with constituents about issues important to them. It was such a blessing to be present in my community and it fills me with pride to see how much California's central valley contributes to our nation.
Having been in DC for 4 weeks now, I have had so many unparalleled experiences already. Having worked in the Leader office in the Capitol, I met and greeted every person who entered the office, including former vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan and other congressmen and women as well as CEO's of major corporations. Answering phones has allowed me to speak to Americans all over the United States about issues that are important to them, and assisting staff with research has helped me understand more specifically how legislation is written, discussed, and voted on and how legislative outcomes dictate future policy. I've greatly enjoyed giving tours of the Capitol and watching the House in session is one of the most exciting things of the internship. The Leader office even hosts intern luncheons, where we discuss Supreme Court decisions, Greece's financial crisis, and media in the political sphere.
When it all started, I had no idea what to expect and certainly did not think I would feel as welcome or at home as I do. I am continually delighted to go to work in the morning and, despite having no academic background in politics or government, feel completely comfortable performing any task because the environment is so conducive to learning. Congressman McCarthy is one of the most friendly politicians out there, and it is such a blessing to be one of his interns.
Brooke Dickens '16
2014 Director's Intern Reflection:
It was 10 PM the night before a major vote series, hundreds of Congressmen were crowded into Kevin McCarthy’s Majority Leader Office, and I was trying my best not to spill a ten-pound tray of baked beans on Paul Ryan when it finally hit me: I, at that very moment, was standing right in the heart of American democracy. Everything about the American democratic process that I had read in textbooks and watched on Schoolhouse Rock had come to life in a way that no textbook or movie jingle (no matter how catchy) could ever recreate. I was watching bills become laws through backroom deals over baked beans.
Working for Congressman McCarthy has given me a behind-the-scenes look at how American government really works. By sitting in on meetings and conducting research, I’ve gotten to understand how bills originate. By attending committee hearings, I’ve gotten to understand how bills are reviewed and debated. And by serving baked beans and chicken sandwiches on late nights, I’ve gotten to understand how bills really get passed. I’ve also gotten to spend hours (and hours and hours) talking to constituents, listening to their concerns and opinions about immigration and gun rights and police control and ISIS and why students shouldn’t get summer break off (I had to disagree with that one). Sometimes, of course, it was tiring listening to people scream about “Brain-Dead Boehner” and “Obama Hussein,” but then again, how exceptional is it that we live in a country where everyday citizens can dial up their Representatives and give them a piece of their mind, four-letter words, insults, and all?
Olivia Goldberg '17