A Director's Internship in the office of U.S. Senator Shaheen is an excellent way to learn firsthand how our government works, and to play an important role in a U.S. Senate office. Students will have the opportunity to gain valuable knowledge and experience by assisting the Senator's professional staff with administrative tasks and press.
Legislative and correspondence duties. The Director's Intern will be able to observe the inner workings of the federal government. Working with the Washington staff gives students a chance to see how the Senate functions, and how it interacts with the other branches of government. Additionally, interns are encouraged to take advantage of everything Capitol Hill has to offer, including listening to floor debate, attending congressional hearings, seminars and speeches, utilizing Senate research facilities, and visiting Washington's museums. The Director's Intern will be required to participate in a broad range of office operations, ensuring a well-rounded experience.
2017 Intern Reflection:
Working on the Hill has been amazing because every day offers the chance of a new experience. One of the coolest tasks is running papers over to the cloak room. This small errand allows you to walk into the beautiful halls of the Capitol and almost guarantees you a Senator sighting. Other tasks like giving tours allow you to learn the history of the building and wander into the famous Rotunda; theses jobs have made me realize what an honor it is for me to work in our nation’s Capital. The atmosphere is exciting and you constantly feel like you are at the epicenter of the country’s political activity.
The daily tasks of the internship include logging constituent mail into a database, answering calls at the front desk, and finding news clips for the press team. I have truly enjoyed hearing constituents opinion’s because it has made me appreciate the wide range of opinions that exist in this country. Beyond these duties, it is the extra tasks given to you by the staff that make the internship meaningful. We were encouraged to reach out to the legislative correspondents and assistants who handle the topics we are interested in and once you do so, they are very receptive to speaking with you and to giving you opportunities. I have attended a briefing on telecommunications, written a Statement of Awareness about health care, and drafted a memo regarding energy. Each experience has shaped my understanding of how the executive branch functions and given me further admiration of the work done in the federal government
Heather Brown '19
2016 Intern Reflection:
Working in the office of US Senator Jeanne Shaheen has been a truly eye-opening experience and has exposed me to a wide variety of professional and political viewpoints that will continue to inform my own perspective long after this internship has concluded. As a wide-eyed freshman working on Capitol Hill for the first time, I was immediately overwhelmed by the sheer speed the Hill moves with, despite the incredible national impact of the decisions being made on a daily basis. Especially during the early portion of my internship, I found myself feeling shocked at how quickly our nation’s policies and laws can be impacted by current events. For example, following the tragic Orlando shooting that occurred halfway through my time with the Senator, the House of Representatives immediately reacted with impassioned speeches and a daylong sit-in on the House floor – a sit-in that I was able to witness from the gallery firsthand between delivery trips to the Capitol. This sit-in resulted in four gun-control bills being introduced to the Senate the following week, and had an immediate impact in framing the national gun-violence debate that we have watched unfold throughout the current election cycle.
While these moments of firsthand experience with matters of national importance make for good stories, it is the daily work of managing constituent communications I think will leave the most lasting memories from my time with Senator Shaheen. Throughout the thousands of impassioned phone calls, letters, and faxes constituents send to our office on a daily basis, I was able to glimpse a passion for and trust in our nation’s politics that I had never experienced before. Interacting with and understanding this passion has informed my own political views, and has emphasized to me the unique and tremendous impact that politics can have on the lives of everyday Americans. Thus, I am incredibly grateful to the Harvard Institute of Politics, as well as the Office of US Senator Jeanne Shaheen, for affording me this once-in-a-lifetime experience. I look forward to employing the knowledge and skills I learned from this internship throughout my academic and professional future.
Adam Moshen - Breen '19