By: Mollie Lastovica
Five recent graduates of the Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communications are currently working as interns in Washington D.C. Mickeala Carter, Meagan Ghormley, Josiah Griffin, Morgan Head and Justin Reyes are participants in the fall 2013 Agricultural and Natural Resources Policy Internship Program.
The ANRP program was created in 1990 and allows students to gain practical work experience while learning about public policy and government. Each semester and in the summer, ANRP sends students and recent graduates of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences to work in D.C. When the state legislature is in session, ANRP coordinates Austin interns as well.
“I chose to do ANRP after graduation, because it looked like an opportunity to network in a politically-enhanced environment,” Head, an August 2013 agricultural leadership and development graduate, said. “I thought it could give clarity to my future career and what I want to do specifically.”
Head serves as an intern for the Office of Congressman Jeb Hensarling.
For Ghormley, a May agricultural communications and journalism graduate, interning for the Office of Congressman Kevin Brady serves as a stepping stone to her dream career.
“I am really hoping to make connections that will not only help me get into law school, but will also help when I complete law school,” Ghormley said. “There is someone in my office that has followed the path I would really like to take and I am looking to him for guidance.”
ANRP interns from the ALEC department are using the skills they acquired through their coursework to successfully serve their respective offices.
“ALEC has taught me so much about working with people who have different leadership styles,” said Carter, who graduated with a degree in agricultural leadership and development in August. “I take those pointers with me every time I am working with a group of people.”
She works for the Office of Congressman Filemon Vela.
Similarly, Ghormley has applied her communications knowledge to her daily tasks.
“As a communications major, I was worried that I would not be able to use the skills that I learned throughout school,” Ghormley said. “However, I have been able to use these skills not only in managing the website, but also by being in charge of my congressman’s Pinterest.”
All of the interns are grateful for the opportunity to work in D.C. and believe that this internship will assist them in their future professional and personal endeavors.
“It is truly an experience to say ‘I work on the Hill’,” Head said. “From the time I filled out my application to sitting in the hot seat during interviews, all the way to the desk I sit at now as an ANRP intern, I have not only gained knowledge of how to present myself in a professional business environment, but also grasped the concept of how powerful a handshake can be.”
Applications for the spring and summer 2014 ANRP internships are available online and due Oct. 18. More information about the current interns and the ANRP program can be found on the program website.