This winter was a busy time for student internships. Eleven of our students won spots in the prestigious Washington State Legislative Internship program in Olympia – which meant once again UW Tacoma sent more students to participate in this program than did any other school in the state. Students interned with senators and representatives during the past legislative session. In addition to their office work, interns participated in weekly academic seminars and workshops, met with state officials, took part in a budget exercises, and participated in mock hearings and mock floor debates. Many also had opportunities to shadow an elected official or administrator of a state agency, and take a trip to Victoria, B.C. to compare law making in Canada with law making in the US. Seven other PPPA students interned for members of the US Congress here in Tacoma (Rep. Derek Kilmer) and Seattle (Sen. Patty Murray), while three went to Washington, DC to work for Rep. Kilmer, Rep. Adam Smith, and Sen. Maria Cantwell. One other intern worked at Joint Base Ft. Lewis-McChord, and a final was the ASUWT representative in Olympia.
This quarter also saw one of our students, Michael Wotherspoon (a senior, majoring in Law and Policy) intern in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. He is still there studying Russian and writing for Spektator Magazine, a publication that reports on Central Asian affairs. Our man in Bishkek is writing articles about democratic reform and freedom of religion in the Kyrgyz Republic — a topic he’ll share with us during a May 29th seminar.