CBCF Welcomes Congressional Summer Interns

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Stellar Program Brings Policy Making Process to Life for Students

With recent election activities on a national and state level, we are seeing a generation that's increasingly committed to being involved in the political process.

The Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, Inc., (CBCF) welcomed 40 undergraduate students and recent graduates from across the country to its Congressional Internship Program. The students will spend the next two months working in congressional offices where they will observe first-hand how the Hill works and how federal legislation is developed. Interns will create and participate in a summer-long “Model Congress,” lead a community service project that serves Washington area residents and participate in several workshops with Congressional members, corporate executives and leaders in the non profit industries as they experience the many different aspects of leadership. In addition, they will use social media to record their experiences.

“Much of CBCF’s reputation and certainly our mission are built on the success of our Congressional internship program,” said A. Shuanise Washington, president and chief executive officer for the Foundation. “We are known internationally for our competitive, intensive nine-week program that gives a behind-the-scenes look into the democratic process. This is such a rewarding experience because we bring the students in as individuals and they leave as a cohort with a strong sense of what it is like to be involved in public service. ”

CBCF created its internship program in 1976 to address the under-representation of black professional staff on Capitol Hill. Today, in addition to the Congressional Internship program, the Foundation has the Emerging Leaders and Communications internships, as well as several fellowships for post-graduate studies. Both the intern and fellows programs are described as one of the top public policy training experiences in Washington, D.C.

Since its inception, more than 1,300 students have participated in Foundation internships. More than 300 well-qualified students applied for the summer 2013 session, an 11 percent increase from last summer. “With recent election activities on a national and state level, we are seeing a generation that's increasingly committed to being involved in the political process,” said Marjorie Innocent, Ph.D. vice president of Research & Programs at CBCF. “This is also a cohort that participates in community service activities and understands the importance of giving back to their communities. Creating and working in public policy is an extension of this mindset,” she said.

CBCF’s internships programs are open to full-time and recent college graduates. For more information on criteria and deadlines, go to http://www.cbcfinc.org.

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Muriel Cooper

Jada Irwin
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