One Month in DC:Spring 2016

ASP Spring 2016 has been here just over a month! Here are a few things they have learned in D.C. so far.

I’ve learned “relationship building skills, more about myself, how to plan meals for the week and score free meals!” –Courtney, Taylor University

“Strangers are only friends waiting to be made.” –Sarah, Northwestern College (Iowa)

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“I learned the importance of having confidence in myself, my unique experiences, skills, and abilities.  If you don’t cheer for yourself, who will?” –Adela, Messiah College

I’ve learned “how to be involved in community.”

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“Public transportation isn’t as complicated as it seems — getting groceries, however, is.” –Rachel, Malone University

“I’ve learned to seek the Lord in times of change.” –Patrick, Taylor University

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“I may not be a politician, but I have power as a pedestrian.  I will exercise my power!” –Janet, Fresno Pacific University

I’ve learned “how to be confident in overwhelming situations; how to grocery shop; the value of having coffee with someone and hearing about their experiences.” –Cara, Olivet Nazarene University

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I’ve learned “how to navigate the metro bus system.” –Sarah, Southeastern University

“Networking is important. You need to be confident and approach people, but you also need to be approachable, as well.” –Hannah, Vanguard University

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“No story is too small to share.  No experience is too small to live.  No pizza is too big to eat.” –Ashley, Dordt College

“The right side of the escalator is for tourists, the left side for locals and commuters.” –Stephen, Northwestern College (Iowa)

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Bus Day 2: Spring 2015

As part of the Neighborhood Engagement component of their semester, students participate in several “Bus Days,” scavenger hunts throughout the city.  Click through the slides and videos below to see the experiences of three groups on Bus Day 2 this weekend.

Mount Pleasant in northwest DC:

with Alexcis Albert (Vanguard University), Tim Carr (Gordon College), Alberto Sanchez (Fresno Pacific University), and Patricia Vazquez (Fresno Pacific University)

Brookland in northeast DC:

with Hannah Crites (Franciscan University), Neakzaad Horriat (Biola University), Savannah Scherkenback (Azusa Pacific University), and Chelsea Tyson (Regent University)

Adams Morgan in northwest DC:

with Carolina Alvarado (Taylor University), Katie Barany (Eastern University), Eric Corona (Biola University), Jacob Fusek (Southeastern University), and Danica Smithwick (Union University)

Internship Spotlights I: Spring 2015

The Spring 2015 semester is flying by as students go to their internships and work on their group projects.  Three students took a few moments to report on how their internships are going.

Conference room mural at the Institute for Policy Studies

Conference room mural at the Institute for Policy Studies

Christina McIntyre, Messiah College

I’m a poverty policy intern at the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS). IPS is an activist-oriented think tank of public scholars. Over the past few weeks at IPS, I’ve been learning what it means to be a public scholar: to use research for social change. It’s public service through grassroots, academic, and institutional activism. My research at IPS focuses on economic hardship in the U.S. I’ve written about education inequalities, homelessness, and economic segregation. Currently, I’m helping to coordinate advocacy between Maryland and D.C. lawmakers for criminal justice reform. My internship at IPS has taken me all over the city to hearings on the Hill, meetings with activists at Busboys and Poets, and presentations by Brookings, New America, and other think tanks. Interning in D.C. is an incredible opportunity to engage the issues and ideas I care most about.

albertoAlberto Sanchez, Fresno Pacific University

My name is Alberto Sanchez, and I am currently interning for Senator Johnson’s office. I do a lot of different things in the office. I am slowly becoming accustomed to the internship routine. Every morning, I prepare newspapers for every staff member; I also sort mail appropriately as it comes in. The tasks that I do can seem dull; however, I like to think that I am contributing by serving the American people. There have been a lot of interesting experiences that I have had thus far. For example, the other day I met with my chief of staff. He said that interns are just as important as a chief of staff or legislative aid; he told me that interns deserve respect.  I was proud after the conversation that I had with him. I learned that interns are very important contributors to the welfare of the nation. I also enjoy giving tours of the Capitol. The Capitol is majestically beautiful from the inside. I am very happy that I have the opportunity to intern on the Hill. Lastly, the staff members at Senator Johnson’s office are very nice and cordial. They have told me that I can talk to them whenever I want about anything relating to their field of expertise. Furthermore, I have attended committee hearings that have expanded my knowledge of issues such as immigration, foreign relations, and national security. Clearly, I am learning about the importance of the United States Senate and how interns contribute to the nation’s prosperity.

Amanda Bishop, Biola University

I am the External Affairs intern at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). AEI is a policy think tank that aims to produce the best scholarly work on a variety of issues. Our scholars’ work is published for policymakers and the public to read. My job is to assist in promoting the work put out by AEI scholars and maintaining connections with the public. So… what does that look like on a daily basis? Well, it depends. Some days, I sit in front of a computer screen for 5 or 6 hours, updating a database of contact information. Last week, I went to C-PAC, the Conservative Political Action Conference, where I got to give out books written by AEI scholars and hear speakers like the Former Ambassador to the UN. Sometimes, things get really exciting. For instance, a few weeks back I found myself shaking Newt Gingrich’s hand in a meeting of less than 20 people where I was taking notes. The week after that, I sat in on a presentation about the struggle for freedom in Iraq and afterward said hello the the Iraqi Ambassador.  And instead of being asked to fetch coffee, the AEI provides a fresh carafe of Seattle’s Best for staff and interns every few hours.

One Month in DC: Spring 2015

ASP students have finished their second week of internships and track work and are celebrating one month of being in Washington. What have they learned in D.C. so far?

When you arrive–walk everywhere during your first week! That’s how you get to know the heartbeat of this city.  One of the best “must do” experiences: grocery shopping on weekends at Eastern Market.  Talk to the people.
Savannah Scherkenback, Azusa Pacific University

The city is alive and busy, and so am I.  There is always cool stuff happening if you look.
Katie Barany, Eastern University

ASP students attended an event at George Washington University with Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg {photo credit: Katie Barany}

ASP students attended an event at George Washington University with Supreme Court Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Antonin Scalia {photo credit: Katie Barany}

We aren’t in Vermont anymore.
-Timothy Carr, Gordon College

I have learned that this city is amazing.  I want to keep learning what it takes to be successful in this city.  My internship is very fun.
-Alberto Sanchez, Fresno Pacific University

Lebanese food in DC is delicious (like the “Lebanese Chipotle”).
-Amanda Bishop, Biola University

Biola ASPers joined Biola President Barry Corey on Capitol Hill to meet with Congressman Ed Royce [l-r: Amanda Bishop, President Corey, Congressman Royce, Neakzaad Horriat, Luke Bennett, and Eric Corona] {photo credit: Eric Corona}

Biola ASPers joined Biola President Barry Corey on Capitol Hill to meet with Congressman Ed Royce (CA-39) [l-r: Amanda Bishop, President Corey, Congressman Royce, Neakzaad Horriat, Luke Bennett, and Eric Corona] {photo credit: Amanda Bishop}

There is no excuse for being bored.  There is always something to do, so go do it.
-Luke Bennett, Biola University

D.C. is a wonderful place, full of energy, growth, and vigor.  At the same time, it is a city full of hurt, poverty, and inequality.
-Charlie Richert, Taylor University

Students hang out in the Dellenback [l-r: Rachel Malcolm (Azusa Pacific University), Shelby Holloway (Trinity Western University), Alexcis Albert (Vanguard University of Southern California), Carolina Alvarado (Taylor University), and Norann Beidas (Whitworth University)]

Students hang out in the Dellenback [l-r: Rachel Malcolm (Azusa Pacific University), Shelby Holloway (Trinity Western University), Alexcis Albert (Vanguard University of Southern California), Carolina Alvarado (Taylor University), and Norann Beidas (Whitworth University)]

I have learned the layout of the city and how I can attend amazing events because of this knowledge.
-Norann Beidas, Whitworth University

There are so many kind people in the city that love to discuss anything and everything.  It is so easy to meet cool people like the Mayor of London, and congressional hearings are awesome to see politicians in action.  Come to D.C.–it’s amazing!
-Alexcis Albert, Vanguard University of Southern California

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London Mayor Boris Johnson at a Politico event attended by ASP students {photo credit: Norann Beidas}

Here in D.C., it is never proper to merely ride the escalator; you must expeditiously walk.  Escalators are not fast enough.
-Eric Corona, Biola University

Opportunities are everywhere if you keep your eyes open!
-Jacob Fusek, Southeastern University

So far I think I have started to learn how to network at different events and how to reach out to people who have similar interests.
-Patricia Vazquez Topete, Fresno Pacific University

Oscar Martinez is the author of The Beast (Spanish translation for The Immigrants that Don't Matter). On Wednesvday Feb.  12 he won the WOLA and Duke Human Rights Book Award. The Beast talks about the journey that immigrants take from Central America to the U.S. Mexican Border and the dangerous experiences they encounter. At the book award Martinez said that individuals from El Salvador don't just immigrate but they flee their country.

Salvadorean journalist Oscar Martinez receives the WOLA-Duke Human Rights Book Award at an event hosted by the Washington Office on Latin America, where ASPer Patricia Vazquez Topete is interning.  Mr. Martinez is the author of The Beast which chronicles the journey that immigrants take from Central America to the U.S.-Mexican Border and the dangerous experiences they encounter. {photo credit: Patricia Vazquez Topete}

Everyone is here for a purpose, and if you are here without a purpose, you cannot succeed.  But if you do have a purpose, you will flourish here.
-Neakzaad Horriat, Biola University

I have learned about the interesting dynamic of Washington, D.C.  The poor work and live side by side with the rich.
-Rachel Malcolm, Azusa Pacific University

Never underestimate the metro system.
-Carolina Alvarado, Taylor University

Homeless Liaison for Prince George's County speaking at a panel discussion on child homelessness hosted by the Congressional Homelessness Caucus and Senator Patty Murray's office (WA)

Homeless Liaison for Prince George’s County speaking at a panel discussion on child homelessness hosted by the Congressional Homelessness Caucus and Senator Patty Murray’s office (WA) {photo credit: Christina McIntyre}

The world is bigger than I thought it was! But very different people living in the same place is a beautiful thing.
-Tara Tankersley, North Central University

Advice from someone at my internship — “Never think like an intern!”
-Reuben Van Gaalen, Dordt College

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{photo credit: Katie Barany}