As I walked in to Congresswoman Kim Schrier’s District Office on my first day of work, I felt a little bit like a young Leslie Knope from Parks and Recreation: bright eyed, innocent, and wholeheartedly ready to be a cog in the great wheel that is democracy. Now that I have settled in, I still catch glimpses of Leslie’s eager and earnest personality in myself as I answer a constituent’s phone call, read the myriad letters that are addressed to Congresswoman Schrier regarding legislation, or review new legislation being introduced in the House of Representatives in our weekly briefing emails.
Despite sometimes feeling a little bit like Leslie Knope, unfortunately, I am not. My name is Sarah Bosworth, and I am a rising junior and politics major from Snoqualmie, Washington with a passion for law and government. In the summer of 2018, I worked as a field intern with Dr. Kim Schrier’s Campaign for Congress, and I am overjoyed that I can continue serving her as an intern in the Issaquah district office this summer.
Congresswoman Schrier is the representative for Washington State’s 8th Congressional District, which encompasses large swaths of King and Pierce County, the Cascade mountains, and parts of Eastern Washington. It is one of the most geographically and politically diverse districts in the state of Washington and Congresswoman Schrier is the first Democrat to ever hold the seat in the history of the 8th District. Therefore, everything about this office is in its primary stages. In fact, I have the honor of being the very first intern ever hired to Congresswoman Schrier’s district office, which is a pretty neat bragging point.
Throughout my few weeks here in the office, I begun the task of updating many of the outdated resources. I have grown in my knowledge of both the different organizations and opportunities the 8th District has to offer residents, as well as how to format lengthy documents in Microsoft Word. I have been able to communicate with leaders of non-profit groups, hospitals, and the constituents of the 8th district. I have met and worked with the other district office interns in person and I have been electronically introduced to our counterparts in the Congresswoman’s Washington, D.C. office. And, of course, the most exciting – I was able to help staff the Congresswoman herself at a tour of a local teen center.
Forming connections with these individuals has been one of the most integral parts of my internship. It is an unbelievably cool experience; I get to rub elbows with my co-workers in the district office who so casually mention elected representatives that I have only ever seen on the news. This internship has allowed me to see that our elected representatives are so much more than the carefully curated personalities that news media makes them out to be. Our representatives are not just two-dimensional photos in a news clipping or quotes in a press briefing. They are living, breathing, intelligent, caring human beings who are working on behalf of their constituents every single day (and trust me, I have seen the Congresswoman’s calendar – there are no breaks). The constant enthusiasm and compassion that I have seen the Congresswoman and my colleagues in the district office show for the constituents of the 8th district is inspiring, and I am beyond grateful for this opportunity to play a role in the processes of government that shape our nation.
With that said, you too can play a role in shaping the future of the United States. So, here’s my shameless plug for civil engagement: call the office of your representative, be nice to the intern or staff member that picks up the phone, and pass along a message about a cause or bill that is important to you. Your voice does matter. Take it from me, your friendly, neighborhood Congressional intern!
Experiences like Sarah Bosworth’s are made possible by the Whitman Internship Grant, which provides funding for students to participate in unpaid internships at both for-profit and non-profit organizations. To learn how you could secure a Whitman Internship Grant or host a Whitman intern at your organization, click here or contact Assistant Director for Internship Programs Victoria Wolff