Name: Jordan Richardson
Hometown: North Miami, Florida
What is your major? Public administration
Where are you interning? Running Start, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that trains young women to run for public office.
What is your title? Summer intern
How did you get your internship? Through The Washington Center.
What are you doing there? Assisting with planning and preparation for Running Start programs that empower women. I've worked on the organization's high school program as a mentor to a group of high school girls, and I'm currently planning the Elect Her training. The Elect Her project is a one-day nonpartisan training for women on how to run for student government and political office. I have a number of duties such as reaching out to other interns that would be interested in attending this event, finding catering services and inviting speakers. I also found the perfect venue for the training: FIU in DC. [The university's hub in D.C.—blending the energy of South Florida with the action of the nation's capital—FIU in DC provides a platform for students, alumni, faculty researchers and partners to engage with national thought leaders, co-work and take advantage of academic opportunities.]
How does your internship connect back to your coursework? I’m currently taking coursework on government communications and women and gender studies. My coursework aligns with my internship perfectly.
What is the coolest thing about your internship or that has happened during your internship? The coolest thing about my internship is that I got the chance to be a mentor to several high school students. Running Start's high school program brought 50 girls around the country to Washington, D.C., for a week-long training on how to become a politician. I got to bring some students to FIU in DC to see how FIU's presence in D.C. has helped me during my internship. I also facilitated students meeting Florida Congresswoman Donna Shalala at the capital.
What have you enjoyed most about your experience? I've enjoyed the vibrant city, the fast-paced lifestyle and the help from FIU in DC along the way, which is making my D.C. experience amazing.
What have you learned about yourself? I learned that I am a very adaptive person and I enjoy the fast-paced lifestyle.
What advice do you have for those beginning the internship process? Go for it…. You never know who you'll meet or what experiences you may embark on if you don't take the chance.
How has the position increased your professional confidence? My position has most definitely increased my professional confidence by making me step out of my comfort zone. For example, I’ve been in situations where I've had to speak in front of crowds. In the past public speaking gave me anxiety, but for these assignments I had to speak in public and it helped me develop confidence.
How has the internship expanded your professional network? Through my internship, I've been invited to many networking receptions where I was able to develop a professional network.