- Sam Brier '13, Senator Doug Magnus
- Grace Caird '13, Representative Jean Wagenius
- Molly Forsythe '13, Representative Bob Barrett
- Brennan Meier '13, Representative Kate Knuth
- Michael Costigan-Humes '13, Senator Dick Cohen
- Reed Polakowski '13, Governor Dayton
- Silka Schreiber '13, Representative Connie Doepke / Representative Linda Runbeck
- Robert Williams '12, Senator Julianne Ortman
- Margo Worman '13, Representative Erin Murphy
- Kika Ziesk-Socolov '14, AFSCMEWilly Raedy, 2013, Representative Greg Davids
Most of the week Margo Worman ’13 (Moorhead, Minn.) is a typical political science student at Macalester College. But for 11 hours each week, she becomes a valued staff member for Rep. Erin Murphy (DFL), assistant minority leader of the Minnesota House of Representatives.
This is the kind of class that just cannot be offered at small-town colleges, says Professor Julie Dolan.
Worman’s internship is part of the “Legislative Politics” class she’s enrolled in this semester. Each student in the 11-member class must complete a four-credit internship for a state senator or representative along with taking the four-credit political science class.
Says Professor Julie Dolan, who has taught the course since 2004, “Students say that the ability to marry practice and theory is great. They’re immersed in the actual politics at the Capitol while the class gives them a context and helps them interpret things as they are unfolding.”
Worman, who has long been interested in how government functions, calls the internship “a really good way to gain real world experience.” Because Murphy is a member of both health and human services committees and a nurse by profession, Worman has been researching a lot of health care issues. “I’ve really gotten stretched in terms of expanding my writing and researching skills,” she says. “And I’ve a far better understanding of what’s going in Minnesota.”
This is the kind of class that just cannot be offered at small-town colleges, says Dolan. “It’s fantastic to be in a state capital and a vibrant one at that and be teaching this class,” she says. “There is so much more opportunity here in the Twin Cities to tap into internships like these.”
Dolan noted that she is also able to attract high-quality class speakers because of Macalester’s urban location. A favorite speaker this semester was veteran TV political reporter Pat Kessler '79, who led “a fascinating conversation about the role of media in state politics.”
As for Worman, taking “Legislative Politics” has only confirmed to her the wisdom of choosing Macalester. “Part of why I picked this college was because it was in a big city and a state capitol. I can hop in my car and be at the Legislature in minutes. And I’ve loved working there.”