Newsletter Written by Mac Students
Macalester’s location has proven to be more beneficial than I ever could have anticipated. Last year, I interned under Senator Ron Latz and his legislative assistant in the state capitol, which allowed me to experience firsthand the things I was learning about in the classroom.
“Macalester’s location has proven to be more beneficial than I ever could have anticipated.”
The Minnesota State Capitol is just four miles from Macalester. Throughout the legislative session, I worked three or four days a week, putting in an average of 15–20 hours. Capitol interns assist senators and representatives in researching and developing bills, building party unity, and implementing constituent outreach. The only way to really understand the process is to work at the ground level, knee-deep in the nitty-gritty details and debates that shape public policy for an entire state.
One of the most powerful learning experiences for me was watching my senator interact with a group of 30 or so anti-abortion student advocates, who had come to lobby him. I saw the difficult job that senators have in balancing the desires of competing interests of a constituency with their own personal views—a nearly impossible task! Senator Latz did not abandon his pro-choice position, but listened intently to the concerns of these advocates, and calmly explained his position.
The Twin Cities are a unique and vibrant community, and my college experiences, both inside and outside the classroom, are unlike anything I could have envisioned in Kalispell, Montana.