CSUDH Wants You: to Intern in DC

By Alex Graf
News Editor

Have you ever wanted to see the true size of the Lincoln Memorial (hint: it’s bigger than the representation on the back of the penny)? Ever wanted to see the favorite chair of American’s First Bigot (no, not that one–Archie Bunker of “All in the Family” fame, whose chair used in the filming of the classic 1970s sitcom sits in the Smithsonian Museum)?

Ever wondered what it would be like to live and work in the nation’s capital, as an intern for Congress, a federal agency or a news organization?

Your chance may be here: CSUDH students have the opportunity to apply for an internship in Washington D.C. this summer with the Cal State DC Scholars program. The program runs from May 29 to Aug. 3, 2019 and includes a wide variety of internships for all majors. The estimated cost for students is upwards of $4,000 for travel, tuition, and living expenses. The deadline for application is Dec. 3, 2019.

Students must apply for the program and those with a GPA of 3.0 or higher will receive preferential treatment. GPA, however, will not be the only factor taken into consideration for applicants and Lisa Mastramico, CSUDH arts and humanities internship coordinator, describes the application process as “not super competitive.”

“You need a letter of recommendation from a faculty member,” Mastramico said. “You have to write a brief essay explaining why you’re a strong candidate to go. You need a cover letter and a resume.”

Mastramico also said there are a series of brief essay questions that ask about prior internship experience, extracurricular activities and relevant skills among other things.

The Cal State DC Scholars program has been run out of California State University, Fullerton since 2006 and is open to all CSU students during summer intersession. Depending on their major, students can intern with members of Congress, federal agencies, museums, and news organizations as well as a wide variety of other internship opportunities. In the past, students have interned with the Washington Post, Senator Kamala Harris, and the U.S. Department of Education to name a few.  According to Mastramico, students will be able to find housing through the Washington Intern Student Housing program.

Students will have to register for six units of courses through CSUF with tuition for these units coming to about $1,900. In addition, students will have to cover roughly $3,200 in housing costs, $500 in travel expenses, as well as any additional living expenses. CSUF will reimburse students $1,250 for participating in the program.

Unfortunately, not every student has the cash necessary to participate in a program like this.

“I’d say it’s worth it, but I don’t think I’d be able to afford it,” clinical sciences student Josh Chua said. “I feel like if housing was covered, it would be more affordable.”

Mastramico acknowledged the difficulty some students may have with paying for the program but said the experience is well worth it.

“I know the cost is challenging,” Mastramico said. “I put myself through undergrad; that would have been hard for me too. It’s just an experience that you can’t really match with anything else. You’re going to the center of where decisions are made in this country, you’re meeting incredible people and getting incredible networking opportunities.”

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