Gateway Bursary: Public Affairs in Washington DC

I began my internship on the 18th of June 2012, in the Public Affairs department/ Office of Commemorations of the US Navy in Washington DC. Besides getting to live and work in one of the most exciting cities in the world, my time here has given me fantastic insight into the working world and provided me a priceless opportunity to network with professionals that will, once I have graduated help me get a job in a similar field.

My internship was based on the celebration the Bicentennial anniversary of the War of 1812, so most of the projects that I have worked on so far have been related to that. Along with the two other interns we have been responsible for the media research and analysis (print, television and social media) of events in each of the east coast cities in order to gage the level at which the Navy are “communicating” with the public.

I also independently worked on a project for the upcoming annual Navy outreach meeting- my submission was a piece on how to use social media to get the youth interested in the Navy, and was actually included in the pitch for an annual meeting being held in Washington today.
Other highlights include working on the Navy’s oral history project, working alongside a London production company on set for an upcoming documentary on the Cuban missile crisis, writing feature articles for the Navy War of 1812 website and posting event schedules online for the events taking place in the Great Lakes in the autumn months. My internship has also provided me the opportunity to travel; I have been involved in projects in Maryland, New York and Virginia.

The experience that I have had here in Washington, I feel could not be matched had I opted to stay in the UK and find a similar position. Working in Capitol Hill is a unique experience and enables you to network unlike any other city, everybody that you work with has or at least knows someone that can give you advice, a friendly point in the right direction or even that all important contact that may lead to securing a position once you have graduated.
The city is also a fantastic place for young people to live, with so many people interning each seasonal term; a large number of the hill population is under the age of 26, so it is a great place to meet people from all over the world with the same ambitions and drive for life as you!

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About careersbham

Student Engagement Officer for Careers Network University of Birmingham

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