Hi! I’m Alexandra White, a senior strategic communication student, writing to you from the Utah State Capitol. This semester, I am the Government Relations intern for Southern Utah University and I’m excited to share my journey with you as I learn the ins and outs of being a young professional.
One of my favorite things to do as I enter into a new job is set goals for myself to make sure I learn and grow from the experience. My goals for this internship are to learn to work as a professional, build my personal portfolio, and represent SUU well. Since this also qualifies as my EDGE project, I hope to make it meaningful by being open to change and improvement on my part.
Although this week is my first official week working, I have a feeling that this is going to be such an amazing and life-changing experience. I will be working directly with SUU’s Executive Director for Development and Government Relations Donna Law, who serves as a lobbyist for SUU and Utah higher education. As Donna’s intern, my job duties include everything I love doing like writing, event planning, growing and maintaining relationships, managing social media accounts, and representing the best school in Utah.
Up to this point, all of the work I have done is to prepare me for a successful internship. Earlier this month, I spent a week with 90 other interns learning about politics in Utah and how to be a successful intern. These interns are students from all of the four-year universities in the state and of course, SUU. In addition to myself, SUU is privileged enough to sponsor eight other interns who will all be working alongside Utah legislators. It’s been a joy to get to know these fellow T-Birds and see the love and passion they have for their work.
Last week, I was able to attend meetings with Donna and several legislators who sit on the committees we will watch during the legislative session. Our goal during these type of meetings is to inform the legislators about what SUU is doing now and where we see a need for improvement. In turn, this allows the legislators to make informed decisions on what they will vote for when it comes time to look at policy and budget requests. I didn’t know what to expect when I entered into these meetings, but it turns out, every meeting is different. They range from all business to teary-eyed discussions about the legislator's personal lives. It was an enjoyable experience to be part of.
I look forward to the adventures that I will experience during my internship and I will present you with a weekly update on what happens during my time on the hill.Learn more about interning with the Michael O. Leavitt Center for Politics and Public Service.