Name: Clarence Snuggs
Internship, Co-op, or Research Site: Maryland General Assembly Internship Program
Position Title: Legislative Aide
Major or Program: Political Science
Current Class Level: Junior
Work Term: Spring 2022
Tell us about your internship, co-op, or research opportunity, including your day-to-day responsibilities.
I work in the office of Maryland House Delegate Pamela Queen (Montgomery County, District 14), where I draft responses to her constituents' questions, draft letters requesting support and testimony for her bills, and create plans for her weekly social media outreach. I also perform research for each bill I write support letters for to help show what the issues are and how her bills will help solve them. So far I have helped answer several residents' questions about the state government, and successfully gained support for the Delegate's bills and other initiatives from the state's citizen groups, and social media followers.
Describe the process of obtaining your position. When did you hear of the position and submit your application?
After interning for a handful of social service and civil rights organizations, I developed a strong interest in helping legislators craft public policy. In September of my Fall 2021 semester, I talked about this with Dr. Laura Antkowiak, Director of my honors program the Sondheim Public Affairs Scholars Program, who recommended that I apply for the MGA Internship Program. During the application process, I got my resume reviewed by the Career Center, and got my personal essay reviewed by the Writing Center, both of which were impressed by my background in public service and helped me show it to the review board. After submitting it in late October, I was contacted for a number of interviews with state House Delegates, to discuss legislative aide positions. During my last Delegate Queen, from my home of Montgomery County, I expressed my knowledge of, and desire to be a part of the legislative process in Maryland. She offered me a position, which I was glad to accept.
What have you enjoyed the most about your position or organization?
"I have most enjoyed drafting letters to Delegate Queen's constituents and community organizations across the state, because I know that I am playing an active role in helping them understand our state government better, and solving their challenges through getting their support for her initiatives.
Every constituent I've helped respond to has asked good questions about how the state government can help them learn more about the policy issues they're interested in, and whether the Delegate can support some of them through her bills or those of other legislators. I know that each question answered and every challenge the Delegate's office supports brings residents one step closer to overcoming their challenges and getting the most out of living in Maryland. I feel the same way about letters requesting support for her bills, in that from what I understand from reading and researching the issues they address, they will do real good for the residents who they're aimed at supporting, and encouraging community organizations who are working on them to support her efforts makes me proud to be part of the legislative process, and part of the solutions."
How do you believe you have made an impact through your work?
"I believe I have made a positive impact on the lives of fellow Maryland residents through my work, by helping to get them the information, and state support they need to get their needs addressed. Legislative representatives are here to represent the interests of their constituents, through developing new policies which address the challenges they are facing. Every constituent I have helped respond to, and every community organization I have convinced to support the Delegate's bills have
provided them support when they've needed it, and encouraged them to be agents of change for the issues they want to see improvement in. "
What advice would you give to another student who is seeking an internship or similar experience?
Look for job fields which align with your interests, and apply for positions which will let you use your skills and experience to do the job in the best way possible. Internship coordinators are eager to take on students who are interested in learning about the type of work they do, and will be glad to sit down and talk with you about opportunities with them if you show them how you can be a valuable addition to their team.
Please provide a short reflection or quote about what you liked most about your position / earning internship credit / working with the Career Center.
Look for ways to make a positive difference for the people you're serving, in every task you have in your internship.
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