Students win prestigious summer internships

Posted May 19, 2011

This summer, Abilene Christian University political science majors are going places—specifically, state capitals, the nation's capital, and a well-known international city to serve in prestigious internships and valuable learning experiences.

Dr. Neal Coates, chair of the Department of Political Science at ACU, has announced a list of students and places they will be interning during Summer 2011.

"Many of our students do internships during college," Coates says. "Beyond regular opportunities in state and local government, at places such as the Abilene city attorney's office or in congressional regional offices, this summer several students are involved in particularly outstanding internships."

Matthew Ray, senior from The Woodlands, Texas, will work this summer in Washington, D.C., in the office of Senator John Cornyn. Keri Gray, senior from Longview, Texas, won a select internship in the office of Nancy Pelosi, minority leader of the House of Representatives. Brad Schultz, senior from Franklin, Tenn., will serve half the summer in Senator Bob Corker's Nashville office, then move to Senator Lamar Alexander's Washington, D.C. office. Ashley Close, junior from Lexington, South Carolina, is working in the office of South Carolina governor Nikki Haley.

Laura Smith, a 2009 ACU political science graduate and a second-year law student at the University of Virginia, will clerk with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague, the Netherlands. She will assist a judge with appellate review duties, performing research and writing.

Brittany Partridge, junior from Annandale, Minn., will study in Washington, D.C. at The Fund for American Studies Program based at Georgetown University, and was also admitted into the Engalitcheff Institute on Comparative Political and Economic Systems. Partridge was recently featured in the Abilene Reporter-News for starting the Red Thread Movement against human trafficking, and just returned from Nepal, where that program's efforts are centered.

The Department of Political Science houses the Jack Pope Fellows Program, named for the former Texas Supreme Court Chief Justice and an ACU alumnus, for ACU students preparing for public service after graduation. The department also offers the B.A. with a concentration in international relations and comparative politics, providing a focused study of world politics. Graduates have gone on to excellent graduate programs, law schools and government service. One 2011 graduate, Melanie Wheeler of Abilene, will attend the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, one of the most prestigious institutions preparing persons for diplomatic service.

Learn more about ACU's Department of Political Science here.