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Students complete top political internships


John Kerry photo

U.S. Senator John Kerry (D-Massachusetts) with Emerson student interns Tom McDonald '13, Kate Lagreca '14 and Carlee Griffith '13.

Political Communication majors Kate Lagreca ’14 and Xakota Espinoza ’14 have spent the fall semester participating in some of the most high-profile political internships in the country.

Espinoza, who is a Psychology minor, worked for U.S. Senator John Kerry (D-Massachusetts) in his Boston office, while Lagreca, a former Kerry intern and Journalism minor, interned with the U.S. Department of the Interior in Washington, D.C.

For Espinoza, the level of involvement interns were allowed came as a surprise, and she spent much of her time working on matters pertaining to veterans’ affairs, Social Security, and Internal Revenue Service issues.

“I really enjoyed working directly with constituents,” she said.

Espinoza said the highlight of her internship was participating in the press conference in which Kerry endorsed Democrat Elizabeth Warren for Massachusetts’ other U.S. Senate seat. For Espinoza, the internship was a realization of a childhood dream.

“I consider myself tremendously lucky,” she said, “not only to have had such an amazing opportunity, but also to work for a politician who I have admired since I first went to his presidential campaign rally in Madison, Wisconsin, when I was 12 years old.”

Lagreca was a Kerry intern in Boston in the fall 2011 and spring 2012 semesters before accepting an internship with the Department of the Interior this fall. She said she is going to intern for Kerry again in the spring 2013 semester.

“My internship with Senator Kerry and my internship with the Department of the Interior were completely different—and that’s what I wanted,” Lagreca said. “I wanted to experiment with the federal government and figure out what realm of politics was a good fit for me.”

Espinoza would like to participate in Emerson’s Washington, D.C., program her senior year, and she aspires to become a chief of staff or director of communications for a government official after college.

The students say they received guidance and support from Visual and Media Arts Professor Thomas Cooper, Journalism Assistant Professor Michael Brown, Communication Studies part-time faculty member Alexis Fox,and Communication Studies Scholar-in-Residence Spencer Kimball.

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