Notes from the Field: Ben Goodman '18

Ben Goodman '18 interned in the Washington, D.C. office of Senator Sherrod Brown for the Summer 2017 term. The following is an excerpt from his internship report.

This summer, I worked in the Washington, D.C. office of Senator Sherrod Brown as a legislative intern. Senator Brown represents the state of Ohio in the U.S. Senate and provides crucial services to Ohioans while advocating for their legislative interests in Congress. My responsibilities as a legislative intern were wide-ranging, spanning from administrative work to legislative research. I assisted in sorting and organizing the daily correspondence that the Senator received and answered phone calls from constituents who had questions and comments. I performed important services for constituents, such as leading several tours of the Capitol for constituents that were visiting Washington and connecting Ohioans in need of assistance with government agencies to the appropriate caseworkers. I attended several committee hearings and policy briefings and briefed relevant staffers on the information presented. I also assisted Senator Brown’s legislative correspondents in composing letters sent in response to constituents that wrote in to the Senator regarding various policy issues. Additionally, I researched and wrote a detailed memo regarding the Hart-Celler Immigration Act of 1965 that was presented directly to Senator Brown.

I learned several important skills during my experience that I plan to utilize in my future academic and professional endeavors; I have developed my writing abilities and am now much more comfortable and proficient in writing concise memos that present information accurately and effectively. I have also learned how to conduct myself professionally in a formal work environment and converse with discourteous constituents in a polite manner. These skills will serve me well in my plans to work on political campaigns after I graduate, as interacting with voters and presenting information, both verbally and written, in a clear manner are crucial assets for a political staffer. This enriching experience would not have been possible without the grant I received from the Rockefeller Center.