Samuel Frances-Barrot participated in an intership this summer through The Washington Center.
by Danielle BurkhartLock Haven University is a member of the Pennsylvania State
System of Higher Education (PASSHE), the largest provider of higher education in
the commonwealth. Its 14 universities offer more than 250 degree and certificate
programs in more than 120 areas of study. Nearly 405,000 system alumni live and
work in Pennsylvania.
Burkhart is an LHU communications media major and a student worker in the Career Services office.
LOCK HAVEN, Pa. - The Washington Center is a nonprofit organization that provides students, from hundreds of colleges and universities throughout the world, the opportunity to be challenged, to learn and to intern in Washington, D.C.
Many of The Washington Center’s alumni now successfully work in leadership positions in the public, private and nonprofit sectors in the United States and abroad.
Dr. Stan Berard has been the liaison for The Washington Center at Lock Haven University since 2004. “The program is great for networking and making solid connections,” said Dr. Berard. He advises students of all majors to apply for The Washington Center’s internships since every major has a policy that applies to it.
Dr. Berard handles the application process that takes place on campus. Most of the process is now completed online, but students need to be prepared for all of the requirements of the program including, providing a writing sample, having a professional resume, and the interview process that takes place following acceptance.
“Because of retirement, it is possible for the internship to become a job possibility,” said Dr. Berard. This is a huge incentive for students to jump on these internship opportunities.
“Our students do well,” said Dr. Berard. “I tell my students, ‘you can do this’ because they can.” The Washington Center internship program is a chance for the student to apply what they know.
Lock Haven University has had many students participate in The Washington Center in recent years. Two Lock Haven interns from this past summer are junior Samuel Frances-Barrot and senior Dina Uzhegova.
Samuel Frances-Barrot is a business and administration major at Lock Haven University with a concentration in economics and finance.
Frances-Barrot worked as a Records Management Intern with the Minority Business Agency in the Department of Commerce. This particular agency aims to enhance the growth of minority businesses and help minority business owners.
As an intern, Frances-Barrot’s responsibilities were to complete a physical audit on a library, check that the business requirements are being followed, and many other records management tasks.
“The internship was rigorous, and I was relieved when it was over. But, it was an enjoyable experience that is not comparable to any other,” said Frances-Barrot.
Frances-Barrot’s goals are to become a CFO and own his own business. The Washington Center helped him to think of ideas to start his own business, and showed him the possibilities that are out there.
Supervisor Michael Stallings took Frances-Barrot under his wing throughout his internship. He could really relate to Stallings since they have similar goals in business and finance.
Frances-Barrot emphasized the importance of networking and the many networking opportunities that The Washington Center provides. He had the opportunity to meet the Assistant Attorney General of Washington D.C. and also the Vice President of Clark Construction.
Another intern who represented Lock Haven University at The Washington Center this past summer was Dina Uzhegova. Uzhegova was placed with the Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition. The agency helps survivors that come from other countries and helps them to find pro-bono lawyers, money, housing, and other services.
Uzhegova’s responsibilities were organizing information when survivors came to the center, researching foundations for grants, and writing proposal letters.
Uzhegova expressed her appreciation for the people that she had the opportunity to work with. Sister Alice, one of Uzhegova’s fellow employees, was very helpful to her and was understanding of the fact that interns come to learn.
“Communicating with all these people was memorable; they all have something to tell, and they all have their own histories,” said Uzhegova.
As an international student, she originally wanted to work in an embassy, but her time with The Washington Center broadened her experience.
All majors are welcome to apply. Through the years, LHU students from criminal justice, communications media, social work, political science, business, and the international studies programs have interned at agencies through The Washington Center. Some of the internship sites obtained through The Washington Center include Law Media Group, U.S. Department of Commerce, American-Turkish Council, the Department of Justice – Office of International Affairs, National Republican Senatorial Committee, Children’s Rights Council, State of Maryland – Department of Corrections, U.S. Department of Defense – Air Force Litigation Division, and Entertainment Industries Council.
More information on The Washington Center and the opportunities that they provide to Lock Haven University students can be found at the Career Services Office located in Akeley 114 or at The Washington Center’s website: http://www.twc.edu/.
“What students get out of their experience with The Washington Center is the experience of Washington and working in Washington.” - Dr. Stan Berard.