DC Summer Interns Get Trained

June 30, 2014 | By Ali Kudlick

Last week 84 conservative DC summer interns gathered at the Leadership Institute to learn the secrets for a successful internship.

Experts on everything from networking and résumé writing to dressing for success addressed interns and provided tricks of the trade and personal experiences.

Steve Sutton, vice president of Development at the Leadership Institute, began the training by advising interns to develop the “Four P’s of Excellence: philosophical, political, professional and personal.”

Knowing what you believe in is good, but it isn’t sufficient. “You owe it to your philosophy to know how to win,” said Steve, famously quoting Morton Blackwell, LI’s president.  The rest of the day was dedicated to learning how to win through professional and personal excellence.

Vice President for Strategic Communication at Wise Public Affairs Laura Rigas posed the question, “What does success look like?” She gave practical advice on knowing your leadership style, developing personal mission statements and defining your personal brand.  She emphasized self-awareness in combination with specific measurable goals.

“I feel equipped and better prepared to excel in Washington this summer and in the future,” said Austin Pendergist, intern in the office of Congressman Mark Sanford (R – SC).

Interns from across the city had the chance to not only listen, but also to ask questions of the speakers as well as a panel of recruiters who work for political organizations around town.   

“Opportunities fall into your lap sometimes and you have to be ready for them,” said Lauren Wills, scheduler and intern coordinator for Congressman Thomas Massie (R – KY).

“LI’s Conservative Intern Workshop was a practical how-to guide for every conservative intern in Washington,” said Elizabeth Green, who is interning at the Franklin Center for Government and Public Integrity.