College of Humanities & Social Sciences

Internship Profiles

Skyla Sorensen

Internship:  U.S. Department of State, Rome, Italy

To briefly summarize what I’m’s a State Department Internship for the United States Mission to the United Nations in the Public Affairs Office. 

The USUN manages the US relationship to Rome Based Agencies like the World Food Programme (WFP), the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO), and the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD). 

The Public Affairs office works with all the agencies, doing everything from coordinating press and media to planning events designed to promote US policy and agendas. 

Interns are responsible for managing social media, putting out daily news briefs, covering events, and pretty much anything else the office needs help with. Because the USUN is part of the Tri-Mission in Rome (it’s on the same campus as the US Embassy to the Vatican and to Italy), I also get to help out with the Vatican Embassy’s public affairs. 

 In short—it’s the coolest unpaid internship in the universe!


Catherine Gelband

Internship:  Whatcom County Public Defender

Interning at the Whatcom County Public Defender complimented, enriched, and extended my studies in Political Science. My internship and Western courses continuously informed one another. This simultaneous application of classroom knowledge and community-based experience created a holistic, symbiotic approach to my education in Political Science.


Having a specific interest in law, interning at the Public Defender gave me a sense of legal procedures and allocation of responsibility in real time. Interns are given the chance to complete investigative work directly with clients, witnesses, and others involved in cases and often follow a case from start to finish. The best part of the internship was the caliber of projects entrusted to interns and the accessibility and proximity to the work of the investigators and attorneys. It truly paints a picture of work in the field of criminal law.


Students considering an internship at the Public Defender should look forward to fast-paced, hands on work under the supervision of engaged, helpful, and informative staff. There is no formal initial training, rather, interns are trained with each new task. My best advice is to ask any and all questions early and often.