Students celebrate Washington D.C. experiences

Christina Stafford

WASHINGTON D.C. – Twenty-four students, who spent the semester living in Washington, D.C. and interned in places such as ABC News, the Center for American Progress and Congressional offices on Capitol Hill, were recognized yesterday for completing the 35th annual Washington Program in National Issues internship program.

Members of Congress and their staff members, internship supervisors, Kent State alums, prospective WPNI students, families of current students and guests from Kent State came to the Rayburn House Office Building on Capitol Hill to congratulate the students for finishing the program.

“The closing ceremony is a way to recognize the efforts and contributions the students have made through the semester, not only in their classes, but also their internships,” Program Assistant Kathleen Loughry said.

During the ceremony, Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan offered congratulations to the current students and wished them good luck.

Jerry Feezel, interim dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, also attended the ceremony to honor the students.

“This is my first opportunity to celebrate with them (WPNI students) the closing ceremony of the program,” Feezel said. “I want to invoke some voices from the past. I want these voices to set stage for our 24 future leaders.”

In addition, Program Director Richard Robyn told the audience this semester’s students did not face as many obstacles as they have in the past. This year, the biggest challenge was April being the coldest it has been in Washington since 1875.

WPNI participant Jessica Joseph, political science major, said WPNI is a very valuable experience.

“I learned how to practically apply my theoretical major,” she said. “You’re dropped into a real working environment. You have to take all the knowledge you learn and apply it to the real world. You take it and be successful.”

Contact College of Arts & Sciences reporter Christina Stafford at [email protected].