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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at UC Riverside chapter.

For the past 12 weeks, I had held my very first internship with the Borgen Project. I first applied back in July for an internship with them. They didn’t respond for about two months, and by that point, I had totally forgotten about them, but also believed that they had moved on with other candidates. When they finally emailed me back, I was beyond excited because it was the first internship offer I had ever received. I finally began working with them the first week of November and was very nervous at first. Due to COVID-19, the entire internship was remote. This meant that I would most likely always be working on my own from home. Here are some of the things my internship taught me.

Congressional leaders pay attention to what you want

Before this internship, I thought congressional leaders only paid attention to things that were presented to them in meetings or such. Yet I found out that they actually pay attention to what constituents want. For example, if one sends them emails, they will respond (eventually). Additionally, I was able to write to them through letters, and although I didn’t get one in return, there are constituents who do.


Learning to prioritize 

Before my internship, I only had school and work so it was easy to figure out when to do what. With my internship, it was a little more difficult to figure out when to do what because I would overthink and just stress myself. I then started writing down what I needed to do and prioritize whatever was due first or required more time.

Learning to communicate effectively  (through email)

This was something that I had to figure out fairly quickly since I was only communicating with my managers through email. It was necessary for me to email them at the beginning of the week whenever I had a question since they were also dealing with other interns. One bonus about how I communicated with my manager is that I could pretty much email them at whatever time of the day and it wouldn’t be an issue. The reason this was okay is that my managers were in other states, so we had different time zones.

What I want to continue working with

This internship has allowed me to actually think about what I want to continue doing with my life and the type of professional I want to be apart from. It made me realize how much I enjoyed working with non-profit organizations and how one day I might want to start my own or just work with another similar organization.

So this is what I was able to learn through the past three months with the Borgen Project, and hopefully, I learned more important skills while working as their Regional Director.

Ashleen Herrarte

UC Riverside '22

Ashleen was a UCR Political Science and Philosophy major. She graduated from UCR back in Spring 2022. When she was not writing articles for HCUCR, she was usually spending time with friends by going out to eat yummy foods or watching shows at home. She hopes you enjoyed reading her articles!
Deedee Plata

UC Riverside '22

20 year old creative writing major with a love for skincare, representation, and art. When not laying down and watching cartoons, I can be found working on my novel or browsing through baby name forums.