BPS Student Profiles

Meet the students and alumni who have participated in the Bowdoin Public Service Initiative as members of the BPS in Washington cohort, BPS Fellows, and BPS Maine Government Fellows.
Arein Nguyen '21
Arein Nguyen '21

Arein Nguyen '21 - BPS in Washington 2019, BPS Fellow 2020

Arein was a 2020 BPS Fellow and a member of the 2019 Bowdoin Public Service in Washington cohort. For his fellowship, Arein worked as a remote intern with the American Bar Association-Commission on Immigration’s Legal Orientation Program Hotline, which is located in Washington, D.C. As an intern, his main responsibility was to attend to LOP hotline which takes calls from all of the detention centers (over 200) across the United States. During these calls, he listens and talks to detainees to learn and inquire about their specific situations and administer casework to answer their questions or resolve their issues. Aside from the hotline, he works on special projects like document translation and outreach work in order to find and verify good, reliable resources to recommend to our clients. Since there is a very strong focus on immigration law and, in some cases, criminal law, Arein recommends this internship to anyone interested in one of those two fields as a profession. Additionally, anyone interested in social work, human rights, non-profit work and overall legal work would benefit greatly from this internship. The staff members are very passionate about what they do and are very willing to talk more about your future career interests that fall under these fields and topics.

Adriana Nazarko '21
Adriana Nazarko '21

Adriana Nazarko '21 - BPS in Washington 2019, BPS Fellow 2020

Adriana works for the Nuclear Threat Initiative (NTI) as an intern with the Fuel Cycle and Verification program. Though NTI is located in Washington, DC, the organization supported its interns by offering an opportunity to work with the organization remotely in light of COVID-19. As an intern, Adriana is able to work on reports pertaining to advanced nuclear reactors, the development of nuclear energy programs throughout the world, and issues of nonproliferation related to the DPRK. She would recommend this internship to anyone who is interested in a career in the nuclear policy field, and would like to also note that NTI offers a wide range of paid internships, including positions in technical affairs and biosecurity. Adriana would like to encourage any students interested in public service to stay open to opportunities and to not be afraid to respectfully reach out to individuals or organizations that they might want to work with in the future to meet people and create connections.

Sarah Corkum '21
Sarah Corkum '21

Sarah Corkum '21 - BPS Fellow 2020

Sarah was a 2020 BPS Fellow, where she interned for the Maine Climate Council in Augusta, ME. The Maine Climate Council is part of the Governor’s Office of Policy Innovation and the Future. The Council has been working over the summer to compile working group recommendations into a Climate Action Plan to present to the governor. As an intern, Sarah worked on a public engagement plan to ensure that a wide range of voices were implemented into the plan. She also conducted interviews with working group members as part of the public engagement. By attending internal meetings, she was able to get a first-hand look into the creation of environmental policy. She would recommend this internship to anyone interested in public policy because it shows the policy process at every stage of development. She encourages other Bowdoin students to not be afraid of reaching out to people about available positions for jobs they want to pursue.

Milo Richards '21
Milo Richards '21

Milo Richards '21 - BPS in Washington 2019, BPS Fellow 2020

Milo Richards ’21 was a 2020 Bowdoin Public Service Fellow and a member of the 2019 Bowdoin Public Service in Washington cohort. As a Fellow, he served as an intern for the U.S. Department of State in the Bureau of Legislative affairs. The Bureau is responsible for coordinating legislative activity for the Department and facilitating briefings, correspondence and nominations with Congress. Milo spent most of his time tracking and compiling legislation and congressional statements that concerned Bureau priorities. Additionally, Milo drafted issue papers and legislative strategy proposals focusing on European/Eurasian affairs and Consular Affairs. Milo would recommend an internship at State for anyone interested in foreign affairs or obtaining a different perspective of the Hill.

Noelia Calcano ’21
Noelia Calcano ’21

Noelia Calcano ’21 - BPS in Washington 2019, BPS Fellow 2020

Noelia Calcano ’21 was a BPS in Washington Fellow in the spring of 2019 and she interned at Congressman Golden’s District Office. Congressman Jared Golden is a veteran serving as the U.S. Representative for Maine's 2nd congressional district since 2019. As a congressional intern, she managed constituent casework in the district to ensure that Representative Golden’s office put Maine’s 2nd District constituents first and prioritized responsiveness and accessibility. She represented Congressman Golden at events and worked directly with Maine 2nd District constituents. Her district casework included immigration, social security, Medicaid and veteran’s affairs. Additionally, Noelia organized a New Mainer Business Roundtable which served as an opportunity for Congressman Golden to address the needs of immigrant business owners in the county. She recommends this internship for those interested in getting exposure to all of the facets of our district office work and gaining insight into the legislative process. She suggests to prospective and future fellows "Network! The BPS in Washington fellowship does not include an internship but I was encouraged to apply for this opportunity by one of the speakers we met."

Mackey O'Keefe '21
Mackey O'Keefe '21

Mackey O'Keefe '21 - BPS in Washington 2019, BPS Fellow 2020

Mackey O'Keefe was a 2020 BPS Fellow and a member of the 2019 BPS in Washington cohort. As a Fellow, Mackey is working remotely at the Department of Justice in the Consumer Protection Branch in Washington, DC. Here, he worked directly with DOJ attorneys on a number of cases concerning international complex consumer fraud, domestic corporate malfeasance, and tobacco and opioid issues, as well as government defence. Projects varied from archiving evidence and identity investigations, to research into legislative history and memo writing for meetings between Department officials. One particularly valuable aspect of the internship was the frequent presentations and calls with attorneys, and their willingness to share career and legal insight. Interning at the DOJ is an outstanding opportunity for anyone who thinks they might be interested in a future in the legal world and looking for wide exposure to the many opportunities such a career can provide.

Caroline Hastings '21
Caroline Hastings '21

Caroline Hastings '21 - BPS Fellow 2020

Caroline was a 2020 BPS fellow and worked for the Betsy Sweet for the U.S. Senate campaign. As a Policy Intern, she drafted policy papers, worked on debate preparation, researched how progressive policies would affect Mainers, and wrote website content. She was able to work on policy solutions to the issues she cares about--criminal justice, education, and school discipline reform. She recommends interning with a campaign to those who like fast-paced work environments and want to learn the policy solutions for an issue they are passionate about. Working on a campaign allowed her to dive deeper into ways to enact change on issues she wants to pursue, while also doing in-depth research on policy that she'd never thought about.

Theo Gardner-Puschak in front of the U.S. Capitol Building
Theo Gardner-Puschak '20 in front of the U.S. Capitol Building

Theo Gardner-Puschak '20 - BPS in Washington 2018, BPS Fellow 2019

Theo Gardner-Puschak was a 2019 Bowdoin Public Service fellow. He worked as a legislative intern for Representative Jared Golden (D-ME), in his Washington, D.C. office. Theo spent much of his time researching and writing memos on policy matters and proposed legislation for the legislative team, with an emphasis on healthcare and defense. He drafted correspondence on the Congressman’s behalf on a variety of topics, and interacted frequently with constituents, serving “on the front lines of democracy.” He recommends an internship on the Hill to anyone interested in a career in policy or government. Theo was set on interning in Congress, and is glad that he was fortunate enough to be able to—"every day in Congress presents a new challenge, and students who are already fixated on the political news cycle will find it fascinating and inspiring. Searching for an internship in D.C. can be a brutal process, though, but Bowdoin students should never count themselves out.”

Olivia Giles '20 at the Center for the National Interest
Olivia Giles '20 at the Center for the National Interest

Olivia Giles '20 - BPS in Washington 2018, BPS Fellow 2019

Olivia was a 2019 BPS fellow and she worked at the Center for the National Interest which is a non-partisan think tank that focuses on the realist perspective in US foreign policy. As an intern she was assigned to the Middle East program, where she worked under my supervisor, Hamad Al Ibrahim, assisting him with his research on complexity theory in the Middle East. She also was able to write three articles of my own on other issues in the Middle East which were published in The National Interest, which is the magazine associated with the think tank. Olivia recommends this internship for someone who wants to do a lot of in-depth research on a particular topic.

Headshot of Izzy Gray
Izzy Gray '20

Isabella Gray ’20 - BPS Fellow 2019

Isabella Gray ’20, a 2019 BPS fellow, interned at the Environmental Protection Agency’s Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) Division in Washington, DC. The TRI program collects data on chemical releases and pollution prevention activities from industrial and federal facilities across the country. The agency releases this information to the public in order to support informed decision-making and promote environmental and public health. As an undergraduate intern for TRI’s Communications and Outreach Branch, she spent most of the summer helping develop a new project called TRI in the Classroom which aims to encourage educators to use TRI data in their teaching and academic research. She would recommend this internship to anyone interested in environmental policy, environmental justice, or science communication. She strongly encourages interested applicants to look into the EPA’s Pathways Program, an agency-wide internship program that offers opportunities to EPA interns to tour other offices and agencies and meet with distinguished leaders across the government. She also considered positions on Capitol Hill and in other EPA offices. 
Sabrina and a few of her coworkers on an office trip to the Newseum.
Sabrina Hunte '20 and a few of her coworkers on an office trip to the Newseum.

Sabrina Hunte '20 - BPS Fellow 2019

BPS Fellow Sabrina Hunte '20, interned with the North American Association for Environment Education as a Policy and International Relations Intern. NAAEE is a Washington D.C. based that has branches in all 50 states, Mexico and Canada dedicated to furthering environmental education efforts in North America for people of all ages. At NAAEE, Sabrina was tasked with independently researching and completing environmental education profiles on Caribbean countries for the Global Environmental Education Programme in conjunction with the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Taiwan Environmental Protection Administration. She also compiled a database of national and regional environmental, educational and affinity oriented organizations in addition and participated in roundtable discussions focusing on equity & inclusion in hopes of diversifying the environmental field and addressing inequities within the organization.  She would recommend this internship to those interested in exploring the connection between environmental studies and government. Sabrina was slated to work for the Department of State's Office of the Global AIDS Department but had a change of plans when her security clearance was delayed due to factors beyond her control.

Abigail Silsby at the U.S. Department of Justice
Abigail Silsby '20 at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.

Abigail Silsby '20 - BPS in Washington 2018, BPS Fellow 2019, BPS in Washington senior leader 2020

Abigail Silsby ’20 was a BPS fellow in the summer of 2019 and she interned at the Department of Justice's Consumer Protection Branch in Washington, D.C. The Consumer Protection Branch leads the Department of Justice’s efforts to enforce laws that protect Americans’ health, safety, economic security, and identity integrity. As an undergraduate intern, she worked on substantive projects for active pre-trial cases including mail fraud, elder care fraud, and medical device fraud cases as well as cases involving lottery and telemarketing scams, odometer fraud, and opioid abuse, even a major military case of identity theft. She recommends this internship for anyone interested in attending law school. She suggests to prospective and future fellows "to stay persistent in their internship search process as it can take longer than you might expect."

Riena Harker headshot
Riena Harker '20

Riena Harker '20 - BPS Fellow 2019

Riena was a summer 2019 BPS Fellow who interned with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Air Policy & Program Support (OAPPS). OAPPS is one of three administrative offices for EPA’s Office of Air & Radiation, which is responsible for controlling air pollution and radiation exposure. During her time with EPA, Riena completed research projects on ethylene oxide, PFAS, and wildfires; evaluated environmental justice software for permitting use; assisted in Congressional hearing preparation; and took notes at meetings and Congressional hearings for her supervisors. Riena advises future environmental BPS fellows to network with alumni working in the environmental policy field before applying to internships, rather than blindly applying to every organization possible as she did.

Photo of Katherine Henneberger ’20
Katherine Henneberger ’20

Katherine Henneberger ’20 - BPS in Washington 2018

Katherine Henneberger ’20 was a participant in BPS in Washington in 2018. During the summer of 2019 she worked as a research intern for the Voting Rights Data Institute, a program hosted by the Metric Geometry and Gerrymandering Group in Boston. Her work focused on analyzing the partisan effects of gerrymandering, using Markov Chain algorithms to create models of redistricting plans based on census data and GIS shapefiles. One of her projects evaluated the potential impact of adding a citizenship question to the decennial census. Katherine recommends this institute to mathematicians and coders passionate about voting rights.

Ryan Telingator ’21

Ryan Telingator ’21

Ryan Telingator ’21 - BPS in Washington 2019

Ryan Telingator ’21 was a member of the BPS in Washington program during the spring of 2019. Over the summer of 2019, he interned at the PEAR Institute, a research institute at McLean Hospital in Belmont, Massachusetts. The PEAR institute is devoted to facilitating healthy youth development through social-emotional learning (SEL) – specifically using examinations and the ensuing data to inform curricular choices and support for students. As an intern through the student visitor program and McLean, Ryan worked on revising an SEL curriculum for a 14 session program to help develop assertiveness and autonomy in middle school boys. Over the course of the summer, he formatted, rewrote, and developed new curricula; created logic models and conducted literature reviews; and facilitated many activities. Ryan would highly recommend this internship for anyone interested in education or psychology, as it provides an interesting insight into various educational innovations and reforms that are underway. Ryan suggests applying to as many internships as is feasible, as it is immensely valuable to learn how to sell yourself, interview, and network both for future summers and in possibly searching for a career after college.