Sunday, June 10, 2012

Into the Hailstorm

Hey everybody, it’s Paul again. I titled this week’s blog “Into the Hailstorm” because that’s the best way I can think of to describe Capitol Hill; a hailstorm. There is constantly someone new to meet, a new task to complete, and a new challenge to beat; and I love it.

I began work this week with the office of Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, and have spent the week learning my way around the capitol and helping complete tasks in the office. I have been helping to input correspondence into our Iconstituent computer system and generating tour schedules for families planning to visit our nation’s capitol. I got my staff ID badge this week, which allows me to go certain places in the capitol, as well as allowing me to access the subterranean tunnel system that connects the House office buildings to the capitol. I have also gotten to take important documents from our office to a room called the “cloak room” at the capitol, which is really cool. I take a document to a hallway that is closed to anyone without a staff badge, and approach a doorway. At the door I ring a doorbell and wait for someone to answer. Once someone comes to the door, I hand them the document. They ensure that the document is authentic and that I am allowed to handle it, and then disappear. The process is simple, but I feel incredibly important doing it, and everything feels very secretive. I also got to visit the office of the Attending Physician of Congress, which required me going to another restricted part of the capitol. I have met a lot of great people, and can’t wait to get back to work.

On Tuesday, I attended a reception for AAPD and got to network with more wonderful professionals. I met a woman named Merrill Friedman, who is the Vice President of Advocacy for Amerigroup. She is incredible, and I am looking forward to getting to speak with her again. I also got another chance to talk with Joyce Bender and Mary Brougher, which was great. I am so blessed to have the opportunities afforded me by the AAPD Internship Program, and realize more every day just how lucky I am to have been chosen.

This coming week I will be meeting with Mrs. Friedman at the NCIL Conference, and she plans to introduce me to some of her lobbying contacts. I’m in shock at how many doors continue to open for me, all thanks to AAPD. I can’t wait for this week, and am sure that next week’s blog will have more great stories of my time at the capitol. 

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