Aveista Helmandi 2

Aveista Helmandi

Major: Political Science

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 Tell us about your internship – what kind of work did you do? What did you find rewarding?

Working for Congressman Larsen consisted of drafting memos for bills, attending hearings and drafting memo ideas, researching current issues, inputting inquiries for constituents into our database, writing letters to constituents, helping with appropriations votes, giving tours to constituents, attending events, and much more.

Have your career or life goals changed as a result of your internship? If so, how? 

My life long goals have always been to pursue law school. However, because of this internship, I intend on having an emphasis of environmental law to help mitigate the consequences of climate change.

Share an exciting memory from your internship – something unexpected, an accomplishment, someone you met. 

Representative Larsen allowed for me to request a co-sponsorship recommendation, the – Displaced Afghan Women and Girls Education Act (H.R.7709) which authorizes the Department of Education to create a program to provide college scholarships and educational support to refugee Afghan women and girls. After submitting an informational recommendation memo to the Congressman, Representative Larsen approved of my request. He is now the first Washington Representative to be a cosponsor of the bill. Representative Larsen not only has been an ally to me as a Student, but as a Afghan American woman, daughter of refugees. Him cosponsoring the bill is proof of that.

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Did your internship lead to any opportunities?

Yes my internship allowed for me to attend many congressional events and go to special events.

Share a story about something special you did in Washington – an event you attended, a place you went, an exciting talk, etc. 

A special moment for me while being in Washington was working at the Hill of course but getting the opportunity to meet the Prime Minister of New Zealand, Jacinda Arden.

Do you have any advice for future UCDC students?

Yes, truly take in every day you have in D.C. As soon as it’s over you will miss every moment you had there. Make sure to network with everyone and stay in touch with your quarters cohort.

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