“This highly regarded internship program is intended to provide American Indians and Alaska Natives with an insider’s view of the federal government,” states a press release. “The internship is located in Washington, D.C., and is known for placing students in extremely competitive internship positions in Senate and House offices, committees, Cabinet departments, and the White House, where they are able to observe government decision-making processes firsthand.”
Awards go to American Indian and Alaska Native students who have demonstrated an interest in tribal public policy, such as criminal justice, cultural preservation and revitalization, education, economic development, health, law, natural resources protection, and tribal governance.
Since the program’s inception in 1996 and including this year’s group of 12, a total of 198 American Indian and Alaska Native students from 104 tribes will have participated in the program.
This year’s class includes:
- Adeline Aranaydo, Tohono O’odham Nation, interning in the office of U.S. House Representative Raúl M. Grijalva;
- Bree Blackhorse, Seminole Nation of Oklahoma, interning with the U.S. Department of Justice in the Office of Tribal Justice;
- Mary C. Bodine, Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs Reservation of Oregon, interning at The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ);
- Travis G. Clark, Osage Nation, interning with the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, in the Office of the Solicitor;
- Aja Conrad, Karuk Tribe of California, interning in the office of U.S. Senator Mark Udall;
- Helena Cross, Three Affiliated Tribes of the Fort Berthold Reservation, interning in the office of U.S. Senator Tim Johnson;
- Maria Givens, Coeur D’Alene Tribe, interning in the office of U.S. Senator Tom Udall;
- Jacqueline Keliiaa, Yerington Paiute Tribe, interning with the U.S. Department of Education in the Office of Indian Education;
- Mary Matilda Lindeblad-Fry, Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation, interning with the U.S. Department of the Interior, Bureau of Indian Affairs, in the Office of the Assistant Secretary;
- Travis Lovett, The Echota Cherokee Tribe of Alabama, interning with the U.S. Senate Committee on Indian Affairs, Majority Office;
- Letitia M. Stover, Navajo Nation, interning in the office of U.S. Senator John McCain; and
- Aurora Trujillo, Taos Pueblo Tribe, interning in the office of U.S. Senator Jeff Bingaman.