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Intern Bios

Get to know the fabulous Summer 2007 East Coast Interns

Ariel Dara Jackie Jordan Kate Katelyn Katie Lydia Margaret Marjorie Meg Megan Rita

 

Ariel Hunsberger

Ariel Hunsberger

 

School: The College of William and Mary
Major(s): Global Studies; European Studies
Minor(s)/ Concentration: French
Year: Senior

Projects for the summer: I work on the awareness campaigns on global violence against women. I'm also doing research on domestic reproductive rights, otherwise known as making friends with campus health centers and getting them to fill out my survey!

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? Getting to wander all around DC going to cool events, the random things we learn everyday, and how much we laugh.

What does feminism mean to you? Making my little sister feel like she can do anything.

Advice for future interns: Go to any and every event at the Willard Hotel, fabulous free food in huge quantities!

Best thing you've done this summer: Stood on my roof looking out over DC in a thunderstorm!

Favorite thing about DC: walking over the bridges over the river in the wind while wearing a skirt

The best thing about being a feminist is: Smiling at everyone who stares at me.

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Dara

Dara Walker

 

School: Eastern Michigan University
Major(s): African American Studies
Minor(s)/Concentration: Gender and Women's Studies
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer: I am currently working on updating and developing women of color and LGBT fact sheets with respect to reproductive health. However, my passion is in my research around the national attack on affirmative action (with the intention of actually winning in a few states). Finally, I'm putting in a little work to pull the Women of Color Conference together.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? I enjoy working as an unpaid intern, but more than that, I love that FMF takes on a diverse array of issues within the women's movement. This internship has provided me with a real opportunity to work as an activist in Washington, DC. It has also shown me that it is up to us to change the current political atmosphere.

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism is my right to choose not to answer this question.

Advice for future interns: 1) Check out The Washington Post's Intern Guide site. With hot clubs, housing, and great eating spots, this website is a great source for interns who are new to the area. 2) Don't assume anything 3) Make every experience (good/bad) a life lesson. My life lesson # 26: Ask if there are previous versions of fact sheets before you reinvent the wheel.

Best thing you've done this summer: I actually developed project management skills.

Favorite thing about DC: DC is like the best. Of course I say that because this is my home…

The best thing about being a feminist is: that I'm a feminist

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Jackie

Jackie Coats

 

School: University of Michigan
Major(s):
Communication Studies
Minor(s)/ Concentration: Gender, Race, and Ethnicity
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer: Currently, I am working on one of the regional conferences as part of FMF's From Campus to Congress conference entitled Empowering Women of Color to Create Change. I have been working on both outreach and logistics for the conference. I promote and market Ms. Magazine at conferences and am currently working on the upcoming 35th Anniversary issue of Ms. Magazine, which includes finding interested advertisers for the magazine as well as working on the creative side with deciding on topics to discuss in the special edition.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? What I enjoy most about being an intern is working with like-minded individuals from all different backgrounds who have come together to fight for one common cause. Everyone here is unique in their own way and it is a space where everyone feels comfortable just being themselves.

What does feminism mean to you? For me, feminism means fighting oppression. It does not simply mean equal rights for women, but it means equal rights for everyone, including minorities, the poor, the young, the old, the LGBTQQI2S and all other oppressed groups. It means never treating any specific group as if they are second-class citizens and lower to anyone else. It simply means equality.

Advice for future interns: Nothing you get assigned will be new! This means when you get an assignment to write a letter or research different groups, or anything else always ask for old versions of the project because I guarantee you there will already be some information around the office that will be helpful to you.

Best thing you've done this summer: The Lifetime Television Reception was by far the best event, second only to the New Faces, More Voices event. The Fourth of July event where I met Ben at Johnny Rockets was also very fun.

Favorite thing about DC: There is always something to do around town. DC has a million events that happen all day every day and many of them are specifically for summer interns and many of them are also FREE! And of course I do love all the many escalators that come in all different sizes.

The best thing about being a feminist is: Advocating on behalf of those who are not able to do it for themselves and being a part of something bigger than yourself. And of course the look I get from people when I tell them I'm a feminist. It's absolutely priceless.


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Jordan

Jordan Long

 

School: Syracuse University
Major(s): Advertising and Sociology
Minor(s): Women's Studies
Year: Senior

Projects for the summer: I have been working on Ms. Magazine projects including promotions of the magazine, locating new advertisers, and updating the domestic violence shelter database. I have also been putting together the intern bio page in addition to updating some online databases for the web team.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? I have really enjoyed spending time with other progressive people. It has been inspirational to see everyone uniting to further a common cause. Being in DC has been great too!

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism means uniting to fight for true equality between men and women. It means giving women the power of choice and enabling them to have the freedom to use it.

Advice for future interns: Don't take a dolly on an escalator or your boxes will obviously fall everywhere, get directions that are accurate to wherever you are going, try not to have a 2 hour commute into the office, and make sure you can laugh at yourself.

Best thing you've done this summer: Spending time with the other interns in the office has clearly been awesome!

Favorite thing about DC: There is always something to do or somewhere to go.

The best thing about being a feminist is: I love it when people have a stereotypical view of what being a feminist means. They always tend to give you very strange looks or make some smart comment about it, but when you actually explain to them why you are a feminist and what being a feminist means, they often say, “Oh well I guess I am a feminist then.”

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Kate

Kate Whitelaw

 

School: Queen's University
Major(s):
Political Science
Minor(s)/Concentration:
Religious Studies
Year:
Senior

Projects for the summer:
• Report on Women and Water Issues
• Development and funding
• Sweatshop Fact Sheet
• Adapting the Campus program for creating Canadian university FMLAs

What do you like about being an intern at FMF? Interning at FMF offers a student a unique opportunity to engage in grassroots activism and foster his or her passion for social justice, while also gaining valuable exposure to the world of policy in DC. FMF offers a program with the perfect combination of skills-development, substantive work and a friendly and nurturing work environment.

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism is about a basic human right: the right to equal treatment and opportunity for men and women.

Advice for future interns: Never wear denim with denim.

Best thing you've done this summer: A highlight of the summer has been attending political events, from hearing Michael Moore speak in Congress to watching Hilary Clinton and Madeline Albright from the VIP section of Club 44.

Favorite thing about DC: Memorials at dusk and the Potomac at dawn.

The best thing about being a feminist is: That it is about more than just one issue—it's about the environment, war and peace, science and health, politics and the economy. Feminist elements are always relevant.

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Katelyn

Katelyn Bryant-Comstock

 

School: University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill
Major(s): English
Minor(s)/ Concentration: Women's Studies
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer: Working on creating a website for The Afghan Women's Health Campaign and updating and adding new material to our Body Image and Disability Rights Campaigns.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? Having the chance to work with a progressive organization and learning more about how a non-profit runs. Also, being able to work on projects that deal with issues that I care about and learning how I can help make a difference in these matters.

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism to me means fighting for the equality between men and women, and working for equal rights for all human beings. Feminism also represents women having the ability and freedom to make choices to do anything they want with their lives.

Advice for future interns: Wear sandals on the walk up the hill from the metro.

Best thing you've done this summer: The Harry Potter book and movie, obviously.

Favorite thing about DC: The Free Museums

The best thing about being a feminist is: Hearing the stereotypes that people have about feminism.

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Katie

Katie Green

 

School: Wellesley College
Major(s): Political Science; Women's Studies
Year: Senior

Projects for the summer: Congressional Council – Keep track of congressional races for '08 and research what feminist candidates we should endorse/encourage to run; research legislation relating to women's issues; go to committee hearings on the hill!

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? In addition to the other interns, I really enjoy attending hearings on the hill and going to briefings on a variety of women's issues.

What does feminism mean to you? On a basic level, feminism means the desire to attain gender equality in all aspects of life. On a personal level, I ascribe to the radical theory of feminism and hope to work at identifying and changing the underlying patriarchal hierarchies that manifest themselves as varying forms of misogynistic practices across the globe.

Advice for future interns: Make sure to take time every week for some tomfoolery and for scaring your fellow interns (clawhands are a bonus).

Best thing you've done this summer: Attending the midnight showing of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix and dressing up for the midnight release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Favorite thing about DC: The FDR Memorial – yeah, I'm just that nerdy.

The best thing about being a feminist is: The great bumper stickers and buttons!

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Lydia

Lydia Weiss

 

School: Michigan State University
Major(s): Sociology
Minor(s)/ Concentration: Women, Gender and Social Justice
Year: Senior!!!! And yes, I am terrified!

Projects for the summer: Called a bazillion organizations and convinced some of them to advertise with Ms. Magazine; helped plan/organize the student conference in New Orleans – the Southern Leadership Summit; called some organizations to advertise with Ms.; wrote for the feminist newswire and then called some more organizations to advertise with Ms.!

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? Being in the presence of strong feminists every day and being a part of these amazing organizations that have created so much change in the struggle for women's rights.

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism is a lifestyle. It means living day to day with consciousness of the patriarchal system that presides over every aspect of our lives. It means fighting for equality with every breath.

Advice for future interns: Have a stash of candy in one of the desk drawers because cravings for sweets are quite strong about mid-way through the day!

Best thing you've done this summer: Saw Gloria Steinem speak at the Choice USA awards ceremony the first week I was here.

Favorite thing about DC: Tourists… clearly that's a lie. In honesty, probably the plethora of events happening every single day, although it is exhausting, it's been an incredible opportunity to network and hear from experts about topics you're passionate about.

The best thing about being a feminist is: Converting people. I love debunking myths about “our kind” and then helping them realize that they identify with our ideals.

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Margaret

Margaret Schuster

 

School: St. Mary's College of MD
Major(s): History & English Literature and Composition
Minor(s)/ Concentration: Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies Minor
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer:

  • Global Reproductive Rights: I am updating and creating fact sheets on various issues such as International Family Planning, International Aid and Global Gag Rule. Later we will be converting many of these Fact Sheets to updating the website to make it more coherent and organized.

  • Domestic Reproductive Health: I am working with Ariel on designing and eventually conducting a survey of college and university health centers to see how the rise in birth control costs has affected them. Also we are updating and creating fact sheets regarding these issues.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? I like when I'm typing with “Hoops” sitting on my keyboard and smiling at me. So cute! Also, the aquarium is morally superior to every part of the office except for Ellie's.

What does feminism mean to you? Feminism, for me, means being able to search for your identity and fight for equality in all facets of your life. Feminism cultivates your ability to relate to other people on a meaningful level that goes beyond simple logic to truly understand the whole individual. Feminism works to change the rules of the game of life so everyone has a fair shot from the outset.

Advice for future interns: Dream but don't sleep because you'll sleep when you're dead. Steal food whenever you have the chance at events and conferences. Laugh when you fall on your butt… we all do it at some point! Go to Greenberry's every day at 2:45 so you can make it through meetings and briefings that usually happen at 3pm .

Best thing you've done this summer: I went to a press conference to promote H.R. 676, a bill for single-payer healthcare system via the expansion of Medicaid to all residents of the United States . It was in the House Judiciary Committee where Chairman Rep. John Conyers brought in co-sponsors of the bill, including presidential candidate Rep. Dennis Kucinich, and hosted the film maker Michael Moore who previewed his new film “Sicko.” I got to meet Rep. Conyers and he was so gracious to know Feminist Majority interns were at his big event.

Favorite thing about DC: I laugh as I watch the tourists with helmets speeding on segways through downtown DC. I also love the variety of events and food. I can be vegetarian so happily and easily! Plus… fantastic ice cream shops all around!

The best thing about being a feminist is: At Ms. Magazine table at American Library Association Conference-
Man: “So you want men to be doormats?”
Me: “No. We want gender equality.”
Man: “Oh, so you don't want to be a doormat?”
Me: “Exactly!”

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Marjorie

Marjorie Schaeffer

 

School: Wellesley College
Major(s):
Psychology
Minor
: Education Studies
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer: Education Equity (Title IX) and Women and Policing

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? Interning at FMF has provided me with insights into how policy is created. I have also enjoyed the opportunities to attend briefings and meet members of other organizations.

What does feminism mean to you? For me feminism is about equal opportunities and expectations for women and men.

Advice for future interns: The postage meter is far more complicated then you might think—be careful it eats letters.

Best thing you've done this summer: I have really enjoyed the briefings I went to especially the National Clearing House on Women's Issues presentation about the state and federal ERAs and the American Association of University Women's presentation on STEM careers.

Favorite thing about DC: I like being in a city full of people of similar age with similar passions.

The best thing about being a feminist is: I love when you explain feminism to other people and then they turn to you and say “oh, well yeah that makes sense” or “when you use that definition I guess I am a feminist.” I don't know if there is a best thing about being a feminist, I think it is a necessity.

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Meg

Meg Schmitt

 

School: Smith College
Major: Government
Minor : African Studies
Year: Junior

Projects for the summer: Congressional Council- keep track of congressional races for '08 and research what feminist candidates we should endorse/encourage to run; research legislation relating to women's issues; go to committee hearings on the hill!

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? First off the other interns are fantastic and make being here truly worth it. Work wise, while there are some small tasks here and there, I usually feel like what I'm doing actually matters. The staff is also great and encourages us to go to speakers and conferences constantly, and organize guest speakers to come in to the office for us.

What does feminism mean to you? Without being too cheesy or cliché, it's the recognition that not only are women deserving of equal rights, but are also strong leaders and capable of pretty incredible things. Example: Ellie Smeal.

Advice for future interns: Get a desk in the aquarium… it's where it's at.

Best thing you've done this summer: Plotting midnight Harry Potter excursions, both cinematic and literary, with fellow interns.

Favorite thing about DC: It's entirely dorky but I still get chills when I walk past the Capitol building…and watching metro passengers get stuck in doors.

The best thing about being a feminist is: Fighting the good fight, one fight at a time.

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Megan

Megan Steel

 

School: George Mason University
Major(s): Social Work
Minor: Global Affairs
Year: Senior

Projects for the summer: Education Equity: working to update the website to include information about the High School Athletics Accountability Act, High School Sports Information Collection, and new statistics for women in sports. I am on the program committee for the group project, which includes: setting an agenda, researching speakers, deciding on topics relevant to the theme, and coordinating with other committees. I also wrote regularly for the Feminist News Wire.

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? Forum Hour in the Aquarium. Basically, this means that I enjoyed the conversations I had with the other interns in my office area.

What does feminism mean to you? Being myself.

Advice for future interns: Bring flip flops, eat Quizno's, read the Washington Post everyday, be yourself, avoid I-495 and I-66 at all costs, and be nice to the morning parking attendant.

Best thing you've done this summer: Katelyn and I trying to get our picture taken with Ralph Nader at the Campus Progress National Student Conference…and hearing Nancy Pelosi speak. Concocting superb nicknames for the FMF interns and various office locations. Enjoying the Fourth of July with the other interns.

Favorite thing about DC: The insane amount of events, museums, concerts, and happy hours to go to around the city... Emphasis on the happy hour part.

The best thing about being a feminist is: Hearing other people's explanation of feminism or feminists, whatever that may be. In my opinion the Fem-Nazi version is always the most amusing…

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Rita

Rita Xia

 

School: University of Virginia
Major(s): Economics, Foreign Affairs
Year: Sophomore

Projects for the summer:

  • Women & Policing – preparing for the annual conference in the fall

  • ERA – track list of co-sponsors in the past decade

  • Women of Color conference – various factsheets

What do you like about being an intern at FMF/Ms. Magazine? I like being an intern at FMF because we actually get to learn about current legislations that affect women's issues. I also love the enthusiasm everyone brings to their work.

What does feminism mean to you? The meaning of feminism to me is pretty much what's listed under the Equal Rights Amendment – equality regardless of gender. Any issues that pertain to gender equality can be described as feminist issues.

Advice for future interns: Get here early so you can avoid the crazy metro traffic.

Best thing you've done this summer: Running to the National Capitol for briefings and whatnot, esp. attending that Michael Moore press conference

Favorite thing about DC: Plenty of college-age people to meet in the summer

The best thing about being a feminist is: People think you're an aggressive female, which is not a bad thing.

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