WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley today announced a new scholarship program to enable Oregonians who could otherwise not afford to participate in a congressional internship to gain experience in his Washington D.C. and Portland offices.
In addition to the existing Otto and Verdell Rutherford Congressional Intern Scholarship, which is offered to individuals dedicated to addressing inequality, Merkley’s ‘We the People’ Congressional Intern Scholarship will be open to all individuals seeking financial support, extending the opportunity to far more Oregonians to receive financial support while interning on a full- or part-time basis.
“My first public service experience began when I served as an intern for Oregon Senator Mark O. Hatfield,” Merkley said. “I was only 19 at the time, and I would never have believed that 33 years later I would return to the Senate to represent Oregon in the seat once held by Senator Hatfield. As the first in my family to attend college, I have experienced firsthand the lifelong influence a Senate internship can provide.
“My family didn’t always have a lot of extra money when I was growing up, so I know that financial considerations can be important to making sure students from all walks of life can access this educational opportunity,” Merkley continued. “That’s why we’ve created these scholarships. They will increase the accessibility of intern positions in my offices—offering more students and recent graduates the same unique, life-changing opportunities that my internship afforded me.”
Scholarships are available for full-time or part-time internships in Washington D.C., or a part-time internship in Portland. Scholarship positions last between 10 and 14 weeks during the fall, winter, spring, and summer terms. Recipients of the ‘We the People’ Congressional Intern Scholarship will be a part of the traditional intern cohort, and receive the same internship experience as non-scholarship interns. In Merkley’s offices, interns are integrated as part of the team, and staff invest in facilitating interns’ professional development. More information on internships with Merkley’s office can be found here.