Internship Location: Chicago, IL
Organizational Type: Nonprofit
Policy Area:Health policy and social welfare
This spring, I had the opportunity of interning at the Jewish United Fund (JUF) as a federal policy intern on the government affairs team. The Jewish United Fund provides vital services and plays a pivotal role in the policymaking process advocating for the city of Chicago. JUF is a large fundraising organization that serves the Chicagoland community with support in healthcare, childcare, food insecurity, and many more issues facing the city. One of my duties as an intern was to help plan and execute a lobbying mission to meet with members of the Illinois delegation in Congress. I was tasked with developing agendas and briefs for issues surrounding the shortage of mental health professionals, charitable giving tax deductions, and Holocaust education bills. I had the opportunity to become an expert on these issues and utilize my policy-based writing skills to advocate for reform. I had the pleasure of shadowing the lobbying missions and seeing an actual example of the policymaking process as it happened, with members of the JUF advocating for Chicago congressmen to support or oppose the specific bills being presented. Throughout my internship, I gained increased knowledge and specialization in policy issues like health policy and social welfare like food stamps. I also gained important workplace skills. I had to communicate in a remote setting and learn how to advocate for myself when I needed to ask for help or clarification on a task. I am confident that my experience working at the Jewish United Fund has given me necessary skills to enter the policy sphere and be prepared for future opportunities in the workplace.