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An inside look at state politics

For North­eastern Uni­ver­sity junior Kate Buckley, the energy cir­cu­lating through the Mass­a­chu­setts State House is an invig­o­rating rush that she hasn’t expe­ri­enced any­where else.

“It’s such a hub of action,” explained Buckley, a polit­ical sci­ence major. “Any­thing that hap­pens in this building is news­worthy, and now I’m a part of that.”

Buckley is but one of a handful of North­eastern stu­dents on co-​​op or com­pleting intern­ships at the State House for Mass­a­chu­setts Gov. Deval Patrick’s admin­is­tra­tion. Northeastern’s co-​​op pro­gram has long­standing ties to the State House: Stu­dents have worked for the governor’s office, state leg­is­la­tors and in state agencies.

Buckley, whose family has long been involved in local pol­i­tics, said it’s a priv­i­lege for her to work in the governor’s admin­is­tra­tive office, where she helps manage day-​​to-​​day oper­a­tions. “We handle so much infor­ma­tion that it affects everyone in the governor’s office,” she said.

Third-​​year polit­ical sci­ence and eco­nomics dual major Jonas Edwards-​​Jenks is on co-​​op in the governor’s press office. He is part of a small team that sends out press releases, pro­motes events and ini­tia­tives and works with state gov­ern­ment beat reporters.

He has also formed a close working rela­tion­ship with mem­bers of the State House press corps and local news orga­ni­za­tions, which cover the governor’s every move – from press con­fer­ences on Beacon Hill to a busy schedule that takes him across the state.

“It’s great to see things in action here,” Edwards-​​Jenks said. “Gov­ernor Patrick is someone I really admire, and it’s great to be a part of his team.”

In his ver­sa­tile role, Edwards-​​Jenks also super­vises sev­eral interns who work at the State House a few times a week.

One of those interns is Wyatt Ronan, a sopho­more com­mu­ni­ca­tion studies major who worked for the Patrick admin­is­tra­tion last semester. As part of a ser­vice learning class, he col­lab­o­rated with staff to pre­pare sev­eral speeches for the gov­ernor, including his Veteran’s Day address.

“It was an amazing expe­ri­ence,” Ronan said. “We worked hard to cap­ture the governor’s voice when we were writing, so it was great to hear him deliver remarks we had written.”

– by Matt Collette

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