Thursday, October 20, 2011

Changing Directions: Informative and Informational Posts Upcoming

In an effort to provide this blog more direction, usefulness, and frequency, I am going to begin detailing what the entire TWC program entails, start to finish. My inspiration for doing so came Tuesday of this past week, when I became absolutely, 100%, would not change a thing satisfied with every aspect of my experience thus far. I hope my subsequent posts will be a helpful reference for future TWC interns, as each will detail what has worked for me. Bottom line, be proactive. But first, what have I been up to?

I finally started to work on my own professional development, outside of the TWC program. I feel like if someone sat me down on day one and said, “This is what you should be doing,” I would not have wasted the first month and a half being so timid. Anyway, last Friday I went in to an Oklahoma Congressional office and asked to speak with their Chief of Staff. I wanted to impress upon them how motivated I was to be part of a Congressional Campaign next year, but was told they were busy and I left with a business card. A few emails later landed me an informational interview on Monday of this week. We spoke about possible options and I left much better informed and optimistic about my possibilities

I also made some inroads with Headcount. They are an organization which conducts voter registration drives at concert events across the country. I volunteered to help and will be doing so in the near future.

I also will be a volunteer at the 30th annual Turkish-American Business Council event, being held at the Ritz-Carlton in DC. Why not, I thought, it sounded pretty interesting and I should be able to meet some very interesting people.

On Tuesday I was able to move from the finance department over to the political department in the NRCC. This is where I have supposed to of been all along, I can feel the intensity in the room and it’s very refreshing. Right now I am compiling information on all the Republican Candidates for House seats across the country. It is a really interesting project and I love going to work every day. This is the event that put my TWC experience into the “it doesn’t get any better than this” category.

I will provide details on how I think future TWC interns can achieve this as well in the coming days, beginning with TWC internship placement process.

PS: Did anyone else feel embarresed for Rick Perry in the last debate like I did? I don't really like or dislike the guy all that much, but I did find myself feeling sorry for him. I mean, what do you say to him when he comes off the stage after something like that if your a consultant? Maybe......"say the sentence in your head first, then, when you feel confident in the delivery, write it down and read the words." I don't know who's telling him to engage Romney like that but keep up the good prep work!

Oh one last thing, VOTE RON PAUL 2012!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Goodness Gracious!

I have had another amazing week. I was able to get out of the city for a while, receive some amazing training, and I met my personal hero who just happens to be our nation’s next President. Things are going great!

Last Saturday I had a case of the blues. My wife had gone home and I was content to just sit and sulk, but I remembered that I had secured a spot on the bus to Atlantic City for the day. TWC had put the trip together and around 40 or so interns were lucky enough to go. We left at 8:00 am and got home at around 11:00 pm. I had no idea it was a 4-hour drive, but it was a nice change of scenery. I do not enjoy gambling so much but I was able to get a haircut and eat some crab cakes, so I ended up having a good time.

Beginning last Monday, I and another intern from the NRCC started a week long Campaign Manager School that was conducted by The Leadership Institute in Arlington, Virginia. There were around 30 or so political activist from across the country in attendance, which made it a great networking opportunity.

I can definitely say that I was completely ignorant of what a well-run, legitimate political campaign looks like and needs to have to win. We had experts ranging from Congressional Chiefs of Staff, who had previously run high-dollar campaigns, to industry leaders dealing in everything from direct mail to the newest internet ads giving lectures.

We also had a 3-hour class which was titled: Advanced New Media Workshop. It mostly dealt with how to effectively manage a candidates Facebook and Twitter accounts. It is all a little overwhelming right now, but I have another Campaign Manager School in November that is being conducted by the Republican National Committee. It is supposed to be more hands on with many situational exercises. I’ll do my best to hone my skills then.

On Wednesday of last week, I met Congressman Ron Paul who is a candidate for President! He was in town for a lunch which was held at the National Press Club. My Professor Steve Scully knew the lady who was coordinating the event, and was able to get me and 3 other students in, to stand in the back during his speech and the question and answer segment which followed.

The day got progressively better which each passing hour though. At around 10:00 am we got an email from Steve indicating his friend was able to get us all tickets to the lunch. Then, almost 30 minutes after that great news, another email arrived. We were now being allowed to participate in the VIP reception being held prior to the lunch with Rep. Paul.

Throughout this time we all met the Congressman, took multiple pictures with him, spoke with him individually, and I was able to get my pocket Constitution signed. It goes without saying that I was on Cloud 9 for the rest of the day. I even made a side trip to the National Archives, on the way back to my campaign class, to see the original Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Just caught up in the moment I guess.

Next week it’s back to my internship at the NRCC. So far there isn’t anything that really stands out about the week. But if this last one is any guide, I know that could change on a whim!