The Honors Community
- Falls Church, Va.
Paul Connet envisions big plans for the summer. Bigger than the summer of 2010, when the Virginia Commonwealth University math major worked as an intern in the Office of Presidential Correspondence at the White House in Washington, D.C.
Connet, who hopes to add a double major in political science or economics, finds the political process fascinating. He applied for the extremely competitive White House internship in January 2010 and got the job in May.
During the 10-week internship program, Connet fielded numerous emails from constituents and decided how to respond appropriately.
“Working in the White House was a great experience,” he said. “The work was what a real staffer would do.”
Connet’s employment experience also includes internships with VCU’s Virginia Capital Semester and Virginia House of Delegates member Steve Landes (pictured above with Connet on the house floor), stints in the office of Kansas Congressman Dennis Moore and participation in a Republican caucus. Next up, he’s aiming for a summer internship with Peter D. Hart Research Associates, a pollster organization in Washington, D.C.
“I just contacted someone there, so I’m trying to get my name out there and get in early,” Connet said.
A member of The Honors College since he entered VCU, Connet describes the environment as very encouraging. He started a debate team with some other students in fall 2009, and hopes to grow the young program to include more appearances at competitions.
“The Honors College encourages leadership,” Connet said. “They want students to step up and be active participants. It’s great to have that support when you’re trying to start an initiative.”
“Working in the White House was a great experience.”