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Allison Butler | American University

FMF projects worked on: Web Team, Education Equity, National Clinic Access Project

Hometown: Frederick, Md.

Favorite moment of your internship: The first week Ann Marie (the other web team intern) and I were asked to make a graphic and foolishly agreed to because we claimed we had PhotoShop experience. Turned out neither of us were very proficient at PS and we ended up switching to a different program but it came out great and I get excited every time I see it come up on the Girls Learn blog. 

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would... make intelligence, savvy, and doing the right thing speak louder than money. 

I Am a Feminist Because...duh? But the first time I realized I was a feminist is a much funnier story: I was about ten and "Margaritaville" was on the radio and I announced to my mother that I was very pleased that Jimmy Buffet realizes by the end of the song that is probably not a woman's fault that his life is what it is. My mom laughed at me.  

Advice For Future Interns? Take advantage of all of the opportunities and connections that are available. I got another internship for during the school year while working here and had to chance to go to some amazing events. You are never too busy in the office to get out and meet people.

Beth Humphries | University of Pittsburgh/Masters of Social Work

FMF projects worked on: Virginia Elections, Government Relations, N-CAP, and Women in Federal Law Enforcement

Hometown: Vienna, Va.

Favorite moment of your internship: Lobbying on the hill for policies to prevent sexual assault in the military.

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would... Make people nicer. 

I Am a Feminist Because...Women need a pro-women voice. 

Advice For Future Interns? Do everything you can. Even if it doesn’t sound exciting, it will be.

Chris DiCesare | Macalester College

FMF projects worked on: Education Equity, State Capitals

Hometown:Westford, Ma.

Favorite moment of your internship: Tabling for FMF at the Planned Parenthood Youth Organizing and Policy Conference.

I Am a Feminist Because...I support and stand with the goal of dismantling the patriarchy. 

Advice For Future Interns? Make the most of your time here because it goes by fast!

Gaisu Yari | University of Virginia

FMF projects worked on: Women in Afghanistan

Hometown: Afghanistan

Favorite moment of your internship: The greatest moment of my time at Feminist Majority Foundation was when I first got there and Ellie came to check that everything was okay with me in my life.

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would...Go to Afghanistan and build schools for women.

I Am a Feminist Because...Because of my bad life experience where I noticed that I was abused because of being a woman.

Advice For Future Interns? Take this opportunity as a serious process where you can learn a different way of thought and expression.

Grace Reinke | Louisiana State University

FMF projects worked on: Government Relations and State Capitals

Hometown: Atlanta, Ga.

Favorite moment of your internship: Standing really close to Nancy Pelosi (twice!)

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would...Make it so it never gets cold outside.

I Am a Feminist Because...Buffy.

Advice For Future Interns? Don't be intimidated by all the DC guys in fancy suits. You're probably ten times smarter than most of them.

Thelma Hernandez

FMF projects worked on: Virginia Project/State Capitals/Government Relations

Hometown: Delano, Ca.

Favorite moment of your internship: Going to the ACA press conference and taking a picture with Nancy Pelosi.

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would...Change advertising’s work on creating an unattainable ideal of femininity and masculinity, in order to encourage self-love

I Am a Feminist Because...There’s still a lot of injustice in our world, and we need to keep pushing for change to create a better society; especially for those who have, throughout history, been subjugated. 

Advice For Future Interns? Don’t be afraid to admit you don’t know about something, ask and discuss it through with your fellow interns and supervisors.

Molly Katherine Anderson | University of West Georgia

FMF projects worked on: Government Relations- Military Sexual Assault, State capitals project- Georgia legislative memo, Campus Organizing- Outreach to southern affiliates and chapters

Hometown: Difficult question. I moved around a lot as a kid. So I’ll just say the world?

Favorite moment of your internship: Attending the coalitions with other organizations and lobbying senators for the Military Justice Improvement Act. I really felt like I was participating in the nitty-gritty of politics, and I absolutely loved it.

If I Could Change One Thing About the World I Would...Make people more willing to discuss things. One very interesting thing about this internship was the level of disagreement between various politicians, talking-heads, even between FMF interns. Don’t get me wrong, I love disagreement! That’s what makes the world beautiful and diverse! But I feel that disagreement is most productive when we can talk about our differences and come to some kind of consensus regarding our next “move” as an organization/political unit/country. It really frustrates me when people feel strongly about something but are unwilling to talk about it.

I Am a Feminist Because...I used to say that I was feminist because “women are people” but I think my brand of feminism goes a little beyond that. I think that femininity and non-masculinity, as it is seen in both women and men, are devalued in society. I think we’ll be able to achieve equality when we value other gender expressions as much as we do the masculine sort. So…I guess I’m a feminist because I believe in equality among sexes and genders. Also, intersectionality.

Advice For Future Interns?

 -Budget. I was a total n00b to DC when I can here, so I had no idea I’d be paying out the wazzoo for a can of beans. To avoid the cost, buy food in bulk online, set aside money for transportation costs, and take the bus instead of the train. I know this is really general stuff, but it’s really worth repeating.

-Try to live close to DC. I know a lot of people can’t afford to live in DC proper, but seriously try to live in the thick of things if you can (subletting is really popular over here). Not only will you gain access to some of the most awesomest museums in the world, you’ll also be better able to attend last-minute rallies, intern parties, and other stuff without freaking out over transportation home.

-Get business cards.  I really didn’t think I needed business cards as an unpaid intern in DC. But there were several occasions throughout the internship when I made awesome connections, and I found myself thinking “Darn, a business card would be awesome right now.” If you can, make a simple business card with your contact info on it. You can hand them out at mixers and other networking events.

-Know all the things.  You have to know stuff before you can do stuff. So make it your goal to KNOW ALL THE THINGS ALL THE TIME. Meticulously monitor the news, read legislation rather than relying on second-hand summaries, make a twitter account just to follow social justice organizations. Once you know what’s going on, you can contribute more effectively! I know this sounds really basic, but I was totally floored by how quickly the status of a bill could change in the course of an hour. Keeping up-to-date, and I mean keeping up-to-data-to-the-very-minute, is vital.

-Be your own advocate! While the FMF staff is awesome, no one here can read your mind. If you’re interested in something, tell a staff person. If you see a feminist event that you want to attend, ask someone if you can go. Similarly, tell someone if you’re having trouble understanding something or if you have to little/too much work. People here are super nice! They won’t get mad!

-Use your supervisor. Bring your interests and ideas to the attention of your supervisors. You never know if they’ll have follow-up suggestions, projects, or connections. FMF has so many awesome resources, and your supervisor can give you access to them!

-Talk about stuff with your fellow interns. Things go so much more smoothly if you know your fellow interns just a little bit. So try to make friends!

-Make time for administrative work. One think I truly loved about FMF was its clear distinction between unpaid intern work and paid admin work (yes, PAID work is available). While intern work should be at the forefront of your mind, try to spend an hour or so every day on paid admin work. FMF pays over the minimum wage for admin work. Take advantage of that!