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Bravo For Our Summer Interns!

July 20, 2012

Summer is always a great time at Consulate General Strasbourg because our staff is increased with the addition of our summer interns.  They bring energy, enthusiasm and sometimes teach us new ways of looking at things.  Plus, they make it possible for us to get much more work done!

Katherine and Etienne with some other Consulate members commemorating our new flag pole

What is a “summer intern”, you ask?  The State Department and our Mission in France have two different programs.  One is for American college and graduate school students wishing to experience what it like to work in a U.S. diplomatic mission, while the other is for French college students wishing to complete a “stage.”   The program for American students involves internships that last between 10 to 12 weeks.  Competition is stiff, and applications are due far in advance of the internship dates.  For example, for our summer internships, applications are due the previous November.  For information on how to apply, check out this website:  http://careers.state.gov/students/programs.  Our internship program for French students provides six week “stages” for college students.  Here in Strasbourg we look for candidates who have demonstrated an interest in international affairs and who speak excellent English.  For more information on the application process, contact U.S. Embassy in Paris.  You can also check out this website: http://france.usembassy.gov/fnsinternships.html

This summer we are fortunate to have two GREAT summer interns.  Etienne Lepers, who has already completed his internship, is a student at Sciences Po in Paris who will be spending next year studying abroad at a major U.S. university in New York.  He was a great help to us during the recent French legislative elections, providing us with reporting and analysis on the different legislative races in our consular district.  He also accompanied me to meetings of the Council of Europe’s Committee of Ministers and helped write several reports that were sent to Washington on issues currently being debated at the Council of Europe.  He represented the Consulate at a number of conferences and receptions, and was also a great help when we hosted a delegation of U.S. Congressmen.  Finally, he provided me with daily press briefings, keeping me up-to-date on all the major political, economic, and social issues in our Consular District.  He did a fantastic job and was a great team player.  We are grateful for his outstanding assistance and wish him all the best in his studies in New York.

 

Team Strasbourg after the Independence Day celebration – Go Team Strasbourg!

Our American intern this summer is Katherine Miller, who will be a senior at Knox College in Illinois.  Prior to joining our team, she spent the previous nine months perfecting her French not far from here at the highly-acclaimed Center for Applied Linguistics in Besancon, France.  She, also, has been providing invaluable assistance to us in our coverage of the Council of Europe.  She attended the entire Parliamentary Assembly session in June, preparing detailed reports on a number of subjects.  She also played a key role in the visit of the Congressmen to Strasbourg and was a major help in planning, organizing, and executing our important annual Independence Day celebrations.  She’s represented the Consulate at a number of ceremonies and placed a wreath for us at the annual memorial ceremony at the nearby Struthof concentration camp.   This week she accompanied our Public Diplomacy Specialist to an art center focusing on disadvantaged youth to assess whether we can partner with them.  Next week she’ll head to Paris for a day to visit the Embassy.  Because of her flawless French, she was able to pick up where Etienne left off on the daily press briefings.   And despite all the work we’re forcing her to do, she’s still had time to do some wine tasting and touring around France on the weekends!  We’re very fortunate to have her with us for the rest of the summer, and even though things are quieting down, we’re going to be certain to keep her busy.

So if you’re a French or American student who thinks it might be cool to find out what it’s like to be a diplomat, think about applying for one of our internship opportunities.  We’d love to have you on our team!  And, again, BRAVO to Katherine and Etienne!!!

Evan Reade

 

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