For a student interested in foreign policy, international relations and non-profits, an internship at the McCain Institute offers the right combination for a useful summer experience. Such is the case for Carter King ’19, a government major interning in Washington, D.C, with the organization’s human rights and democracy team, working to combat human rights violations.
The McCain Institute is a non-partisan do-tank dedicated to advancing character-driven global leadership based on security, economic opportunity, freedom and human dignity – in the United States and around the world.
For King, a typical workday begins by reviewing news outlets for updates on international human rights violations, focusing mainly on the Democratic Republic of the Congo, South Sudan and Eastern Europe, where violations tend to be especially severe. After that, there is usually some standard “intern” work to be done, for example, going back and forth to the embassy of the DRC in an ongoing attempt by King to get a visa for his boss (it is especially difficult for Americans to be approved for a travel visa there.)
Often, King is asked to research and write a one or two memo/brief on a relevant topic, such as background on potential donors or foreign government officials. “Writing a memo each day forces me to practice writing faster and more succinctly, a useful skill I am excited to fine-tune this summer,” said King. Much like at Hamilton, a strong emphasis on good, clear writing pervades the McCain Institute. About once a week, King attends an event outside the office, such as a hearing on the Hill or meeting at a brother organization. There, King takes notes, records relevant happenings and relays them to his superiors.
Hometown: New Castle, N.H.
High School: The Governor’s School
In conjunction with this work, King is working on a longer term project, creating a comprehensive presentation which maps human rights trafficking across Africa and Europe. This presentation will be used to help attract donors and educate visitors to the institute. “We have a very cool seven-screen presentation room and we are trying to maximize its full potential,” King said.
King hopes to apply the lessons learned from his work this summer not only to academic life at Hamilton: “I would be very interested in practicing international law, which is similar, but perhaps more involved than the work I am doing at the McCain Institute.”