James McMahon ’11 will get to know the inner workings of his home state very well this summer. McMahon, a public policy major and history minor, is working for the Connecticut Secretary of State under Staff Attorney and Hobart alumnus Ted Bromley ’95. Fulfilling his interest in public policy, McMahon is working for the Election Law Division.
“This internship will help with my understanding of public policy, as well the execution and enforcement of it,” he said.
He looks forward to learning much more about the important players in his state legislature as well as the political structure that affects him personally. During this past academic year, McMahon had the opportunity to shadow a Geneva City Court judge and hopes to secure an internship for next year with Legal Aid of the Finger Lakes.
How has McMahon’s experience at Hobart and William Smith Colleges prepared him for the challenges of his upcoming internship? On campus he is active in Hobart Student Court as well as Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity, both of which have helped him develop a sense of leadership and an ability to work well with others. In terms of academics, he has greatly enjoyed and benefited from the active discussions in his various public policy classes and says he owes a lot to the teaching of Political Science Professor Paul Passavant. McMahon’s favorite classes so far have been Introduction to American Politics and Constitutional Law.
Through is work updating the Connecticut Voter Registry Database and ensuring all elections and votes follow protocol, he will learn the policy process behind a state regulatory system. An added benefit of his internship is the chance he’ll have to evaluate and help choose proposals for Connecticut’s new voting machines, an opportunity that very few people ever get.