Colleen O’Hara ’12, will spend her summer as an intern for Congressman Michael Arcuri (D-N.Y.) in her hometown of Utica, N.Y., working on his reelection campaign and learning the ins and outs of life as a civil servant. O’Hara is a political science major and urban studies minor, and is excited to do more than just make phone calls and file paperwork. She says she is eager to “Figure out how to solve the problems that communities have. How do you create a just city? I want to benefit the greatest amount of people possible.”
During the “Day on the Hill Program” led by career services, O’Hara walked into Congressman Arcuri’s office and introduce herself. “I literally walked down the hall, and Congressman Arcuri’s office was on the same floor. I knocked on the door and walked right in.” By taking a risk and networking while she was in D.C., O’Hara landed the internship opportunity of her dreams. She not only plans to aid in Arcuri’s campaign this summer, but also hopes to transfer to his D.C. office while she studies off campus there in the fall.
Last summer, working Reunion Weekend with Alumni House showed O’Hara how to multitask, juggle a hectic schedule, and network with new people – all the while improving her communication skills and preparing her for the internship with Arcuri.
O’Hara plans to attend law school and aspires to become a State Senator. She is involved at HWS, having been president of the William Smith Class of 2012 for two years, vice president of William Smith Congress, co-founder and co-captain of HWS Cheers, a volunteer for the Geneva Community Lunch Program, a service learning colleague, and a participant of the Learn to Lead Program with Dean Lisa Kaenzig.