ANS student members are encouraged to apply to the Washington Internships for Students of Engineering (WISE) program for the opportunity to spend next summer exploring the intersection of technology and policy in Washington, D.C.
“WISE provides a unique opportunity for ANS student members to learn about how our government deals with technologically complex issues,” said ANS Fellow and WISE program coordinator Alan Levin. “Past interns have said that the program is a challenging and enjoyable experience that gave them new perspectives on engineering and government; for some, the program influenced their choice of post-graduate study and/or career.”
Policy influencers: Former WISE interns Sydney Hamilton and Erik Olson both credit the WISE program with influencing their post-college career plans. Hamilton, who participated in the WISE program in 2017, is now a systems engineer at Systems Planning & Analysis and contracts for the U.S. Navy. Olson, a 2018 participant, is a climate and energy analyst with the Breakthrough Institute, an Oakland, Calif.–based research organization.
“WISE showed me that it was possible to make an impact on policies that matter to me because of my technical background, not in spite of it,” said Hamilton, who is pursuing a master’s degree in public administration with a concentration in nuclear security policy at George Washington University. “I realized there were many ways to leverage my technical expertise to influence policy and that my experience could be used in a variety of sectors. WISE is also the reason I have the job I have today—the connections I made in the program resulted in my finding my company and receiving a personal recommendation to work there.”
Added Olson: “WISE kickstarted my career in energy policy. I learned how to apply my technical education to solve policy challenges. While a WISE intern, I made valuable professional connections that led to me getting my current job. Getting to experience and network in the nation’s capital while learning how valuable it is for engineers to be involved in the policy process was powerful.”
Apply now: Applications are now being accepted for the 2021 WISE program, which will run from May 30 to July 31. The application is available on the WISE website and must be submitted by February 1. Questions should be directed to Alan Levin, ANS WISE coordinator.