Foreign service beckons

Students at Florida A&M University could have the opportunity to work closely with the Barack Obama administration, if chosen for the Rangel Internship.

The 2009 Charles Rangel Summer Enrichment Program is for college sophomores and seniors planning to attend graduate school.

The program is named for veteran Congressman Charles B. Rangel of Harlem, N.Y.
Rangel, who is serving his 19th term in Congress, is a memeber of the Congressional Black Caucus and Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee.

Twenty minority students will be selected as Rangel Scholars and will intern in Washington, D.C. with Congress.

The program pays for travel costs and room and board. The scholars will also receive a stipend, according to program organizers.

“I am willing to assist any students that are seriously interested in the Foreign Service, with their application,” said Roberto Powers, a Diplomat- in-Residence at FAMU.

Applicants must have at least a 3.2 grade point average to be considered. Sophomores and seniors must submit an application, recommendation letters, an essay and official transcripts, Powers added.

Patricia Hanigan-Scroggs, program manager for the Rangal Internship, said undergraduates will intern for six weeks in Washington D.C. and attend Howard University.

She said they will also meet with policymakers to discuss international affairs.

“We hope more students are interested and take advantage of this opportunity especially since Obama’s administration will be handling these affairs,” Hanigan-Scroggs said.

Seniors and graduate students will receive up to $32,500 in aid toward completing a master’s degree, she added.

Powers said students are graduating and struggling to find a job and this internship gives minority students the tools to have a steady career that pays to travel and continue learning.

Calvin Hayes, 21, a junior public relations student from Orlando, will intern with the State Department this summer to prepare for the senior fellowship.

“This is a great career experience now that Obama is transitioning into office,” Hayes said. “Mostly, because he is the image the rest of the world will see when they think of America, so it will provide more doors to open for me and other minorities.”

The deadline for sophomores to apply is Feb. 13. The deadline for seniors to apply is Jan. 23.

For assistance completing the application contact Roberto Powers at (850) 599-3295 or visit him in  the Perry Paige Building, Room 305N.