Senator Tom Kean, (Rep.- Dist. 21), recently honored interns — including two college students from Basking Ridge — who volunteered in his Westfield legislative office this past summer. All participants received a citation signed by the legislator acknowledging their hard work and dedication on behalf of the constituents of District 21.
Frank Caratzola of Basking Ridge, a senior at Hobart College, said interning convinced him to pursue a career in politics. “Working with Senator Kean has been a truly wonderful experience that has enhanced my deep interest in politics and confirmed my decision to pursue a political career,” Caratzola said.
Kristin Yu of Basking Ridge, entering her first year at Rutgers Law School, also served as an intern with the senator this past year, according to the senator's office.
“We are so fortunate to have so many enthusiastic, intelligent young people eager to help out the residents of District 21 while learning about their state government,” Kean said in a release from his office. “It is my hope that by interning in my office, these students gained a deeper understanding of the inner workings of government and the political process that they would not gain elsewhere.”
The senator noted that the purpose of the internship program is to assist students in gaining a better understanding of the legislative process while cultivating their interest in governmental service. “Many of our interns have shown prior interest in government by taking relevant classes in school or summer programs. They show a remarkable familiarity with the issues, and yet are always eager to learn more,” Kean said.
Primarily, the interns assisted in the drafting of constituent correspondence in response to emails, telephone calls and letters that arrive via the postal service, said Elizabeth H. Cornwell, district director. In addition, they conducted background research on bills pending in the Legislature, helped with the phones and sat in on meetings with community representatives, she said.
Kean said this year's interns were an exceptional group of students that were more than willing to undertake any assignment given to them. “I truly admire the work ethic and motivation shown by every one of our interns. We are fortunate to have such a large group of intelligent young people volunteering their time to work in our busy legislative office,” he added.
Ben Colandrea, of New Providence, who is entering his sophmore year at Fairleigh Dickinson University, had this to say about his experience: “As an intern for Senator Kean, I was able to broaden my understanding of politics in New Jersey while exercising my written and oral communications skills, which is exactly what I set out to accomplish. I am grateful to Senator Kean for this experience.”
Nick Palmer of New Providence, who will be a senior at Delbarton High School, interned last summer and returned for the summer of 2012. “Working with Senator Kean was a great experience. I learned a lot from him and his staff about the legislative process and politics. I’m glad I was a member of his team again this summer,” Palmer said.
The youngest member of this summer’s intern team, Dylan Camche of Livingston, entering his sophomore year at Livingston High School, had this to say: “After several years of participating on the campaign trail, I was able to experience the government part of politics with Senator Kean. Being able to be on this end of the spectrum enhanced my understanding of the political realm, as I handled constituent correspondence, legislative research and assisted in special projects. My experience with the Senator and his staff has opened my eyes even wider in looking at what I desire to pursue in my future,” he said.
Students interested in interning next summer should apply to Kean's office
Resumes of students interested in interning during the summer of 2013 should be emailed to email@example.com anytime from January 1 to March 1, 2013.
Other interns this year included Chloe Nouvelle of Somerset, a senior at The College of New Jersey, and James. S. White Jr. of Warren, a senior at College of the Holy Cross.