West Virginia State University Students Selected for Prestigious Internships

Contact: Kimberly Osborne
(304) 766-3363
Dec. 19, 2013
West Virginia State University Students Selected for Prestigious Internships

INSTITUTE, W.Va. – Three West Virginia State University (WVSU) students will soon be learning outside the classroom as they take part in two competitive internship programs.

WVSU student Cheryl Ann Laws has been awarded a prestigious Judith A. Herndon Fellowship for the 2014 session of the West Virginia Legislature, while students Amber Teel and Tacy Wright have been selected to complete internships with the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC) during the upcoming spring 2014 semester.

The Herndon Fellowship is a competitive internship sponsored by the Legislature to instruct full-time undergraduate students in the theory and operation of legislative bodies. Only 10 students are selected for fellowships each legislative session. Students from every public college and university in West Virginia, as well as students from all but one in-state private college, apply to participate in the program.

“I am really looking forward to learning the ins and outs of the legislative process,” said Laws, a non-traditional student studying to receive a Regents Bachelor of Arts degree at WVSU. “I hope to be a lobbyist one day, advocating to protect children, especially those who come from poverty and abuse.”

Laws currently serves as a Court Appointed Special Advocate Volunteer for children who are placed in the foster care system due to the abuse and neglect of their parents. Laws will be assigned to Senate Majority Leader John Unger II, D-Berkeley, for the upcoming legislative session. Following the conclusion of the session, Herndon Fellows are assigned to various legislative, judicial or executive positions for the duration of their 16-week appointments.

WVSU Criminal Justice major Amber Teel and Political Science major Tacy Wright were chosen to complete semester-long internships with the HEPC beginning in January.

The HEPC is responsible for developing, establishing and overseeing the implementation of a public policy agenda for the state's four-year colleges and universities. It is charged with oversight of higher education institutions to ensure they are accomplishing their missions and implementing the provisions set by state statute.

“I am grateful to have such an opportunity presented to me. I am also optimistic about my future because of the network WVSU has helped me obtain,” Wright said. “My goals are to be an ideal intern, help keep high university standards, to continue to network, and hopefully help myself become gainfully employed.”

Teel said, “I am honored and excited that they picked me for the internship. I am actually feeling nervous because I really want to do a good job. I expect to learn a lot from this experience and can't wait to start.”

The HPEC includes the following divisions: Academic Affairs; Administrative Services; Chancellor’s Office; Finance and Facilities; Financial Aid; Health Sciences; Human Resources; Legal Services; Policy and Planning; Science and Research; and Student Success and P-20 Initiatives. Wright and Teel will assist the HEPC in a variety of areas.  

Follow West Virginia State University on Facebook and Twitter @WVStateU.

West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multi-generational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service, and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.
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