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Junior Noah Goldstein (Barrington, R.I.) is among a handful of Lafayette students gaining an intensive political education in the nation’s capital this semester.

Through the American Politics track of the Washington Semester Program at American University, Goldstein is learning directly from political insiders and scholars in courses and through first-hand experience outside the classroom.

A government and law major, Goldstein spends two days each week interning for Senator Jack Reed, a Democrat who represents his home state of Rhode Island.

“Since Rhode Island is the smallest state in the country, Senator Reed’s office is smaller than other senator’s offices,” he says. “My responsibilities range from completing administrative duties, to working with staff in responding to constituent mail, to contributing to the development of legislation by performing research.”

Goldstein’s research has encompassed issues such as tax incentives for U.S. corporations with overseas operations and the possibility of implementing a policy to allow respiratory therapists to be reimbursed for their services to Medicare recipients as skilled nurses are.

He also has worked with the press department to write op-ed pieces and conduct research on the effectiveness of press releases about grants obtained with the senator’s help.

“Overall, the internship has afforded me the opportunity to have a front-row seat to the legislative process and public service, areas that have always been of interest to me,” says Goldstein.

“My first two years of study at Lafayette have helped me develop curiosity for many of the issues that are dealt with at the Washington Semester American Politics program,” he adds. “While I have tremendously valued the program here in D.C., I also have a deeper appreciation for academics at Lafayette.”

In his classes, Goldstein hears from several guest lecturers each week, including scholars, politicians, lobbyists, and other figures in the Washington political scene. Topics have included political parties and elections, the presidency, American foreign policy, Congress, the Supreme Court, tax and welfare reform, and ethics.

“It has been particularly interesting to participate in the Washington Semester this fall because issues and events such as the debate over war in Iraq, the November mid-term elections, and the anniversary of September 11th have served as powerful backdrops to our discussions and seminars,” notes Goldstein.

Goldstein has continued serving as an editorial assistant for the spring issue of Israel Studies Forum, an interdisciplinary journal edited by Ilan Peleg, Charles A. Dana Professor of Government and Law at Lafayette. This summer under Peleg’s guidance, Goldstein examined the foreign policy of Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and gathered material for an upcoming book through Lafayette’s EXCEL Scholars program, in which students assist faculty with research while earning a stipend. He also served a summer internship at FOX News Channel in New York.

Goldstein has interned with the Rhode Island Department of the Attorney General and served as an extern for Salomon Smith Barney Inc. as part of Lafayette’s Alumni Externship Program. He is a member of Lafayette’s Kirby Government and Law Society and Hillel Society, an organization that serves Jewish students and faculty by providing a variety of religious, cultural, and social events. Before spending the semester in Washington, Goldstein was a news reporter and copy editor for The Lafayette. He has served as a delegate for Lafayette Leadership Council, hosted prospective students, and volunteered with Lafayette’s Landis Community Outreach Center.

Junior Simmone Chaddan (Springfield, Mass.), a double major in English and government and law, is enrolled in the Washington Semeter’s Women and Public Policy track. She is serving an internship with the United States Chamber of Commerce and its new Access America program, which works to gain partnership, opportunity, and capital for women- and minority-owned businesses. Launched this summer, Access is led by Reta J. Lewis, former director of political affairs in the Clinton Administration.

Junior Meghan Oakley (Newton, N.J.), a religion and politics major, is in the Transforming Communities (community development and social policy) track, interning in the public policy department of the Volunteers of America national office in Alexandria, Va. Her work focuses on affordable housing legislation and substance abuse policy.

In addition, senior Deborah Rhebergen (Hopewell, N.J.), a government and law major, is taking American Politics, while senior Alvin Lyte (Jamaica, N.Y.), an economics and business major, is enrolled in Economic Policy.

Categorized in: Academic News