Intern Spotlight Section

Summer 2018




John Woodward

1. Name: John Woodward

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Freshman at Amherst College. Intended majors: (Law, Jurisprudence, and Social Thought), economics, and history (triple major)

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
After having interned for a Senator in D.C. for 2-3 months in his D.C. office this spring, I was motivated to spend my summer time working in the home district. Because I knew that district offices mainly worked on local outreach initiatives, civil case work, and media engagement, I wanted another opportunity to, even if just an intern, work again in the political sphere, and specifically help the people of my hometown.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to attend college for the first time this fall, and am considering applying for another congressional internship on the Hill next summer, specifically the Senate/House Appropriations Committees or the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. I plan to stay politically active during my college tenure and will try to work for certain entities, perhaps even a Think Tank that will best meet my political interests.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I think the best part about working at a district office is working with a small group of highly engaged people, each focused on helping a specific demographic: the proud people of the 28th District.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I like reading, playing video games, and to dabble in a historical research initiative that I like to recreationally invest in.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I attended Laredo Early College High School and ultimately graduated from Phillips Exeter Academy in NH.



Natalia Boyd


1. Name:
Natalia Boyd

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a rising high school senior at Boerne Samuel V. Champion in Boerne, Texas, and I thoroughly enjoy studying History and English. Currently, I serve as co-captain of the debate team and president of the National Spanish Honor Society.


3. Hometown and current residence

I was born and raised in Laredo and currently reside in Boerne, Texas.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

While I have always been drawn to the inner workings of our democracy, in recent years I have grown increasingly interested in the work of our representatives and the role they play in foreign and domestic politics. There is no better place to experience such dynamics than the epicenter of all politics-- Washington D.C.


5. What are your plans following this internship?

I am looking forward to finishing my senior year and gaining admission into a university that will best suit my future aspirations. I hope to dedicate myself to public service and to one day affect positive change in the world.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

While my internship has just begun, I have already been delighted to see our Article II representatives in action. The fast-paced work environment is both challenging and intellectually intriguing.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?

I find peace in the outdoors, expressing myself through art, and spending quality time with my family.


8. Anything else you want to share?

This internship has been an absolute blessing for which I am eternally grateful. Having a front row seat to the inner workings of the legislature is a thrilling experience. This opportunity has given me an appreciation for the men and women who work hard for their constituents by coming to the table to do what is best not only for them, but for our country.



Celeste Marie Gomez

1.     Name: Celeste Marie Gomez

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major: Starting first year of college this August  

 

3.     Hometown and current residence: Laredo, Texas

 

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have a great amount of admiration for Congressman Cuellar. What I admire the most is that he goes above and beyond to help his community. I also admire his character and the way he represents the district in D.C. He is a true leader and we couldn’t have a better representative for the 28th District of Texas. 

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

My next step/goal is to continue with my education at Laredo College for my associates and eventually continue with my studies at Texas A&M International University for my bachelors. Once I’ve accomplished that stage of my education I plan to move to a different city and start my own business.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience was working with hard-working individuals. As an intern I assisted answering phone calls to constituents and assisting with walk-ins; I also observed how an office should be handled and how to get the job well done at the end of the day.


7.     What are your hobbies or interests? My hobbies include organizing my personal space. 

 


Josephine Brocato


1. Name: Josie Brocato

2. Year in college, name of college, major:

I will be entering my third year at the University of Virginia. I am majoring in Foreign Affairs in the Politics Department and minoring in Entrepreneurship in the Commerce School.


3. Hometown and current residence:

I am from Alexandria, Virginia and am currently living there with my family. I travel back and forth from Alexandria to Charlottesville, Virginia during the year.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have been very interested in politics and the workings of our American government since high school and I wanted to have the chance to work with a bipartisan Congressman that focused on issues I am interested in.



5. What are your plans following this internship?


After this internship, I plan to return to the University of Virginia in the fall to finish my last two years of college and receive my Bachelors degree. After graduation, I plan on earning a Masters degree in Public Health; subsequent to my studies, I would like to start my career in the Public Health sector.



6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

 
I have learned many professional and life-long skills that have better prepared me for my future. This job has further developed my communication skills as well as my knowledge in the depth of our legislative government branch.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?

 
I enjoy going to the beach and surfing as well as traveling. I will be studying abroad in Florence, Italy during the spring semester to study abroad. I hope to emerge myself in the culture and practice my Italian.


8. Anything else you want to share?

I’ve had an amazing time and I’m so happy to have had this experience.


Ray Thomas

1.      Name

Ray Thomas

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I am currently a sophomore at Texas Christian University majoring in accounting and minoring in environmental science.

3.     Hometown and current residence

I am originally from McAllen, Texas but am currently living in Fort Worth, Texas.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I decided to pursue a congressional internship because I felt that it would give me valuable experience to prepare me for an internship at the US embassy next summer.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

I will be returning to Texas Christian University to complete my degree with hopes of attending law school.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

During my internship I had the opportunity to learn how the legislative process functions in a Congressional office. I also learned how to assist constituents with specific matters.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

During my free time I enjoy playing soccer and basketball, eating, cooking, exploring, and spending time with my dogs.

8.    Anything else you want to share?

I want to thank Congressman Cuellar for allowing me to intern at this office, and for opening many doors for me with the experience I had on Capitol Hill. I also want to thank all the staffers and other interns for being so friendly and welcoming because they are what made the internship such a memorable one.



Cayethania Castillo Diaz

1.     Name

Cayethania Castillo Diaz

 

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major 

I am a Junior at the University of Texas at San Antonio where I'm pursuing a degree in Political Science.

 

3.     Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Dallas, TX and I currently live in San Antonio, TX.

 

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I believed it would be a great opportunity to learn and expand my knowledge on this line of work, as well as be able to meet people who have experience and advice that I could retain for my future endeavors.

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

My plans following this internship include graduating from university and potentially continuing my education through law school or graduate school and putting my skills to use to help people as best as I can.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The most rewarding experience being an intern for Congressman Cuellar has been being able to see what the people behind the scenes do to assist him and the constituents.

 

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? 

My interests revolve around sports and all types of art. I play rugby for UTSA and for the San Antonio Women’s Rugby club. I also draw and paint commissioned art pieces.


Isabela Barrientos

1. Name

Isabela Andrea Barrientos

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I will begin my sophomore year this August at Texas A&M International University and am majoring in Communications and minoring in Political Science.

3. Hometown and current residence

I was born and raised in Laredo, TX, which is also where I currently live.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have always had an interest in legislation and the legislative process. I knew by interning with Congressman Cuellar, I would have the opportunity to observe first-hand the construction of public policy and learn more about how our government directly interacts with and assists its constituents.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

Following this internship, I will return back to my home city, where my university is located, to continue on the path to getting my Bachelor’s degree. I plan to seek more political internships and methods of getting involved in my city’s political delegation. Succeeding the completion of my undergraduate studies, I aim to attend law school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

As a Laredoan, it was extremely intriguing to witness Congressman Cuellar, who is the representative from my own district, directly being involved in implementing and creating policy to better my district’s community. Although, I am only approaching the half way mark of this internship, I have already been able to learn more about the internal processes of domestic policy and formulate a near understanding of the legislative government branch. The knowledge and insight I have gained through my experiences here in D.C. will assist me with my future endeavors of becoming involved in public service.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

Apart from my interests in politics and government, I’ve enjoyed visiting museums during my time here in D.C.. I am also fond of learning about other cultures through trying new foods, reading, watching documentaries and traveling. This is even better when I get to do it with my friends.

8. Anything else you want to share?

I would like to thank Congressman Cuellar and all his staff for giving me the opportunity to grow as a person through my internship here at the House of Representatives. I am eternally grateful to each person for making my experience an unforgettable and valuable one.

John Rutkauskas

1.       Name:
John Rutkauskas

 

2.      Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a junior at Cornell University where I am majoring in Communications and minoring in American Indian and Indigenous Studies.

 

3.      Hometown and current residence

Although I was born in Chicago, I was raised and currently reside in Hinsdale, Illinois.

 

4.      Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

My passions include studying the government and the law. These passions have led me to pursue an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office in order to get a hands on look at the legislative process and to experience life in Washington DC.

 

5.      What are your plans following this internship?

After my internship I will return to Cornell to finish my last two years of my undergraduate degree. Following graduation I hope to pursue a career in law or public service.

 

6.      What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The most rewarding experience so far has been witnessing the legislative process and being so close to the lawmakers that work for change within our federal government. It is inspiring to see members of Congress work diligently to represent and fight for the interests of their constituents.

 

7.      What are your hobbies or interests?

I enjoy golfing with friends, lifting weights, cooking and watching TV shows.

 

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I would like to thank Congressman Cuellar for this opportunity as well as all the hard working staff and fellow interns that have made this an amazing experience for me.



Gabriela Barrera

1.       Name

Gabriela A. Barrera

 

2.       Year in college, name of college, and major

 I am a rising senior at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service where I am majoring International Politics and pursuing a certificate in Jewish Civilization.

 

3.       Hometown and current residence

My hometown is San Antonio, Texas, and I currently reside in Washington, D.C.

 

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

Prior to this summer, I had interned in two separate think tanks. While both were rewarding and informative experiences, I wanted to explore a variation of civic work that offered a more direct connection between public policy goals and implementation.

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

Following this internship, I will be completing both my final year at the School of Foreign Service and my thesis research on political-military affairs. After I graduate, I plan on pursuing a career in public service and am current considering an option in military intelligence.  

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience so far has been to simply be present within the D.C. Congressional Office. I have had the opportunity to learn simply from assisting on or listening to the work that is conducted by the full time staffers. It is fascinating to see how the inception of a project translates into an amendment or legislative act, and I'm grateful to be able to come to this office everyday.

  

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

In my free time, I like to read novels (especially science fiction) and write short fiction. In addition, since I'm not taking any summer classes, I've been using the extra time to study the Russian language. On the weekends I like to visit art museums, and if the weather is not too hot, I like to bike around the National Mall and on the DC Trails. 

 

8.     Anything else you want to share?

 I have a dog named Scooby and one day I dream of owning a farm in Texas. 


Annie Teer

1. Name: Annie Teer

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:

I am a rising junior at the University of Texas at Austin where I am majoring in Social Work -- Hook ‘em!

3. Hometown and current residence:

My hometown is Southlake, Texas, but Austin has quickly become my home.



4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I wanted to work for someone that represents my home state on the national level. As well, I was raised on political discussions and have always been interested in public policy, so getting to see it up close and personal has always been a dream of mine.

 

5. What are your plans following this internship?

Following my time here this summer in D.C., I will return to UT to start my junior year.

 

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Although I just started my internship, I know this is a once in a lifetime opportunity to participate in the function of a Congressional Office. Through this internship I am learning how Congress works from the inside.

 

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

I love to volunteer with kids, and I also love watching Netflix, traveling, and eating good food.

 

8. Anything else you want to share?

I want to thank Congressman Cuellar and everyone here in the DC office for this opportunity, and for being so kind and welcoming.



Sofia Bonilla



1. Name: 
Sofia Bonilla

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in May 2018. I majored in International Relations & Global Studies Honors, Plan II Honors, and Spanish.


3. Hometown and current residence:
My hometown is Austin, Texas, and I now live in Washington D.C.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Growing up, I have always wanted to learn more about the inner workings of Capitol Hill. As an International Relations major, I studied U.S. politics in a global context. This internship has allowed me to shift my focus to domestic policy and the unique sociopolitical characteristics of South Texas.


5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to work in the Washington D.C. area for the next two years. Afterwards, my goal is to attend law school.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
While interning in Congressman Cuellar’s office, I have learned that every position on the Hill is an important one. Each intern and staff member play an essential role in keeping the interests of the Congressman’s constituents at the forefront of his agenda. It is truly inspiring to watch the Congressman and his staff work as a unit, and I feel honored to be able to contribute to the Congressman’s mission.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love to play soccer, both competitively and recreationaly, read short stories, go swimming, and visit museums.


8. Anything else you want to share?
Lastly, I would like to thank the Congressman and his staff for welcoming me to the Hill. I am grateful to have learned so much about policy, teamwork, and communication during my time in the Congressman’s office.

Marisa Nowicki

1.       Name: Marisa Nowicki


2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a Master’s Candidate in Public Policy and Management (MSPPM) with a focus in International Trade and Development at Carnegie Mellon University. As part of CMU’s Global Track, I completed my first year of study in Adelaide, Australia and will begin my final year this August at their main campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


3.     Hometown and current residence

Although I am no longer living there, I still consider McKinney, Texas to be my home. I plan to relocate next year to pursue my career. 

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

The Hill is a fascinating, fast-paced work environment. Each day brings new challenges and presents opportunities for personal and professional growth. I pursued an internship with this office to improve my understanding of the interworking of the government and investigate possible career tracks within it.
 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

Following this internship, I will complete my Master’s degree at Carnegie Mellon’s main campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Upon graduation, I will seek employment related to my area of study. My options include government and non-governmental organizations in Washington DC.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Congressman Cuellar’s office emphasizes the importance of valuing constituent input. The most rewarding experience I have had with this office thus far was hearing a constituent thanking us our kindness and listening to their concerns. It is vital that constituents feel heard and respected by their representatives.  

 

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

Outside of work, I am an avid hiker, a bookworm, and a competitive dancer.


8.     Anything else you want to share?

I am grateful to Congressman Cuellar’s office for this wonderful opportunity. Throughout this experience I have gained with this office has greatly influenced my career interests and taught me about potential career paths. I would strongly encourage students interested in public policy to consider interning with this office.

Samantha Knaggs



1.     Name:
Samantha Knaggs


2.     Year in college, name of college, and major:
   
I am currently a junior at American University in Washington D.C. with dual majors in History and International Studies with a thematic focus on identity conflicts and a regional focus on sub-Saharan Africa.

3.     Hometown and current residence
   
I was born and raised in Austin, Texas, but I am currently living in Washington, D.C.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

   
I decided to pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office because of my pension for public service and learning about the governmental process. I was also intrigued by how the legislative branch incorporates our international allegiances with foreign nations and interest groups.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?
 
   Following this internship, I will spend my fall semester abroad in Nairobi, Kenya where I will be participating in an internship with a local non-profit organization and studying the social and historical development of Kenya.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
   
As an intern for Congressman Cuellar, the most rewarding experience so far has been the opportunity to participate in the dynamics of the office and in the U.S. House of Representatives in general. Furthermore, the experience I will have gained concerning the legislative process and diplomacy will not only continue to serve me in the professional realm, but even in my daily life.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?
   
I am fixated on travel - the opportunity to learn and experience new things in order to widen my perspective. I also have a strong passion for the environment and being outdoors. In my free time I enjoy hiking, biking, swimming, yoga, photography - and when I am able to, scuba diving.

8.     Anything else you want to share?
  
  I just want to express my gratitude to Congressman Cuellar and his staff for the guidance they have so graciously given me and for the opportunity to learn from their D.C. office.

 
Virginia Hernandez

Name- Virginia Hernandez

Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a senior at University of Texas at San Antonio. I am currently studying Kinesiology with a concentration in athletic medicine.

Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Laredo Texas. I am currently residing in Laredo Texas for the summer but spend most of the year in San Antonio, Texas.

Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I was interested in interning with Congressman Cuellar because I wanted to become a more knowledgeable of legislative processes, politics, casework, and to have real hands on experience that will benefit me in my future endeavors. I also understood this would be a great opportunity to improve my understanding of the political challenges that are upon the border of Texas, which includes my hometown. I also believe this internship give me a competitive edge as a student.

What are your plans following this internship?

After this internship, I will be completing my last year for my undergraduate degree. I will be working on campus as mentor and participating in extracurricular activities. I plan to apply to law schools this coming fall and hopefully be admitted for the fall of 2019.

 

What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

This being my first internship in the political or legal field, I have become more aware of how policies and laws affect people, some more than others. I learned to appreciate the work that is done by the Congressman Cuellar and his staff, they truly aim to help others and be the voice for the people along the border. I learned that this career pathway can be very rewarding, knowing that you are able to contribute to the community. I’ve only started my internship, but I know I will learn something new every day that I come in to the office.

 

What are your hobbies or interests?

I enjoy traveling, fitness, and outdoor activities. My favorite thing to talk about is food, I really enjoy trying local restaurants and trying new foods and pastries.

 

Anything else you want to share?

I would like to thank Congressman Cuellar for this amazing opportunity to work with him and to have the chance to work with such passionate and kind hearted staff in the Laredo office.

 

David Rivero



Name-
David Rivero

Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a junior at Texas Tech University double majoring in marketing and management and double minoring in political science and Spanish

Hometown and current residence

I call Lovington, New Mexico home, but currently reside in Lubbock, Texas

 

Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

For as long as I can remember I have always had an interest in public service. I not only wanted to see the legislative process in action, but also have a more hands on experience.

 

What are your plans following this internship?

In the fall, I will be returning to Texas Tech University to complete my degree plan.

What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Though my internship hasn’t come to an end, this opportunity has given me a glimpse of fully understanding our government and its procedures. Additionally, this congressional internship has shined a light on a new interest, allowing me to learn more about how federal policy is formulated in our nation’s capital by observing and contributing to the legislative processes. My overall experience will serve as the precedence for my future goals and aspirations, and will also have a lasting impact on my view of public service.

What are your hobbies or interests?

Aside from the political realm, I enjoy golf, watching movies, traveling, trying new foods, and spending quality time with friends.

Anything else you want to share?

I would first like to take the time to thank the Government and Public Service Internship Program through Texas Tech University for affording me the opportunity to spend a summer in our nation’s capital. Furthermore, I would like to give a special thanks to Congressman Cuellar and the rest of the staff for making my time here in D.C. a worthwhile and memorable experience.


Miriam Garcia

1.     Name: Miriam Garcia

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I am currently a junior at the University of North Texas majoring in Economics with a minor in Business.

3.     Hometown and current residence

I am an El Paso Native, but I currently live in Denton, Texas.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

My goal here is to get a direct insight of what it is like to work in a congressional office and to enhance my portfolio by adding a prestigious internship. Working at Congressman Cuellar’s office has been a big step towards being submerged into the field of politics and governmental affairs.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

Starting in September, I will be studying abroad for an academic year in the United Kingdom; I will be attending a university just 35 minutes southwest of central London. After my year abroad, I intend to continue my studies in the field of economics and then decide my future career path from there.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Throughout my internship, I have learned the ins and outs of the colossal monuments and historical structures (such as the Capitol). I’ve gained insight on how legislation takes place and what Congress takes into account when voting for or against a bill.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

I do a lot of side research on everyday topics relating to economics and international affairs. I love to travel on my leisure time. I also do a lot of photography work, especially travel photography and portraits.

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I would like to first and foremost thank the NTDC program at the University of North Texas for granting me the phenomenal opportunity of being an intern in our nation’s capital. I would also like to thank my mentors and mentees in the office that have shown me what it takes to thrive on Capitol Hill.

 


Spring 2018 
Amanda Rodriguez

1. Name: Amanda Rodriguez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I recently graduated from Georgetown Law Center and hold a BA in political science and English from Texas A&M International University.

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in Laredo, TX and now live in Houston, TX.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
As a native Laredoan, I am constantly looking for the opportunity to give back to my community. Working for Congressman Cuellar was an excellent opportunity for me to apply my legal skills to current issues that the community of Laredo, and District 18, are faced with.


5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will be working for a non-governmental organization where I will be representing unaccompanied minors facing deportation.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have gained a better understanding of the role that lawyers play within the legislative branch. I have also been able to enhance my research and writing skills by working on array of legislative issues.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?
 
In my spare time, I enjoy cooking and experimenting with new cuisine. I am also an avid runner and enjoy participating in local races.


8. Anything else you want to share?
I would like to thank the office of Congressman Henry Cuellar for providing me with the opportunity to enhance my legal skills while simultaneously contributing toward the advancement of my hometown and the state of Texas. I would also like to thank Georgetown University Law Center for providing its students with the opportunity to participate in internships throughout the academic year.


Emily Feist

1. Name: Emily Feist

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
I recently graduated from Texas State University with a Bachelor’s Degree in International Studies- International Relations.

3. Hometown and current residence:
I call George West, TX home but currently live in Washington D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I decided to pursue this internship with Congressman Cuellar, because I have always been interested in public service as well as learning about the processes of our government. I was also interested in observing how Congress bolsters its relationships with its international partners through legislation and diplomacy.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am planning to move back to and work in Texas to be near my family for some time. In the near future, I plan on pursuing a job in the field of communications or government in Central America or Europe.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
As an intern in the House of Representatives, I have enjoyed working in such a fast-paced and dynamic environment. I am learning that in this type of environment it is necessary to think quickly on your feet and to keep a professional composure at all times. I also have learned so much about the legislative process, and the process in which positive change can be made in the district by constituents and organizations speaking and organizing with their Representative. I can proudly say that I have also heightened my sense of direction by learning to navigate through the maze we also know as the House of Representatives. 

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy traveling to and living in different countries, spending time with my family and friends, photography, watching movies, trying new and exotic foods, and keeping up with international affairs.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I would like to thank Congressman Cuellar for this amazing opportunity to work with him and his amazing D.C. staff in the House of Representatives.

Peter Villa


1. Name:
Peter Villa


2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior , Texas A&M international University, Political Science


3. Hometown and current residence
Born in San Antonio, however I was raised in Laredo, Texas.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Politics has always been a passion of mine and learning from experts in college is great, however I strongly believe that to truly understand the issues in our district and around the nation I needed to be where the actions at. Congressman Cuellar’s office gave me the opportunity to
witness these things first hand.


5. What are your plans following this internship?
After I finish my last semester at TAMIU, I hope to continue to find ways to serve the citizens of Webb County.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
It was refreshing to learn that there are still great people in government, Congressman Cuellar’s staff always goes above and beyond for our constituents. I also learned so much from every single person that came into the office. It allowed me to understand more in depth the issues that I usually only get to read about in the newspaper.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my free time I like to read as many books as I can, I believe that understanding other people’s viewpoints on a subject that I might agree or disagree on is paramount in the continuation of growing one’s self.


8. Anything else you want to share?

I just want to say thank you to all the staff here in the Laredo office and throughout the district as well as D.C who were nothing but helpful and welcoming to me. I appreciate your patience and advice.



Jonna "Jo" Hewitt

1. Name
Jonna “Jo” Hewitt

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I’m a junior at Texas Tech University studying Communications with minors in Political Science and Legal
Studies.

3. Hometown and current residence
I’m originally from Waco, TX and am currently living in Washington, D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to participate in a congressional internship because it was a chance to see real, unfiltered public service processes at their highest capacity. Additionally, I was excited by the opportunity to represent myself and Texas Tech in such a culturally diverse and interesting place as Washington, D.C.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
This summer, I’ll be participating in a Pre-Law Academy at Texas Tech. Afterward, I plan to complete my undergraduate degree, possibly attend Law or Graduate school, and secure a career in the public sector.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
As an intern in Congressman Cuellar’s office, I learned a lot about law-making, the history and current state of the U.S. government, and standard office procedures. I also learned that I enjoy an active work environment that involves making quick and careful decisions.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my free time, I love to read, write, dance, watch baseball, and study film and television.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am so grateful to Congressman Cuellar and his staff, both in the D.C. and TX-28 offices, for the opportunity to learn some of the intricacies of serving a congressional district. This semester has been so much fun and a valuable learning experience.



Susana Barraza


1.     Name

Susana Barraza

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I’m currently a junior at the California State University of Sacramento pursing a Bachelor of Arts in Economics.

3.     Hometown and current residence

Sacramento, California

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

As part of the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute, Congressman Cuellar has been a pillar of the Hispanic community and a supporter of the Global Leaders Program, and I was fortunate to intern in his office.

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

Following my internship, I plan to return home to complete my last two semesters of undergrad. I hope to apply for graduate school in the upcoming semester for Fall of 2019. My goal is to be admitted to the University of Southern California, where I intend to pursue a Masters in Education. I plan to return home with a broadened perspective on the political process in relation to issues that affect my community. As I was captivated by the impact economics plays in issues such as poverty, disenfranchisement, and people's overall welfare, I hope to bring awareness within those in my community and at the state and national level.

I’m working towards the day that my influence improves education policy.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Working on Laredo Day was one of my most treasured moments on Capitol Hill. This event really helped me connect with the 28th district of Texas and his dedication to the Latino experience. While California and Texas are to very different states, Congressman Cuellar’s dedication to Latino advocacy has created a special place in my heart for Texas.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

I love sunny days at the beach. I enjoy activities such as hiking, jet skiing, and swimming. I love learning about my Hispanic/Latino culture and traveling to Central America!

 

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I hope to one day represent my Sacramento community as an elected member of Congress.



Jesus Balderas Jr.
 

1.     Name


Jesus Balderas Jr.

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a senior at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley majoring in Political Science with a minor in Legal Studies.

3.     Hometown and current residence

I was born and raised in Rio Grande City, Texas where I currently reside.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have always been interested in the political/legislative process and saw this as a phenomenal opportunity to experience it first-hand. I have studied the legislative process extensively and have followed Congressman Cuellar’s career as a U.S. Representative. Therefore, when the opportunity for an internship at his Mission Office arose, I knew I had to seize upon it.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

Following this internship, I will hopefully land a job at a law firm where I will gain some legal experience before embarking onto law school.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

There is more than meets the eye interning for the Office of Congressman Henry Cuellar.  It is much more than just assisting in the office or attending events. Interning in this office has further enhanced my communication skills and professionalism. Talking with the many constituents that call or walk into this office has opened my eyes that there are more than just press conferences and meetings for Congressman Cuellar. Congressman Cuellar makes it a priority to assist his constituents to the best of his ability. I have seen the dedication and excellent work the staff in this office has done regarding constituent service.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

One of my greatest hobbies is watching and playing baseball. I am a baseball fanatic. When I am not watching baseball, I am as one of my Professors calls me, “A Constitutional Law geek”. I enjoy reading Supreme Court opinions and keeping up to date with current cases.

8.     Anything else you want to share?

Interning in this office has been one of the best moments of my life. The people I have met have been extraordinary and I look forward to potentially working with them in the future if I ever decide to pursue a career in politics.


Matthew Torgerson

1.     Name

Matthew Torgerson

 

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

Sophomore at UTSA,  Political Science Major

 

3.     Hometown and current residence.

I was born and raised in San Antonio.

 

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I decided to pursue the internship to get a first-hand experience working for the federal government as well as my city, San Antonio.

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

My plans are to attend law school and become a practicing attorney.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience has been handling case work and helping constituents as much as I can.

 

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? 

My interests include playing my guitar, collecting retro video games, and keeping up with U.S. politics. I play in the UTSA orchestra as a violist and I enjoy playing in a band with my friends.

 

Wyatt Covarrubias

1.     Name

Wyatt Covarrubias

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I am currently an early senior at the University of North Texas. I study political science.

 

3.     Hometown and current residence

I was born and raised in Abilene, Texas. I currently live in Denton, Texas.

 

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have developed a true passion for politics during my college career. I had a strong desire to strengthen my conceptional knowledge of politics by learning more about the legislative process first hand.

 

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

After this internship, I will continue my college career by entering law school. I wish to go to the University of Texas. In addition to pursuing my J.D. Also, I am going to pursue a MPA.

 

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have learned a great deal about how to effectively research legislative issues. In addition, I have also learned how to synthesize this information and provide a statement accordingly. Lastly, I have also learned more about the legislative process by learning what factors a Congressman considers when voting on legislation.

 

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

I am a member of the University of North Texas’ Moot Court team. This organization is similar to debate, however it centers around arguing constitutional law. Every year, a hypothetical case will be given out to all participating organizations. These cases generally revolve around a hot topic issue. For instance, in 2016 the issue involved voter ID laws, which coincided with the voter ID cases that were salient during that time.

 

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I want to thank the office and the University of North Texas’ NTDC program for giving the opportunity to intern in Washington D.C. This internship is a fantastic experience that has surely benefited my learning experience and will certainly benefit me in my future endeavors.

Apolinar Abonza

1.     Name

Apolinar Abonza

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

I graduated from the University of Houston in December of 2017 with a Bachelors in Arts in Political Science and a Minor in Mexican American Studies.

3.     Hometown and current residence

Houston, TX.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I wanted to get more involved in Federal politics, learn more about the legislative process, and gain more experience in public service.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

I plan on going back to Texas to get involved in state and local politics.  I am undecided as of now, but I do plan on going back to school in about a year to get a Masters in public policy or attend law school.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have learned that the legislative process is a very lengthy one.  There is a long process before a bill can become law, and sometimes it will not even be considered if it cannot pass committee.  The most rewarding experience is getting the chance to attend many different committees and learning about various issues that Congress face.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

In my free time I like to do research on issues I love, go to museums, go on walks to the park, and although I don’t have much time anymore I do enjoy playing a good videogame from time to time.

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I want to thank the office and the University of Houston’s Hobby School of Public Affairs for allowing me to take the opportunity in working in a congressional office.  The experience has been rewarding and has taught me a lot about government and public service.  I hope to use the skills I learned while working here to serve my community.

Seven Flores
1. Name
Seven Flores

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Class of 2017, Texas A&M International University, Psychology/ Biology minor

3. Hometown and current residence
Hometown: Monterrey, Mexico. Current: Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I decided to intern with the office of Congressman Cuellar’s office to serve my community at the congressional level and enhance my understanding of how our federal government works.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

I will work as a teacher in Massachusetts, under Teach For America, while working on my teaching certificate and Masters of Education at Boston University.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
As someone who has visited, called and written to congressional offices over the past years, it has been both interesting and rewarding to be on “the other side” of our democratic process. I now feel more confident in my abilities to bring change to my community.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy reading, jogging and being involved in both politics and community advocacy. My interests are education, tutoring/teaching, research, environmental policy, politics and community advocacy.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am beyond thankful and honored for this opportunity that not only enables me to serve my community but also provides me with an enriching learning experience that I will use for my future endeavors.



Fall 2017

Yesenia Escobedo
1. Name
Yesenia Escobedo

2. Year in college, name of college, and major.
Senior at Texas A&M International, member of the Bachelors/Master’s program: B.A Political Science, M.A History Political Thought, and as a Dual B.S major in Systems Engineering

3. Hometown and current residence.
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
As a Political Advocate I aspire to aid constituents, and there’s no better place to know what concerns them than in the office of Congressman Henry Cuellar.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plans after this internship is to continue networking with those who represent the City of Laredo in and out of the state, and as well to continue spreading political awareness.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

As an intern, I have dug deeper into how processes are carried out, and what areas require more attention. My most rewarding experience has been listening to constituents, and thus being able to provide them with answers.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I own an online business with multiple partners throughout the nation, I as well serve as the Vice President of the Society of Women Engineers , serve as an active member of the Political Action committee for the Student Government, and service time for the Laredo Non-profit Dreamcourt initiative. In my down time I read personal development book, exercise regularly, and travel the world with friends and family.

8. Anything else you want to share?

“Life's true gift lies in your freedom to design it beautifully. With each rise of the sun, you get to chase the opportunity to fill your days with meaning.”


Summer 2017

Victoria Segundo - Mission District Office


1. Name
Victoria Andrea Segundo (Tori)

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently a Senior at the University of Texas- Rio Grande Valley, majoring in Criminal Justice.

3. Hometown and current residence
Mission, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
As a Criminal Justice major, we study the judicial branch of the government. Take this internship would give more of incite of how the legislative branch works. Also with wanting to attend law school, this opportunity gave me the chance to work with people of my community and assist them, which is what I plan to do after law school as an attorney.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following this internship, I plan to graduate in December of 2017 and attend a Texas Law School in the Fall of 2018.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
With working in this office I have learned about all the different ways the Congressman’s offices can help our community with. It was been rewarding to see how much the people of this office care for our community and drive they have in order to help everyone they come across.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Aside from working, I enjoy hanging out with my sister, dancing, and traveling the world.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am very thankful for this opportunity to work for Congressman Henry Cuellar. Thank you.




Daniel Gomez - San Antonio District Office
1. Name
Daniel Gomez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at The University of Texas San Antonio, Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
Edinburg, Texas; San Antonio, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
To gain an understanding of how our government operates and what it’s like to be a public servant.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
To finish my senior year at UTSA and eventually look for a job related to politics.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I’ve learned that it takes a lot of work and cooperation to bring change to those who have problems that our office is responsible to fix.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Music has always been a big part of my life. All through middle school and high school I was in orchestra, and joined my school’s mariachi band in high school. My main hobby would be collecting vinyl records.

8. Anything else you want to share?
It is an honor and a privilege to have this opportunity to intern under Congressman Cuellar to bring change to the people of San Antonio.




Nicholas Cuellar - Mission District Office
1. Name
Nicholas Cuellar

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I’m a rising senior at Texas A&M University and majoring in Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in McAllen, Texas and I currently reside in College Station, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I’ve always had an interest in politics and public service and majoring in political science energized me to seek out this internship with my local Congressman so I can truly get first-hand experience on how a district office operates for a Congressman. I’ve always looked up to Congressman Henry Cuellar because I truly believe he voices our needs in Washington especially serving on the powerful appropriations committee.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I’ll finish up my senior year at Texas A&M and then hopefully land a job for a couple years to gain some experience in the workforce and then eventually go to law school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned that the true importance of working in the district office is serving the constituents. I’ve learned how to handle and deal with local constituents and all the resources we have in our Mission office that we use to help assist them. I’ve also enhanced my speaking skills when talking to many constituents on the phone and in person. I’ve also learned the significance of team work in the office when working with Nichole and Allen.

7. What are your hobbies and interests?
I’m in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M so I enjoy the military lifestyle while focusing on my studies. On my down time, I watch a lot of sports, hang out with my friends and enjoy reading. Most importantly I enjoy going to Texas A&M football games every Saturday.

8. Anything else you want to share?
It was an honor interning for Congressman Henry Cuellar’s office in Mission. I learned many things that can help me out in the remanding of my undergrad which can get me a step closer to my future career in law and potentially politics.




Ricardo Calderon - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Ricardo Calderon

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Junior, the University of Texas at Austin, Economics

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, TX and Austin, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will graduate with a BA, then pursue a master’s degree (do not know in what focus).

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I’ve realized that there is a lot more going on in the world than what meets the eye. I have a newfound respect for the staff and members of Congress because of how much they handle throughout the day.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Foreign policy, trade, and marketing.

8. Anything else you want to share?
This internship has been a great opportunity for me and I appreciate everyone that I worked with. I learned a great deal pertaining to politics and the US government.





Gabriella Rendon - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name:
Gabriella R. Rendón

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I will be a junior this upcoming year. I attend the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio, TX. I am majoring in Community Health with a minor in Psychology and Nutrition.

3. Hometown and current residence.
I am from Corpus Christi, Texas, but currently reside in San Antonio, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I am studying community health policy at UIW in San Antonio, TX, so I wanted a firsthand look at how healthcare policy decisions are made. Congressman Cuellar has been a fierce leader on this issue since his time in the Texas State House where he co-authored the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, and I knew working in his office would be the best fit. I also wanted to learn more about our political process.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following this internship, I will return back to San Antonio to continue my studies at UIW and graduate in 2019.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
One of the greatest things I’ve learned so far is how members of Congress reach their decisions for federal spending. I had the chance to sit in a committee budget markup with the Congressman and listened as he and the other representatives debated funding levels for various government programs. Additionally, I learned a lot of history about our U.S. Capitol. One of my responsibilities as an intern is to greet the Congressman’s constituents and lead them on a tour of the Capitol building. I’ve enjoyed meeting new people every day.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I have a few hobbies which include: watching movies, working out, playing golf, and going to different restaurants to try new foods.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I had a great time doing this internship and I would like to thank Congressman Cuellar for allowing me to work in his D.C. office for the summer.




Alexis Garcia - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Alexis Catarina Garcia

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I will be a senior this upcoming year. I am attending Marymount Manhattan College, and double majoring in Political Science and International Studies with a minor in Psychology.

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in Austin, Texas but currently, live in New York City.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Congressman Cuellar is a hardworking congressman that always provides for his district. I wanted to have experience working on the hill especially in an office that fast paced and actively working on legislation.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am looking forward to finishing my degree this upcoming school year. I am also excited to serve on my college’s Student Government Association as President for the 2017-2018 academic year.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have learned quite a lot working for Congressman Cuellar. I am most appreciative of learning how the process works, whether it may be passing an amendment or drafting letters to constituents about important issues. It has been incredibly rewarding to do work for the office and see the benefit of that work manifest.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I go through phases when it comes to hobbies. Lately, I have taken an interested to origami, paper cranes specifically.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Working for this office has been a great deal of fun and I have enjoyed working in our nation’s capital. I would like to thank the congressman for this amazing opportunity.




Maureen Rendon - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Maureen Anali Rendon

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Incoming Freshman, Southwestern University, double major in Music and International Studies

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I am really interested in pursuing a career in government or Foreign Affairs. This experience could give me more insight on what it is like to be in a government office.


5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will be attending Southwestern in the Fall, join the Hispanic Organization on campus, and hopefully be involved in student government. If this internship goes well, the Career and Services Office at Southwestern will be assisting me during the process of going to D.C. to intern in Congressman Cuellar’s office in the summer of 2018. After graduating college, I would love to attend the Keough School of Global Affairs at the University of Notre Dame.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Although it has only been my first day, I have really enjoyed taking calls from people who need assistance and have enjoyed interacting with staff members.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I am a pianist. I love to travel, especially throughout Mexico; interacting with people and experiencing the culture I grew up in is always heartwarming—especially when I get to have a deep impact in their lives through serving them. I love to read, run, sing at church, serve on retreats, and hang out with my seven best friends.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am excited to learn new things and I am willing to push myself to give my best work at the office.




Ryan Raymond - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Ryan Raymond

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at McCallum High School

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas/Austin, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to get the great experience of working on Capitol Hill, and I thought it would be really neat to also get to work for a Laredo native. Also, I wanted to be more knowledgeable on current events related to politics.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to go back to Austin and work as a lifeguard. I also am going to be working on my college applications and try to narrow down my best choices for schools.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
My most rewarding experience was being able to give Congressman Cuellars constituents tours of the Capitol, especially because most of them were from Laredo. As an intern, I learned about how much research goes into each decision Congressman Cuellar, from the intern level to the staff level.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My main hobby is my instrument Double Bass, and a close second is being the biggest Dallas Cowboys fan in the state of Texas.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I'd like to thank Congressman Cuellar for letting me have this amazing experience, and thanks to all the awesome staffers and interns that I had the opportunity to work with.





Iesha Daboya - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Iesha Daboya

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a graduate of the University of North Texas. Go Mean Green!

3. Hometown and current residence
Houston, TX and Washington, D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I have an interest in politics and I want to work on the communications side of government. This office has provided me with helpful and insightful knowledge in the field.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan on obtaining a full-time opportunity here in Washington, D.C. on or off the Hill.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding portion of the internship is working with the Communications Director, Victoria Glynn, and fully understanding political communications.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies are watching movies/tv shows, reading, talking to friend/family, and going to brunch




Eloy Fierro - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Eloy Fierro

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a Junior at Texas A&M University; I am majoring in International Studies with a track in Politics & Diplomacy as well as double minoring in History and Spanish.

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in Laredo, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Throughout the course of my undergraduate studies at Texas A&M University, I have come to develop an underlying passion for civic engagement as well as Latin American political structure. With the aforementioned, I feel working in such a diverse and multicultural workspace such as the Congressman’s Laredo office would behoove my passions and prove to be ever-more beneficial in my career.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Upon completion of this internship, I plan to enjoy my junior year at A&M and become involved with the Student Government Association as well as the International Student Association. The following summer I hope on interning with the Department of State at a U.S. Embassy/Consulate.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Through this internship experience, I have gained both the educational and introspective acumen to enhance my cultural perspective. I have thoroughly enjoyed being around constituents and hearing their concerns; this has allowed me to feel enlaced with my community and be more adjuvant.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
On my time off I enjoy: reading the Wall Street Journal, swimming, cycling, and cooking. My largest interests lay in traveling to non-westernized countries and having the opportunity to explore diverse social/cultural atmospheres.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Working in a field/office of such great interest will allow me to excel, not only within the four walls of a classroom, but outside of them as well. I have enjoyed enhancing my global perspective and proving to be a reliable asset to the Congressman’s Laredo team. I am thankful for this opportunity and hope to continue developing the relationships I have built.




Anne Bavousett - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Anne Bavousett

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a graduate student at Texas Tech University studying Higher Education. I will graduate in May 2018

3. Hometown and current residence
Coppell. TX currently living in Lubbock, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Policy informs so much of what higher education does that I wanted to see the inner workings of how policy is created.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan on finishing out my degree at Texas Tech then applying for jobs within higher education, preferably on the student services side of administration.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding portion of the internship is leading constituent tours. I greatly appreciate the opportunity to talk with members of Congressman Cuellar’s district in small groups and share the history of these buildings.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy being outside and taking in the beautiful architecture of D.C. Most weekends I will wonder around the city through museums and outdoor events until I find a bench to sit and knit and enjoy my surroundings.




Gabriel Galvan - Mission District Office
1. Name
Gabriel Galvan

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
2014- 2018 UTRGV
Age 20 Senior in college at UTRGV
Major in Political Science and Psychology. Minor in Philosophy

3. Hometown and current residence
Mission TX/Edinburg TX


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I saw it as a good opportunity to do good work and gain great experiences. I had a great time helping the people of the 28th district. Working in government and public admiration always seemed like a great way to give back to my community and I had a great time doing it.


5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following the internship, I plan to finish the rest of my education and do work with either Teach for America or the Peace Corps.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned about the resources that our government has for us and that the people that work for the 28th house district, such as Nicole and Narda, truly want to help you through the use of those resources.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? –
Outside of politics, I like music. I like playing various instruments and singing. I’m also a big fan of comics and superheroes. I am also a bit of a history nerd.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I had a great time doing this internship. I would recommend it to anyone interested in politics or government.





Briana Ortiz - Laredo District Office 
1. Name
Briana Ortiz

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently a sophomore Biology Pre-med major at the University of Texas at Austin.

3. Hometown and current residence
My hometown is Laredo, Texas and my current residence during the summer is Laredo, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I decided to pursue this internship because I wanted to get more informed about how the political system works within our country and what exactly can I do as a young voter to be more involved.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I hope to remain active and informed with both local and national politics as well as to continue my education at the University of Texas at Austin after which I hope to attend medical school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Through working as an intern I have learned to respect the ideals of differing opinions and work together to get to a similar goal. I have also learned more about the political system and what I can do as a young voter to be more active in it.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies include reading, ballet, piano, and research.


8. Anything else you want to share?
I would just like to share that even though I am a science major and hope to remain a Biology Pre-med major, that this experience as an intern is a wonderful opportunity for those interested in remaining active within the political system in order to stay informed and knowledgeable.




Spring 2017

Kobe Marquez - Mission District Office
1. Name
Kobe Marquez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a junior at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and my major is Political Science.

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born in Edinburg, TX; however, I was raised my whole life in Mission, TX.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I decided to pursue an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office because I’ve always had an interest for public service. Because this internship was being offered through the school, I saw it as a great opportunity to see first-hand and learn how public policy works.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following this internship, I plan on finishing my final year at the university, hopefully being able to graduate by the following spring. I will also be actively seeking a job that will hopefully be able to relate to what I have learned in my classes as well as this internship. Upon graduating, I want to go back to school to either earn a Law Degree or a Master’s Degree.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience I’ve had interning for Congressman Cuellar is listening to all constituents and trying to help them resolve whatever issue they bring in. This internship has also taught me a great deal of communication skills, as it has allowed me to be more verbally confident.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I play many different instruments; however, I enjoy playing the guitar and piano the most. If I’m not playing the piano or guitar, then I am probably somewhere writing songs or trying to figure out the music to a song. I also love to play and watch baseball, and enjoy watching the Houston Astros.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I would recommend that everyone pursue an internship as it provides a different, yet fun learning experience of the real world.






Walter Baker - San Antonio District Office
1. Name
Walter Baker

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
I’m a Senior Public Administration undergraduate at the University of Texas at San Antonio

3. Hometown and current residence:
I grew up near Mabank, TX though I spend most of my time these days here in San Antonio for my courses.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I view internships as very valuable because they help provide me experience while I’m young and still don’t have much. This role, in particular, will be a strong resume builder, as I’ll have achievements that I can quantify such as how many cases I helped close, and it will broaden my experience, as my previous internship was local while this is with a Federal Office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I’m applying to graduate school where I will further my education through a Masters in either Public Administration or Economic Development.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Growing up, I didn’t hold many conversations over the phone and practically none were in any sort of professional context. This internship has sharpened my over-the-phone conversational skill and comfort which I feel will benefit me down the road.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy keeping up with current issues and events, reading, listening to music, going to concerts, watching sports, and hanging out with friends.

8. Anything else you want to share?
It surprised me at first how many people slip through the cracks of agencies. I don’t myself intend to work as a caseworker, but I’ve gained a greater appreciation for how much their work is needed.




Zachary Coomes - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Zachary Coomes

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a senior at Texas Tech University and I am studying Geography with a minor in Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

3. Hometown and current residence
I am from Denton, Texas, and I live in Washington for the internship.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
After applying to the internship program at Texas Tech, I was matched with Congressman Cuellar’s office and it is a great fit. The Congressman and his entire staff are great, and he is well-respected on the Hill. Working in his office is a valuable experience that I could not pass up.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will finish my degree over the summer. After graduating, I would like to work toward a master’s degree and volunteer in the Peace Corps. With this foundation, I would like to work in Washington DC again one day.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Despite the fact that I have been in the office for a short amount of time, I have already learned much about the inner workings of a House office. The most rewarding experience is the combination of everything I am learning about myself and others, as well as the opportunity to make connections with many different people from all over the country.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I play trumpet and guitar, I like to work out and be active, and I like to explore new places. Go Texas Rangers!

8. Anything else you want to share?
I highly recommend that anyone who is interested in an internship in Washington DC should apply regardless of your area of study or the school you attend. Internships in Congressman Cuellar’s office and in all other offices are valuable experiences for any student, and the time spent here can and will translate into success in every field.





Victoria Sandoval - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Victoria I. Sandoval

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Sophomore, Texas A&M International University, MDS with Pre-Law Concentration

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to be a part of the local outreach that this office does so well.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Continue with my undergraduate degree, and pursue law school.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my free time, I like to read, listen to podcasts and do yoga. I also have my own organization at my university and I’m active in the local theatre community.



Fall 2016

Diamond Williams - Washington, D.C. Office
1. Name
Diamond Williams.

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
Senior at Texas Tech University majoring in Psychology and minoring in Women’s Studies.

3. Hometown and current residence:
From Dallas, Texas; currently living in Washington D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office in order to learn more about the way our government works through first-hand experience in the field. I also wanted the opportunity to observe the nature of a professional environment and the skills and habits of those who thrive in such environments.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
After this internship, I’ll have one semester of undergrad left and I’m looking into Law School as my next professional pursuit.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
As an intern, I have learned that paying attention to detail is very important. Something that might seem like a small/unimportant detail can end up being extremely significant later down the line. Paying attention to detail also helps you thrive in the workplace because you’re able to complete tasks correctly and efficiently.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy listening to music, cooking, and traveling. I aspire to have explored every continent by age 30.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am extremely grateful for such a prestigious opportunity and have thoroughly enjoyed Capitol Hill and Washington, D.C. as a whole. I would encourage anyone, regardless of their educational interests, to pursue a congressional internship and learn the ins and outs of how our government works. The benefits are endless.



Hannah Schmidt - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Hannah Schmidt

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
Sophomore at Georgetown University double majoring in Marketing and Management with a minor in German

3. Hometown and current residence:
From Newtown, CT but now living in Washington DC!

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to get a firsthand look at how the government system works, and experience what it would take to make my mark.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am going to finish my undergrad studies, and hopefully figure out what kind of career I want to pursue!

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I’ve been able to hone my research skills, and become more comfortable discussing a wide range of political topics. Also, I’ve learned a lot about myself through interacting with constituents – which has been very rewarding.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I like running, eating popcorn and watching football (Go Packers!)

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am a member of the Georgetown Women’s Rowing team!



Sterling Lykes - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Sterling Lykes

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Sophomore at Georgetown University, majoring in English and Spanish

3. Hometown and current residence
Hometown: Victoria, Texas; Current residence: Washington, DC

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I intend to make the most of the myriad of meaningful opportunities that Washington has to offer while I am a student here. Furthermore, I admire Congressman Cuellar, and I think that his character and temperament exemplify that of an ideal statesman. For these reasons, I am proud to be a member of his team. Lastly, it is an utter pleasure to work for a fellow Georgetown Hoya!

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Upon the conclusion of this internship, I will still have over two years of my undergraduate studies to complete. As an undergraduate, I hope to remain engaged in the wealth of experiences that Washington has to offer as the seat of our nation’s government. After graduating from Georgetown, I plan tentatively to matriculate in law school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Without a doubt, interacting with constituents has been the most gratifying, worthwhile experience during my time in Congressman Cuellar’s Office. Through helping to serve Congressman Cuellar’s constituents, I have seen firsthand how strongly our government engages directly with the people whom it serves.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Reading, writing, political philosophy

8. Anything else you want to share?
Truly, Congressman Cuellar’s Office has the kindest, most thoughtful staff that I have ever encountered. Everyone in this office has a heart the size of Texas, and working here has simply been an amazing experience. Each person has gone out of his or her way both to be exceptionally helpful and to ensure that I am maximizing my potential during my time here.



Taylor Volesky - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Taylor Volesky

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Junior at the University of North Texas majoring in Political Science with a minor in Business Law

3. Hometown and current residence
Plano, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued this internship to learn more about how the government works through real world experience.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan on finishing my undergrad in Political Science. After I graduate, my goal is to attend Law School.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
This internship has taught me how to correspond with constituents and research a wide range of political issues. I have also had the chance to network, speak, and meet with many important political figures.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Swimming, Hiking, Reading


Katie Herbert - San Antonio District Office
1. Name
Katie Hebert


2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at the University of Texas at San Antonio; Graduation Date: Fall 2016; Interdisciplinary Studies major with a Legal Studies minor

3. Hometown and current residence
Hometown: San Francisco, CA; Current residence: San Antonio, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
After earning a Master of Public Administration and Juris Doctorate degree, I want to work in the public service sector as an attorney. This internship is an excellent opportunity to learn more about what the public service field entails. Additionally, I want to gain new knowledge and insight in politics.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will be starting a Master of Public Administration degree with an Urban Management and Public Affairs concentration at St. Mary’s University in the Spring 2017 semester. I will graduate with this degree in the Spring 2018 semester and will start law school at a different school outside of Texas in the Fall 2018 semester.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
My most rewarding experience has been listening to issues constituents are concerned about and working together with the staff to resolve their cases.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies and interests include traveling, playing piano, volunteering, working with the children at Respite Care of San Antonio, reading, and spending time with family, friends, and my cat.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I highly recommend this internship to any student or recent graduate who is interested in public service as a career.


Ernesto Eguia - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Ernesto Eguia

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Freshman studying Political Science at Texas A&M International University

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Because I wanted to be directly involved in assisting our constituents with their local and federal issues.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Continue my education in the fields of Political Science and Business Administration.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have acquired great knowledge with this internship opportunity, and my most rewarding experience has been when a constituent thanks me for assisting them with an issue.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies would are creating businesses, analyzing business data, recreational sports, film production, playing piano, reading and philanthropy.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I highly recommend this internship to anyone seeking a better understanding of what it means to be involved in public service.



Antonia Taylor - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Antonia Alexandra Taylor (Toni)

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
4th year, Texas A&M International University, BBA in Managment

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I plan on pursuing a Juris Doctor and politics is a route an attorney can take; therefore, I wanted to learn more about this career.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to graduate with my bachelors in business and then applying to law schools. Hopefully I will make great connections throughout this experience.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I gained lifelong connections that will surely help me as I further my career and I have picked up great communication skills.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I paint, I love volunteer and I enjoy reading.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I have a real estate license.



Elliot Gallegos - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Elliot Gallegos

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, Texas A&M International University, Political Science and Criminal Justice

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I have always been interested in politics and this internship will make me have first-hand experience on politics in the Federal level.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following the internship I plan to graduate and apply for jobs involving government. I also plan to study for the LSAT, as I’m interested in attending law school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Politics are not a black and white issue; on the contrary they contain a big amount grey substance. Furthermore, working in politics takes a big amount of time, intelligence, and leadership.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I like reading politics and philosophy, but my passion is watching (Premier League) and playing soccer.

8. Anything else you want to share?
COYG! “Come On You Gunners”



Sadik Kokuroglu - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Sadik Hakan Kokuroglu

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Rising Freshman at the George Mason University, Government and Politics.


3. Hometown and current residence
I was born in Izmir, Turkey and I am currently living in Chantilly, Virginia

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I was always interested in politics and I wanted to experience the legislative side of it. I want to pursue a career in the Capitol Hill and this internship was the perfect opportunity to see what it would like to be to work at the Capitol Hill

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I wish to intern again since unfortunately we were in recess for the duration of my internship.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I improved myself in many ways in this office that will help me in the future. My communication skills, understanding of legislation and writing skills have improved significantly. The most rewarding experience was helping the staff with projects and work on something that helps other people.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies are reading, traveling with friends, and playing badminton. My main interest is politics other than that I am really interested in cars .

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thank you for the opportunity you gave me to experience what I enjoy to do with the wonderful staff of this office.



Alicia Gomez - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Alicia Gomez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major –
I am a senior at Texas A&M International University double majoring in
International Economics and Marketing

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
To gain experience and knowledge in politics and serving the community, which are my strongest interests.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
To graduate this December 2016 with both of my Bachelor’s degrees and start working in the politics field while pursuing my Master’s degree in Public Policy

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience has been seeing how devoted the people from the office are to listening to the citizens’ issues and working together toward finding a solution for them.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy reading, exercising, travelling whenever possible and of course spending quality time with family and friends

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thank you very much for this opportunity



SUMMER 2016

Bristol Gunderson - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Bristol Gunderson

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Class of 2016 at Wellesley College with a double major in History and Russian Language & Literature

3. Hometown and current residence
Seabrook, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Congressman Cuellar is a respected member of Congress from my home state, who values education. I wanted to expand my experience in congressional offices and am delighted to work with Congressman Cuellar and his staff learning about the issues effecting his district.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to attend law school after working in Washington, D.C., for a few years in the aerospace industry.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
So far I have learned about writing constituent letters to serve my fellow Texans and their concerns.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy playing and caddying golf, playing piano, and volunteering with the Intl. We Love U Foundation.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I want to say thank you to my parents who are supporting me in this internship.



Katelyn Kim - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Katelyn Kim

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Rising senior at Texas Tech University; Public Relations major with a minor in political science

3. Hometown and current residence
Mansfield, TX; Lubbock, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I had recently developed an interest for politics and political campaigns. I wanted to explore it and see if it was an area of PR I could see myself pursuing post-graduation.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will finish out my last year at Texas Tech, receive my Bachelor’s degree in May of 2017, and look for a job in the PR field.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
My most rewarding experience was seeing the press/media aspects of a congressional office. It was a side to PR that I had not previously experienced. Interning for Congressman Cuellar opened up my eyes to work on The Hill and increased my interest in pursuing a career within the political realm.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I really enjoy reading books, specifically mystery novels. I am also an avid coffee drinker and can usually be found in a local coffee shop wherever I go.


Noah Alford - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Noah Alford

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Freshman at the University of Texas at Austin studying Management at the McCombs School of Business.

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I was interested in pursuing an internship with the congressman to gain a deeper understanding of the congressman’s role in Laredo. I was also interested in learning how his office was involved in the Laredo community.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan on completing my college education at the University of Texas and attending law school in pursuit of a career in management.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned how to assist constituents both in person and through phone calls with the various federal issues they may have. I also grasped an in-depth look at the work the congressman’s office does on a daily basis to assist the constituents living in the district.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies include reading, spending time with family and friends, and exercising. My main interests lie within the sports industry and its role in society.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am grateful for the opportunity to intern at the congressman’s office in Laredo throughout the summer and have enjoyed this learning experience.



Alecia Cortes - Mission District Office

1. Name
Alecia Nicole Cortes

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Graduate, University of Texas at Rio Grande Valley, Criminal Justice

3. Hometown and current residence
I was raised in Harlingen and currently reside in Edinburg where I attended university

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued this internship to be able to get the hands on experience of working in a political office and to be able to see the day to day procedures and outcomes

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I want to further my education to get a master’s in Homeland Security Studies and then go to Law School hopefully with George Mason Law

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Working as an intern I was able to learn just how much the congressman and his staff does for their district and how much they help their constituents.
My most rewarding experience was being able to be a part of the Border Patrol brush walk in Falfurrias and really get to experience and see what agents and immigrants go through out there, and being able to network and meet so many great and important people.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies are reading and watching crime stories or shows, drinking wine, walking my dogs, cross fit, doing Rebel Wilson impersonations, family time on the weekends, going to the beach

8. Anything else you want to share?
I hope to intern in DC next when I hopefully move up there to attend Law School.



Karla Garcia-Laredo District Office

 1.     Name – Karla I. Garcia

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major – Freshmen, Texas A&M International University, Business

3.     Hometown and current residence – Laredo, TX

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued this internship in order to gain a better understanding of Congress and become more familiar with the legislative process.

5.     What are your plans following this internship? –  

I will attend Texas A&M International University for two years, and I will then attend the University of Texas at Austin and apply for acceptance into the McCombs, School of Business. I hope to then earn a law degree in order to pursue my career in corporate law.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I enjoyed being involved and assisting in important events. I have learned how our federal government works. The most rewarding experience working as an intern for Congressmen Henry Cuellar has been having the opportunity to help our constituents with their struggles and concerns.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? –

I really enjoy exercise and physical fitness. I love running as well as dancing. I also have a great passion and admiration for art, drawing in particular.

8.     Anything else you want to share?
This internship has been a great experience and I could not be more grateful for the opportunity.


Melissa Vazquez-Laredo District Office 


1.     Name –  Melissa Vazquez

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major – senior, at Texas A&M International University. Major: Political Science.


3.     Hometown and current residence

Hometown: Laredo Tx,

Current Residence: Laredo Tx.


4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I Pursued an Internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office to gain experience and knowledge of my local, state, and national government.


5.     What are your plans following this internship?  

I plan to complete my bachelor’s degree at TAMIU and pursue a Master’s degree in Public Administration.


6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

As an intern for Congressman Cuellar’s office I have learned the hard work and professionalism that goes into public service. The most rewarding experience is being thanked by constituents that come to our office with concerns, and knowing that they leave our office knowing that we truly care.


7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

My hobbies include playing the piano, reading, writing, and spend time with friends and family.


8.     Anything else you want to share?

I have really enjoyed my experience as an intern in this office. My hope is to work hard and one day hold a position in public service. 

Emily Rosas-San Antonio District Office

1.     Name – Emily Rosas

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major – Sophomore, Baylor University, Accounting

3.     Hometown and current residence – San Antonio, TX. 7327 Clear Rock

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office? 

I want to see how an office ran to join experience for future employments

5.     What are your plans following this internship? 

I plan to continue my studies at Baylor and possible work for one of the Big Four in accounting

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Not yet known

7.     What are your hobbies or interests?

I enjoy watching movies, playing and watching sports, and hanging out with friends.

8.     Anything else you want to share?

no


Joseph Monahan- Laredo District Office

1. Name
Joseph A. Monahan


2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I was previously studying at Oral Roberts University, but I am now an entering freshman at the University of Texas at Austin. I am majoring in Economics.


3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued this internship in particular to gain a deeper understanding and perspective of what congressman’s role is in a community that situated on a national border with Mexico.


5. What are your plans following this internship?

I plan to finish my degree in Economics, and obtain more experience in the field of politics and finance.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
So far learning about constituents and the different issues they have with federal agencies

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies include reading the Wall Street Journal, the Economist, and Spanish Literature. My largest interest is reading about Latin American current events and its economy.  Some of my other interests include traveling and fashion.


8. Anything else you want to share?
I am thankful for the opportunity of working at the Laredo District Office. I look forward to this internship because it will be interesting to have a closer look at what Laredo’s constituents face.

 


Sophia Rossell - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Sophia Rossell Romo

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Rising Senior at Wake Forest University Class of 2017
Politics and International Affairs Major, Global Trade and Commerce Minor


3. Hometown and current residence
San Antonio, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I was interested in becoming more familiar with the legislative process and the day to day operations of a congressional office. I admire Congressman Cuellar’s commitment to doing what is best for his district and as a Texan, wanted to learn more about legislation affecting my state.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am attending the Democratic and Republican National Conventions this July as part of a political engagement program called Wake the Vote. I will spend the remainder of the summer and the fall canvassing and organizing for future President Hillary Clinton until the general election.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have really enjoyed the opportunity to speak with engaged constituents and hear their views and ideas.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I am the Chief Education Officer of my sorority Kappa Alpha Theta and I love spending time with my sisters. I also enjoy my position as the Membership and Events Director of College Democrats.



Sarah Rosenberg - San Antonio District Office
1. Name
Sarah E. Rosenberg

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a sophomore at the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio. I am majoring in government with a minor in art.

3. Hometown and current residence
Floresville, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to get a full view of working in a Congressperson’s job to determine if I want to continue this line of employment or become a lawyer.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
First I would like to finish my degree and then either work for my law degree or Masters in Politics.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have learned of the many ways I can help constituents solve issues that plague their life.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love to paint, read and, watch CNN.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am so grateful for the opportunity I have been presented by working at Congressman Henry Cuellar’s office.


SPRING 2016

Analyssa Ayala - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Analyssa Ayala

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
I am currently a high school senior at The Texas Academy of International and STEM Studies and a college sophomore at Texas A&M International University. I am studying Psychology and plan to get my M.A. in clinical health counseling.

3. Hometown and current residence:
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued the internship with Congressman Cuellar to gain knowledge in politics and government.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Once I finish the internship, I plan on continuing my education at TAMIU and getting my masters in clinical health counseling. When I finish school, I plan on opening my own life coach/therapy practice in Laredo, Texas.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy playing the oboe in my free time and reading.

7. Anything else you want to share?
This internship has been a great experience, and I recommend it to anyone and everyone.



Grezia D. Barrera - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Grezia D. Barrera

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a sophomore attending Texas A&M International University, perusing bachelor’s degrees in Sociology with minor in Business.

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to pursue an internship at the congressman office to have a better understand of the federal system, as well as to have gaining knowledge on how it works.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will follow by taking a semester to study abroad in Chile and Argentina before graduating.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Meeting former presidents and current ambassadors during our events has been a wonderful opportunity. I’ve also greatly enjoyed getting to know our constituents and learning how our federal government functions.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Some of my hobbies include spending time with my family and friends. Other hobbies include reading, going to the movies, running and yoga.



Ana Montanez - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Ana Montanez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major :
I recently graduated from the University of Houston, and I am Political Science major.

3. Hometown and current residence:
I am originally from Caracas, Venezuela. I have lived three years in Houston, TX. For this internship I am currently living in Washington, D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
The Leland Fellows program from the University of Houston paired me up with Congressman Cuellar’s office. Congressman Cuellar is a hard working person, driven by the wellbeing of his community.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plans are to find a job within government, an international organization or a federal agency.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience has been to get a better sense of the legislative process. Being able to go to the committee hearings and the markups of the bills, as well as working with the Legislative team.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love to travel, going to the theatre and reading.



Alex Franklin - San Antonio District Office

1. Name
Alex Franklin

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
3rd year, University of Texas at San Antonio: Political Science Major

3. Hometown and current residence
Aurora, Colorado and currently live in San Antonio

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I discovered the opportunity through a professor and decided to pursue it. After the interview and finding out I would get real job experience, I could not deny such an opportunity.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to finish my degree in the summer of 2017, pursue a Master’s degree in Political Science, and find work as a congressional staffer.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience is when I get to tell a constituent their case had a favorable outcome or help someone with a federal agency.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Building cars, politics, art, snowboarding, taking photographs, target shooting, and martial arts.

8. Anything else you want to share?
The small office environment, freedom afforded to have some authority, and to be respected as an intern is a unique experience most interns at my level never get to experience. I thank the staff in the office for allowing and creating such a rare environment and opportunity.



Amber Herrington - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Amber Herrington

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Junior, University of North Texas, Political Science Major/Philosophy Minor

3. Hometown: Flower Mound, TX
Current Residence: Denton, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
The political process, especially as it affects my home state of Texas, has always fascinated me. Congressman Cuellar’s office was my first choice for an internship opportunity, because of the Congressman’s ability to cross party lines for positive change, his dedication to higher education, and for the experience I can gain working with a senior member of congress.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following my internship, I will return to the University of North Texas to complete my senior year of my bachelor’s degree, and then I plan to attend a joint MBA/JD program.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Working with all the staff and the Congressman has been such a beneficial experience. They are all so generous with sharing their knowledge. As an intern, I have been given the privilege of learning how Capitol Hill functions, and watching firsthand how policy is made from beginning to end. Experiencing my government as a working participant in it has been very fulfilling.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy traveling, exploring the outdoors, and following politics.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Truly, I am grateful for this professional opportunity; it has been an extremely valuable experience.


Francis Atwell - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Francis Matthew Atwell

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Graduate, Texas A&M University, and Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I felt like this is a good starting off point for a career I wish to pursue in working diplomatic relations for the U.S. Federal Government.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I wish to pursue a career in the federal government.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?
Playing guitar & exploring and finding different genres of music

7. Anything else you want to share?
I’m just excited to see what I can learn during this internship.


Morgan Treviño - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Morgan Treviño

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at Texas Tech University; Double major in Spanish and Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
Abilene, TX; Washington, D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
As a Political Science major, I am very interested in politics and how they affect us. I specifically sought out Congressman Cuellar’s office for the opportunity to help serve constituents that speak Spanish.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am moving to Spain after I graduate in the summer. Through the Spanish Ministry of Education, I will be teaching English for a year. If life brings me back to the U.S., I would like to study international law and/or disability law.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experiences thus far are helping the staff/constituents with any issues that involve Spanish and English translation. I have been able to speak Spanish almost every day and it has been great practice for me.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love to read, watch movies/plays, go to sporting events, travel, and spend time with my family and friends.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I’m thankful I was given the opportunity to represent my university in this way. Wreck ‘em Tech!


Daniela Gomez-Braña - San Antonio District Office

1. Name
Daniela Gomez-Braña

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, University of Texas at San Antonio, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Legal Studies

3. Hometown and current residence
Tampico, Mexico.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship with the Congressman Cuellar's Office because I have always been interested and have had a deep passion for American politics.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will graduate from college at the same time I will finish my internship. During this summer, I will be interning with the Secretariat of Economy at the Mexican Embassy at Washington DC. After it, I plan to work a year in a Law Firm while applying for Law School.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
As an intern, I have been able to gain a more hands-on insight of the American politics. It has also been very rewarding helping constituents reach a favorable outcome to their inquiries.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy traveling, spending time with my family and dogs, and going for brunch with friends. My hobbies include running half-marathons, more recently a marathon, and teaching yoga.

8. Anything else you want to share?
It has been a really fulfilling opportunity to intern with Congressman Cuellar’s San Antonio office, and a privilege to serve this district and country.



Jesus Padilla - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Jesus E. Padilla

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
College Year: 2nd Year Classification: Sophomore/ Name of College Attending: Texas A&M International University/ Major: Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship with the Congressman to get my feet wet in federal politics. I am very interested in how the federal system works and this internship would help me understand how the government aids us in our daily lives. In addition, my passion and main goal in life is to help other individuals succeed and this is a great way to feed my passion. I also hope to one day be in the Congressman’s position, representing the same district and I believe that before one can be a great leader, one must be a great follower and observe others around himself.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to continue my education at TAMIU and try to finish early.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love to play basketball, run, and exercise. I have a deep interest in politics (American/International), criminal cases, and the criminal justice system. I am also interested in government and how government functions. I am currently the President of my student council at the Texas Academy of International and STEM Studies, and I was a Senator At-Large, the Co-Chair of the Political Action Committee, and the Director of the Freshmen Representative Council in TAMIU’s Student Government Association before entering this internship.

7. Anything else you want to share?
I hope to use what I learn in this internship to aid me in my future career in local politics, state politics, and federal politics as I hope, and plan, to run in all three political arenas.


FALL 2015


Breon Williams - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Breon Williams

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, University of North Texas, Business Economics

3. Hometown and current residence
Milwaukee, WI

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to intern in Congressman Cuellar’s office for the opportunity to network

5. What are your plans following this internship?
To find a full time job related to finance, economics, or the foreign exchange (Forex) market. I plan to be an analyst of some kind or a derivatives/commodities/forex trader.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been
your most rewarding experience?
Working in a Congressman’s office is a fast pace environment, that requires a high level of adaptability and retention

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Read, write short stories, sing, trade currency

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thus far my experience in this office has been enjoyable. Working for Congressman Cuellar has opened my eyes politically. I am more aware of political topics now than I have ever been before. It’s been fascinating to see the government in action on a daily basis.


Marcos Araya - Washington, D.C., Office


1. Name
Marcos Araya

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Second year, NVCC, Business Administration

3. Hometown and current residence
Springfield Virginia

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
An internship at Congressman Cuellar’s congressional office would be a good place to learn the legislative process and how things work in a congressional office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following the internship I hope to find a position, working for a congressional office working with communications or media work.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I really enjoyed attending the hearing where the Congressman would speak for his district, hearing him you could feel the passion and love he has for his district. I wake up ecstatic to go in to work every morning and help the office, constituents and the congressman with anything I can do to help the 28th district, it has all been a very rewarding experience.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I like to exercise, skateboard, play basketball, and play video games on my spare time. I am currently interested in computers and just knowing how they work. I also enjoy reading POLITICO in my spare time .

8. Anything else you want to share?
Working at this office I have a much clearer understanding on how things work over at the hill. It has all been a very rewarding experience 10/10 would do again.


Gilbert Garcia - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Gilbert Garcia

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently a senior at Texas A&M International University pursuing a degree in Business Administration concentration in Marketing

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I believe that it will serve as the foundation to an exciting and promising career, in which I would be able to give back to my community and continue to experience new aspects of the political and economic events that take place locally, nationally, and internationally.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
After I conclude my undergraduate studies and complete my internship at the Congressman’s office I plan to attend Law School.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I believe that the most rewarding part of working as an intern in the Congressman’s office is that I get to witness the struggles and concerns that the population as whole goes through on a daily basis. It allows me to adopt different perspectives on controversial issues and events.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I have a great interest in literature and writing, I feel that it enables me to express myself in a variety of ways. I also like to be very active, dedicating to sports like football and weight training.


Arian Holman - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Arian Holman

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Union College Graduate, Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence
Mexico City, Washington D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I am strongly focused on Mexican immigration and organized crime specifically Mexican drug cartels while I was studying in college. I found Cuellar’s office would be a good fit.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am hoping to join the Hill as a staff member.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The office of Congressman Cuellar has an exceptional work ethic that I was able to join and take on for myself. Furthermore, I got a close experience on how congressional offices work which I am sure will be invaluable for my future endeavors

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy traveling and reading. My favorite part about traveling is being able to expose myself to new and different environments that force me to be out of my comfort zone providing a possibility to learn about other cultures and ways of life.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am very grateful for the opportunity to be part of Congressman Cuellar’s team and the connections I have made while being here.


Connor McKinney - San Antonio District Office

1. Name
Conor McKinney

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at Trinity University, majoring in economics, history, and political science

3. Hometown and current residence
From Houston, Texas and living in San Antonio

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I enjoyed my time working in Congressman Pete Olson’s office this summer and wanted to continue with a similar job here in San Antonio.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Unsure. As a senior this is a stressful question that I prefer not to think about.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy backpacking, baseball, long-distance running, indie rock, and Cormac McCarthy novels.


Jonathan Chacon - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Jonathan Chacon

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a rising sophomore at the University of Chicago majoring in economics and philosophy.

3. Hometown and current residence
I currently live and reside in Arlington, Virginia.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I really appreciate his dedication to education and his willingness to work with others across the aisle especially in this partisan era. I wanted to get a firsthand perspective of how things work on Capitol Hill rather than entirely relying on the media.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
After college I’m thinking of applying to Law school with an interest in Constitutional law.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I think I’ve learned the importance of letting constituents know that you value and respect their opinions regardless of your position. Being successful requires the capacity to know when to lead as well as when to listen. My most rewarding experience has been learning how to give tours of the Capitol and Library of Congress, which has given me a larger appreciation of U.S history and our nation’s values.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I play the guitar and my favorite band is Led Zeppelin. I love to watch soccer and football with my favorite teams being F.C Barcelona and the Denver Broncos. I enjoy watching Meet the Press on Sunday mornings. My favorite philosophers/writers are Kant, Plato, Locke, Nietzsche, Tocqueville, Kierkegaard, Hemingway, and Camus.

8. Anything else you want to share?
As the son of a diplomat I’ve lived in the U.S, Peru, Ecuador, Spain, and Guatemala.


Austin Rittenberry - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Austin Rittenberry

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, Texas Tech University, Political Science (Minor in Economics)

3. Hometown and current residence
Born and raised in Lubbock, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
All politics fascinates me, but education and foreign relations are two issues I am most passionate about. Congressman Cuellar’s heavy involvement in those specific areas, along with his extensive experience on the Hill, made this office in particular very appealing to me.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I will graduate in the following spring. Ideally, I would like to pursue an opportunity to work at the Texas Capitol in Austin. However, if an opportunity to work in DC presented itself, I would be more than excited to follow through with that.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
It’s a dream come true for a history buff to be involved and actively taking part in any research, legislation, and constituent correspondence about current events that will one day be important parts of history.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Hobbies: Tennis, trying new foods/ cooking, reading
Interest: Sanctions, foreign relations, and learning about different cultures and customs.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thank you for the opportunity to be here!


Brenda Gonzalez - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Brenda Gonzalez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently a Senior at Texas A&M International University pursuing a double major in History and Political Science.

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in Laredo, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
The reason why I decided to pursue this internship was because I want to gain practical experience at the federal level.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following this internship I plan on completing my degree and pursuing my Master’s degree at TAMIU.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned that dealing with immigration law can be challenging and that the people need compassionate individuals willing to help.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my spare time I enjoy cooking and reading.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Sometime in the near future I plan on pursuing a law degree at St. Mary’s University in San Antonio.


Arlene Amieva - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Arlene L. Amieva

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior ( class of 2016), Stanford University, Human Biology with an area of concentration in Nutrition, Healthcare and Law

3. Hometown and current residence:
Hometown: Laredo, Texas Living in: Stanford, California

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Given that I have previously interned in the district office in Laredo, I was interested in learning more about the D.C. office and observing how the work done across the districts offices comes together. Furthermore, I hope this internship will prepare me pursue a career in law.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to complete my senior year of college at Stanford. I then plan on acquiring an internship/job in the area of law in preparation for my application to law schools.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have gained a lot of insight into the workings of the House of Representatives. The internship has improved my leadership, communication, and organizational skills. Additionally, this internship has exposed to numerous areas/ topics that the office is divided into (ex. Media, scheduling, etc.)

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy reading, painting, and running.



Osvaldo Guzman - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Osvaldo Guzman

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently enrolled at Texas A&M International University where I continue my studies as a Business Administration major (Focus in management) as a junior.

3. Hometown and current residence
I am a born and raised Laredo citizen of Texas where I am currently still a part of the community.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
After being exposed to an internship opportunity in Washington D.C. I strongly enjoyed the ambition that drives people there. In fact, because of this moving-forward atmosphere, I knew I wanted others in my region to experience the same energy and so I searched for an opportunity in my district thus finding Henry Cuellar’s internship program. I knew I wanted to gain the experience necessary to impact others and being able to positively change their lives.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Following this internship, I will take my experience and knowledge gained to help others find the same opportunities I have. I am also pursuing an opportunity to Intern at Capitol Hill. I am hoping to be taken up on an offer to be part of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute internship program.

6. What do you hope to learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar?
As an intern for Congressman Cuellar, I hope to gain a better understanding on government work cases as well as a gain on knowledge of the topics such as immigration reforms, Social Security, and local government collaboration with national government.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies include playing the drums, reading and living a fitness lifestyle. I have been a musician for 8 years already and have been training for about 3 as well. These are interests of mine because having the ability to better one’s self either through talent or progression, by challenging yourself, interests and amazes me.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am a self-driven and motivated individual who believes in the satisfaction of the journey. I am passionate about helping others and I believe that in this way, we can see a faster gradual paced improvement in the community.


SUMMER 2015

Meral B. Aycicek - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Meral B. Aycicek

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I’m a high school senior at Northside College Preparatory High School. I plan to study international diplomacy and business. I am planning to apply to the SFS at Georgetown Early Decision.

3. Hometown and current residence
Chicago and Chicago

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I had applied to another internship at the Turkic American Alliance. I decided that this would be a very beneficial internship so I chose to stay an extra month and intern here as well. I was already planning to do some sort of legislative internship this summer-probably at the district level- so it worked out that I got a better opportunity while I was already in D.C.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I’m going back to Chicago to complete my senior year in high school. I will be working on college applications for the next few months. I really enjoyed my time in a legislative office so I am planning to get a job or an internship at a district office when I get back.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I gained a lot of work experience. I improved my communication skills and developed work ethic. I also learned how a congressional office works which has been very rewarding. I know I want to come back and intern in DC again, either next summer or when I’m in college.

My most rewarding experience was meeting and getting to know all of the amazing staffers. I seriously got lucky because everyone in this office is unbelievably nice.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I play the viola. I golf and I play lacrosse. I enjoy traveling and learning about new cultures. My favorite pastime is meeting new people.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thanks again for giving me this amazing opportunity. The skills I gained in these three weeks will help me for the rest of my life.


Aida Khaledi - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Aida Khaledi

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am part of the Class of 2017 at Broward College. I want to double major in education and journalism

3. Hometown and current residence
I reside in Weston, Florida

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to learn about policy and politics. To see how process works.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan on going back to school at Broward College in the fall.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned how congress and the political process works.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I like to play tennis and babysit little kids.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I enjoy spending time with friends and family, going on adventures, and trying new things.


Luis Bravo- Laredo District Office

1. Name
Luis Bravo

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Rising Freshman, University of Pennsylvania, Sociology and PPE (Politics, Philosophy, and Economics)

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, TX moving to Philadelphia, PA this upcoming Fall

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Politics has always been an area of personal intrigue; I reasoned that pursing an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office would provide me a deeper insight into the complex political world.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Later this August, I intend to start college all while remaining politically active in my new community. Later on in the future I intend to continue on to law school.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Empathy and understanding. Working with constituents and helping them resolve their matters has been a revealing experience. Every constituent faces varyingly different circumstances, and though we cannot help every constituent, the effort the office puts in resolving an individual’s matters is admirable. Not only has this internship educated me about the various processes within our political system, it has also taught me important life lessons.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
As an alumnus of Vidal M. Trevino School of Fine Arts and Communications, I am rather active in the fine arts community in Laredo. I enjoy playing piano, learning new, interesting things, and hanging out with friends on the weekends.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Thank you for this wonderful opportunity; it was a pleasure to be a part of such a dedicated team.I will always remember the great discussions we had over coffee and pan dulce in the morning.


Baldemar Garcia - Laredo District Office
1. Name
Baldemar Garcia

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Still in high school

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, TX for both

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued this internship to gain experience and to see what it’s like working for Congressman Cuellar.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plans are to finish high school and go to college to study law.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned that the congressman deals with many different types of issues and that he has a great deal of responsibilities. My most rewarding experience is being thanked by the constituents after I successfully help them.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy playing sports and researching subjects that I don’t know very well.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I’ve enjoyed this internship so far and I think it is a great experience to have.

Pablo Mancera - Washington, D.C. Office
1. Name
Pablo Mancera B. De Arrigunaga

2. Year in college, name of college, and major.
Third year in college, I study law at ITAM in Mexico City.

3. Hometown and current residence
Born and raised in Mexico City.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I’m very interested in issues regarding international trade and also Mexico’s energy sector. Congressman Cuellar’s office was the perfect fit since he’s backing pro pacific trade legislation and also making efforts to build a good business relationship in the US/MEX border region, especially in the energy sector.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I’ll go back to law school in Mexico City starting mid August and I’d like to start working in a lobbying firm that has a clientele of important multinational companies in my country.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Most importantly I learned the value of being able to understand the way people think about politics in two very different countries. I didn’t imagine being a bilingual Mexican could prove to be so useful in Congress. It turns out I was able to help out a lot. I learned how to deal with different kinds of people with diverse political points of view and distinct agendas. I also further developed my work environment skills and I got along well with the whole office. It was an amazing experience to be able to see American democracy playing out in front of my eyes. Not only did I get to see what happens behind the curtains (in the congressional offices), I also got to attend committee hearings with Congressman Cuellar and listen to various debates in the house’s floor. Also, as a congressional intern I’ve been able to attend several conferences and events in the capitol regarding the issues I’m interested in. I learned a lot from these experiences and got to meet many important people.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My political interests are international business, financial sector legislation and trade policy. My personal hobbies are reading (a lot), extreme sports , gadgets and gizmos, writing, playing the drums and keeping a very busy social life.

8. Anything else you want to share?
Interning here this summer has been a very cool experience. I was here for seven weeks so I pretty much got to meet 2 or 3 cycles of interns. I made good friends and important connections both inside the Congressional buildings and around Washington DC. I hope we can all stay in touch and maybe even help each other out in the future.

Leslie Martinez - Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Leslie Denise Martinez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior at Texas A&M International University, B.A. Multidisciplinary Studies: Political Science, Translation and International Leadership

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued a placement at Capitol Hill this summer to have a better understanding of the legislative process and a clear vision of my career goals. I recently declared Political Science as one of the concentrations for my major, and I wanted to learn more on civil engagement and how to be an active citizen in my community. I was placed in Congressman Cuellar’s office as part of my fellowship with the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute. CHCI is the premier Hispanic nonprofit and nonpartisan organization dedicated to develop the next generation of Latino Leaders. I was very fortunate to be matched with Congressman Cuellar whose hometown is also Laredo and with whom I share a similar background.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
When I return home I will complete my B.A. degree at TAMIU and will graduate in December. My intent is to get involved in a campaign to promote civil engagement and the Latino vote for the upcoming 2016 Presidential election. I will also continue to work with Project Pengyou, a non-profit international organization that promotes U.S.-China relations; currently, our Pengyou chapter at TAMIU is the only one in the state. In the future, I hope I continue to be a bridge-builder that can link the U.S., the Latino community, and China through language, culture and policy.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience was the opportunity to learn more about legislation while working with topics and issues that affect my own community. This made this experience deeply valuable and relevant as I learned how to be an active participant on legislation as a constituent. I also had the opportunity to attend very informative briefings on topics of interest, such as Trade, Foreign Affairs, and Animal Welfare.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Foreign Languages particularly Mandarin, Traveling, Martial Arts, Dancing and Cooking.


Kimia Khaledi - Washington, D.C., Office
1. Name
Kimia Khaledi

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am a rising Junior in Oyster Bay High School in Oyster Bay, New York.

3. Hometown and current residence
Oyster Bay Cove, New York.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship at Congressman Cuellar's Office because I always had a deep passion for American politics and an interest for international affairs. This internship allowed me to follow-through with my personal interests and learn a tremendous amount in the heart of American politics itself, Washington, D.C.

5. What are your plans following this internship
Following this internship, I plan to complete high school and hopefully graduate at the top of my class. I then plan to incorporate the vast knowledge that I have gained from this internship in my college experience and my future endeavors.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Throughout my experience at Congressman Cuellar's Office, I learned many important and valuable lessons. I acquired many new skills that will be extremely essential throughout my life. I was able to actually apply many methods and ideas that I was taught in a classroom. I also learned how much the office of Congressman Cuellar does for each and everyone of their constitutes in the 28th district and the most gratifying experience was actually being able to personally speak with the constituents and listen to their opinions regarding many foreign affairs.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my spare time, I enjoy playing tennis and running track on my school's varsity team, traveling the world, reading avidly and participating on my school's mock trial team.

8. Anything else you want to share?
This internship was such a unique and significant experience in my life and I am truly grateful that I was granted an opportunity to work at Congressman Cuellar's office. The skills that I have learned will be with me for the rest of my life and it was the most rewarding experience that I have partaken in.

Thank you, Congressman Cuellar and to the entire staff!


Ivana Khaledi- Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Ivana Khaledi

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I'm a high school freshman at American Heritage School

3. Hometown and current residence
I was born and raised in Laredo Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursed the internship because I am interested in politics and I wanted to get a better understanding in what happens in our government

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plan is to go back to school

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned how to communicate with people because I'm usually shy and giving tours and speaking on the phone really helped me get out of my comfort zone

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy reading

8. Anything else you want to share?
The internship with congressman cuellar was by far the best experience ever! I learned a lot from him and his staff


Rasoul Khaledi- Washington, D.C., Office

1. Name
Rasoul A. Khaledi

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Freshman at American Heritage School (High School)

3. Hometown and current residence
Fort Lauderdale, FL

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
To gain an experience

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Go back next year

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
A better view of how our government runs

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Interested in politics

8. Anything else you want to share?
Wish I could be there longer  


Antonio Rodriguez - Mission District Office 

1. Name
Antonio Rodriguez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major 

Senior, University of Texas-Rio Grande Valley, Political Science



3. Hometown and current residence

San Juan, Texas



4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?  

I am interested in politics and was interested in the work that the Congressman does in his district. I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar because I wanted to learn more about the day to day procedures in the office of a Congressman and how the constituents can be assisted with the help of the office. 



5. What are your plans following this internship? 

I plan to complete my final year at UT-RGV and receive my degree, Furthermore, I hope to continue my education and attend law school.



6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience? 
I learned that the office does a lot to help out the constituents as well the communities within the district. One of the things that I found the most rewarding was being able to help the constituents and being able to close their cases favorably. 

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy reading comics on my spare time. I also enjoy reading and watching Game of Thrones.

8. Anything else you want to share? 
Go Vaqueros!

Alejandra Andrea Morin - Mission District Office

1. Name
Alejandra Andrea Morin 

2. Year in college, name of college, and major 
Senior at The University of Texas- Pan American Major in Psychology minor in Political Science and Communications.

3. Hometown and current residence
I’m from Rio Grande City and currently living in Mission.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office? 
I thought it would be a great experience to see what a Congressman does for his district, and I was able to do so during the internship.

5. What are your plans following this internship? 
I plan on continuing my education by applying for law school in the fall of 2016.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience? 
During this internship I had the opportunity to get to know Narda and Nichole and see what their responsibilities are in the office of Congressman Cuellar. Going in I had little knowledge of what they did for people in the 28th district and now I admire what they do for constituents. They maintain a daily update on cases to make sure the constituent get the help they are seeking until the case is closed. I shadowed Nichole when visiting cities that fall under the 28th district and it was interesting to see the difficulties these cities face and how the Congressman can help cities with his support.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
A hobbie I don’t get to do often at the time is bay fishing, I find it really relaxing and fun.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I would like to thank both Narda and Nichole for being kind and patient with both Antonio and I. Since the day I got interviewed for the internship both Nichole and Narda made me feel welcomed.

Katie Payne - San Antonio District Office


1. Name
Katie Payne

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, Trinity University, English

3. Hometown and current residence
Houston, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued this internship because I believe that working in government provides a unique experience that one cannot encounter in other offices. Because the Congressman’s office provides a multitude of services for his constituents, an internship at his office provides a large amount of experiences that will help me not only in future work but in becoming a more educated citizen as well.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
The following semester I am interning in Federal Judge Garcia’s office. After graduating in December, I hope to get a job in human resources, marketing, or paralegal work and hopefully go to law school in the next few years.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Closing cases favorably has been the most rewarding experience. It is sometimes so easy to take a pessimistic view towards the government’s effect on individual citizens, and when we close a case favorably, it is rewarding to see a citizens life benefited due to our work in the office.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy running, reading, and spending time in coffee shops. I also am a volunteer at Alamo Heights High School through an organization called Young Life.



Albert Saenz - San Antonio District Office

1. Name
Albert M. Saenz III

2. Year in college, name of college and major
Junior, Texas A&M University, Communication

3. Hometown and current residence
Floresville, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office not only to gain valuable work experience, but also to gain an insight on how much a Congressman and his staff can actually help the constituents of his district.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to continue my education at Texas A&M and receive my degree. I am still unsure of my ultimate career path, but I eventually would like to work for the San Antonio Spurs.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have learned that Congressional staffs are great resources for the community.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy hanging out with friends, watching sports (Aggies, Cowboys, and Spurs), preparing biased sports arguments, playing bingo, the simple things in life, and drinking Promised Land Dairy Chocolate Milk.

8. Anything else you want to share?
“Who you are is God’s gift to you. What you make of yourself is your gift back to God.”



Alec Martinez - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Alec Martinez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
Texas A&M International University, Junior, Political Science/Economics

3. Hometown and current residence:
Laredo, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?:
I love politics and I love my city. I felt this internship would not only teach me a lot, but also allow me to give back to my community.

5. What are your plans following this internship?:
Continuing a career in this field creating positive change.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?:
Running an organization at TAMIU (Culture Exchange), reading, and drinking unhealthy amounts of coffee.

7. Anything else you want to share?
Viva Laredaissance!



Brenda Loera - Laredo District Office

1. Name:
Brenda A. Loera

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:
2015, Texas A&M International University, Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence:
Laredo, Texas-Current residence in Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued and internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office because I wanted to get the experience needed to expand upon the knowledge I acquired thus far at the University. I wanted to get the hands on experience of working in a congressional office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plans following the internship are to finish the classes I have left to graduate with a Political Science degree and keep on seeking more experience along the way to be better prepared for a political science career.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
While interning for Congressman Cuellar I learned a lot from the staffers. I learned a lot about what goes into working in a congressional office and how issues and cases are handled with the constituents which is the most rewarding experience as well. This was my first internship and the knowledge and experience I gained here will help me in my future endeavors.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
My hobbies are reading, writing, singing, spending time outdoors, playing board games and watching movies with my family, and spending time with my sorority sisters. My interests are reading, singing and writing which is something I want to do a lot more as well as learn how to play an instrument such as the guitar or piano.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I am grateful for this great opportunity that was given to me to intern for Congressman Henry Cuellar. This was my first internship and the knowledge and experience I gained will help me in my future endeavors and I appreciate the opportunity.



SPRING 2015

Alec Aguilar - San Antonio District Office
1. Name
Alec-Samual Robert Aguilar

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, University of Texas at San Antonio, Sociology Major.

3. Hometown and current residence
San Antonio, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
To assist veterans with their issues and concerns and was recommended to Congressman Cuellar’s office by the Texas Veterans’ Commission office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
Seek employment within the federal government, primarily with the Department of Homeland Security.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned as an intern on how to manage and work with constituents and other federal agencies to best resolve any lingering issues.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I am interested in maintaining fitness and being healthy to perform at the best of my abilities. I also study medical treatment.

8. Anything else you want to share?
With my background as an intelligence analyst for the Army National Guard, I aspire to work for the Department of Homeland Security or Department of Justice in the National Security Agency, Central Intelligence Agency or Federal Bureau of Investigation to broaden my skills and expand my career.



James Sosa - San Antonio District Office


1. Name:

James M. Sosa

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:

I graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in Government and History.

3. Hometown and current residence:

San Antonio, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office because I wanted to delve more into the world of local and federal politics—hoping to acquire some of the skills that are necessary to be an efficient, faithful public servant to my South Texas community.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

After this internship, I plan to apply to law school and focus my studies on international law and foreign policy.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience in the San Antonio office was actually speaking directly with constituents and working to alleviate some of their concerns and frustrations with various federal agencies. It brought me great joy to bring the constituents of the 28th district some satisfaction with their problems.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

My hobbies include reading, watching Netflix, playing tennis, playing soccer and watching the San Antonio Spurs.

8. Anything else you want to share?

I am very grateful to be part of Congressman Cuellar’s team here in San Antonio, and I hope that I can continue to learn more about the intricacies of politics by working in his congressional office.

Justin Rayome - San Antonio District Office

1. Name
Justin Rayome

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, University of the Incarnate Word, Political Economics

3. Hometown and current residence
Dallas, TX. Currently residing in Alamo Heights, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
To gain a comprehensive knowledge of how our U.S. representatives work to benefit their constituency. To receive hands on experience working in a political office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I am currently in the process of choosing a law school to attend in the fall.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I learned that working with a government agency is a very tedious process. The most rewarding experience of my internship was every time that I was able to close a case in favor of the constituent.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy fitness and nutrition. I am very interested in environmental sustainability, and look to apply my law degree in this field in this field.

Maci Hurely - San Antonio District Office

1. Name

Maci Hurley

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I am currently a graduate Student at the University of Texas at San Antonio. I am pursuing a Masters of Public Administration with a graduate certificate for Nonprofit Leadership and Management.

3. Hometown and current residence
I am originally from San Antonio, TX and am currently residing here until I finish my degree.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I wanted to gain a better understanding on the interworkings of U.S. government and what happens on a daily basis in a congressional office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
My plans are to complete my M.P.A. and then start a career as a public servant or in the nonprofit sector.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
My most rewarding experience has been being able to interact with such a wonderful staff. I have learned so much from their experience and knowledge in the field. I know I will be able to take the skills I have gained working with them and be successful no matter where I go.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
In my spare time I enjoy reading, playing badminton, and ballroom dancing.

Michael Heseltine - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name
Michael Heseltine

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
I graduated in 2014, having studied at the University of Sussex and Georgetown University, with a BA in American History and Politics.

3. Hometown and current residence
I am from Reading, England and currently living in Washington, DC.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I have studied American politics for a long time and always taken a great interest in the workings of Congress. Congressman Cuellar is a very dedicated and hard-working representative and I was very much drawn to the opportunity to see first-hand a political system and a constituency unlike anything I could experience at home in England.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I would love to continue working in United States politics and in Washington DC in particular.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have learned a great deal about the state of Texas and its proud history. I have also been able to see a bipartisan approach to Congressional politics and the spirit of cooperation required to make good, long-lasting policy. I have particularly enjoyed attending briefings and hearings on some of the most pressing issues facing America today, such as border security and economic policy.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I follow soccer and football closely and am a big Manchester United and Patriots fan. I am also an avid guitar enthusiast.

8. Anything else you want to share?
I played football in college as a wide receiver, warming the bench with impressive consistency.


Lilia Abecassis - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name
Lilia Abecassis

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Freshman at the University of Maryland, pursuing a dual-degree in Government/Politics and Art History

3. Hometown and current residence
Irvine, CA

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I am interested in politics, and interning with the Congressman is a great way to see and experience how our political system works firsthand.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
In the future, I would like to intern for the House Judiciary Committee and later pursue a career in corporate law.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The most rewarding experience as an intern is the ability to go sit in on various committee hearings when I am interested in the topic of discussion.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy competing for my school’s Mock Trial team, watching Wes Anderson films, and visiting art museums.

Clarissa Perez - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Clarissa Perez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Senior, St. Augustine High School

3. Hometown and current residence
Laredo, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office because I was interested in the work he does for the community and I wanted to be part of it and be more involved.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
After I finish with my internship and graduate from high school I plan to go and start my first year of college.

6. What are your hobbies or interests?
I enjoy spending my time doing yoga and reading books. I’m interested in pursuing a career in public relations or law.


Allison Kowalczyk - Washington, D.C. Office



1. Name

Allison Kowalczyk


2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a junior at Texas Tech University. I am double majoring in English and German.


3. Hometown and current residence

My hometown is East Hampton, Connecticut, and I currently reside in Kingwood, Texas.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I am always interested in going new places and experiencing new things, and taking part in a congressional internship seemed like a great opportunity to broaden my horizons.


5. What are your plans following this internship?

I plan to return to university and study abroad in Germany in spring of 2016. After I complete my bachelors I plan to move out to California to attend grad school to study film, specifically screenwriting.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I am rather new to Congressman Cuellar’s office; however, I look forward to learning about how press and writing elements are handled. As of now, my best experience has been being welcomed by the staff.


7. What are your hobbies or interests?

I spend a lot of my free time writing short stories or compiling research for characters and storylines. I highly enjoy watching, studying, and analyzing movies and television shows in English, German, and various other languages. I enjoy reading works from H.P. Lovecraft, Thomas Harris, Edgar Allen Poe, and William Shakespeare. I also like to travel, listen to music, and learn other languages.


8. Anything else you want to share?

I think having a phrase that’s close to your heart is important, something that reminds you that even on the hardest days that things are going turn out alright. My phrase is from Shakespeare’s Henry VI, spoken by Gloucester: “And fearless minds climb soonest unto crowns.”


Ke’Yonna Simone Hall - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name

Ke’Yonna Simone Hall

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a junior at the University of North Texas, currently pursuing a double major in Criminal Justice (Bachelor of Science) and Sociology (Bachelor of Arts).


3. Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Dallas, TX and I currently reside in Denton, TX where I attend school.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

After interning in both George Allen Courts and Bickel & Brewer Law Firm, I discovered that I have a passion for public service, law and law enforcement. I was quite impressed by the experiences that I had which helped shape my interest in the legal field. I chose to pursue an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office because I wanted to further expand my experiences outside of those settings and learn more from the people in his office- in the heart of the U.S. - Congress.


5. What are your plans following this internship?

Following my internship, I plan to finish my last year of undergraduate studies at the University of North Texas. From there I plan to apply for Master’s degree programs in Foreign policy, International Affairs, or Business Marketing and then pursue a J.D. It is my ultimate goal to gain a career in a public service capacity within the state or federal government.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have been able to gain real-world experience by actually applying methods and theories I have learned in the classroom, while learning from the professionals working around me. By being exposed to various fields on a larger scale than the internships I have already held, I have been able to develop new skills and enhance others. This internship has enriched my leadership skills by challenging me to lead in a setting outside of my norm. For starters, I have been given more responsibility which has provided me with additional skills such as time management, public speaking, and critical thinking. Lastly, the exposure to current policy areas and researching current issues has helped me to narrow my interests and aid in my social advocacy goals. The most rewarding experience has been being extended the invitation to attend hearings and briefings with the congressman.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

I enjoy writing, reading, spending time with family, and doing volunteer work for organizations that are meaningful to me.

8. Anything else you want to share?

Working on Capitol Hill has been a life changing experience and I am very appreciative of Congressman Cuellar, his staff, and UNT NTDC for the opportunity to have had this opportunity. I will take the knowledge I’ve gained and the experiences I’ve had and work toward my future endeavors



FALL 2014

Kristen Perez - Mission District Office

1. Name
Kristen Perez

2. Year in college, name of college, and major
Sophomore, University of Texas Pan-American, Political Science major

3. Hometown and current residence
McAllen, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
Politics has always been something that has caught my interest. I want to be able to pursue a career in politics after I finish getting my degrees. I felt this would help me to gain more experience in my field of interest.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I plan to continue with school at The University of Texas Pan- American soon to be The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and hope to graduate with my bachelors in two years. I then would like to further my education and attend Law school

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
I have learned a lot while interning in Congressman Cuellar’s Mission District Office. I have had the opportunity to see all the hard work that goes in to the Congressional Office, the office does their best to help every constituent that walks through the door. They also are very involved with the community which is something that I admire.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
I love being able to give back to my community, I enjoy volunteering for different events. I also enjoy spending time with family, bike riding, and reading.

8. Anything else you want to share?
This has been a wonderful experience for me. I have learned new skills that will help me to continue to grow in the professional field.


Marlyn Ramirez - Mission District Office 
1. Name:
Marlyn Ramirez


2. Year in college, name of college, and major:

2016, University of Texas Pan-American, Criminal Justice

3. Hometown and Current Residence:

Pharr, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s Office?

I wanted to gain experience within my major, I was tired of the classroom environment where the material was just through the textbooks. This opportunity has been in eye opener on how much more things happen within the field that many of us students are not aware of.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

My plans are to hopefully find a full time job where I can apply the ne

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
The experience that has been rewarding within the intern is helping out the community. One event that really stands out is the shoe drive with The Bucker Foundation the feeling of helping out families is something that is unexplainable.

7. What are your hobbies or interest?

Hobbies are working out and being with my family.

Louise Bentsen - Washington, D.C. Office

1.     Name

 Louise Bentsen

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major 

I have a BA in History from Rice University and have just completed a Masters of Science in Conflict Studies at The London School of Economics.

3.     Hometown and current residence

I currently reside in Washington, DC, which is also my hometown.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I was intrigued by the Congressman’s educational background and involvement in foreign affairs. I was also curious about how a congressional office worked.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

I hope to work for an international organization, government agency, or NGO that deals with post-conflict reconstruction and democratization.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

As an intern you are given a lot of responsibility, entrusted to carry out variety of tasks, and held to a high standard. Interning with Congressman Cuellar has helped me to gain confidence in myself and in my work. 

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? 

I enjoy cooking and traveling.


Kathryn Childers - Washington, DC Office 

1.     Name

Kathryn Childers

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major

Graduated in 2013, University of Aberdeen in Scotland, International Relations and Politics.

3.     Hometown and current residence

Houston, TX. Washington D.C.

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have always wanted to be involved with government in some way and interning in the Congressman’s office provided the perfect avenue to experience the heart of our political system.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

I am actively seeking a job in a member’s office or on committee staff.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience was the opportunity to attend the Washington Post’s Cyber Security Summit. Cyber security is an issue area I have extreme interest in and having the opportunity to hear what experts in the field have to say first hand was amazing! While interning in Congressman Cuellar’s office I have also been able to learn about the many different issues that affect Texas and its 28th district, from cattle to immigration. The learning opportunity provided in this office has been invaluable.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? 

I am a very avid reader, from the classics to biographies or a good sci-fi adventure! I have also been thoroughly enjoying exploring my new city and discovering all it has to offer.

8.      Anything else you want to share?

I will never be able to fully express my gratitude to Congressman Cuellar or his professional staff for the amazing opportunities presented to me as an intern each and every day I have been here. This internship has been one of the most interesting and rewarding experiences! Anyone who is considering a congressional internship should absolutely go for it!

Jessica Castillo - Mission District Office 

1.     Name:

Jessica Castillo    

2.     Year in college, name of college, and major:

I am a senior at The University of Texas – Pan American.

My major is in Criminal Justice with a minor in Psychology

3.     Hometown and current residence:

I currently reside in Edinburg, Texas, which is also my hometown

4.     Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

With my degree plan I needed to do an internship with any office that fell into the category of my major. It just so happened that the Congressman Henry Cuellar’s office was looking for an intern. I am glad that they gave me the opportunity to pursue my internship with them because I have learned a great deal.

5.     What are your plans following this internship?

My plans after my internship are to graduate in December and pursue a career helping juveniles.

6.     What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

 I learned that they help constituents to the best of their abilities and always direct them to someone that can help them with any issue that the constituent may be facing. An experience that I was able to obtain was going out to Peñitas with the Buckner Foundation and providing children with new shoes and backpacks filled with school supplies. The looks on the children’s faces was just very rewarding.

7.     What are your hobbies or interests? 

My interests are being at home reading a good book, spending lots of time with family.

8.     Anything else you want to share?

I would like to add to other students pursuing a career to take on an internship, even if your degree plan does not require one, because it is an experience that you will obtain.

 


Austin Martinez - Laredo District Office

1. Name
Austin Christopher Martinez

2. Year in College, Name of College, and Major
I am a Senior, Political Science major at Texas A&M International University

3. Hometown and current residence
My hometown is Galveston, but I currently live in Laredo, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?
As a Political Science major, I carry a vested interest in our nation’s political environment. I figured first-hand experience with some hard work seemed like the route to take. Especially, being at the cross roads in deciding what I want to do.

5. What are your plans following this internship?
I definitely want to explore other areas in government before I graduate in 2015. After graduation, I intend to pursue a Master’s Degree in trade.

6. What did you learn as an intern for congressman cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?
Working with the Congressman’s media team has been awesome. When I entered the internship I had a vague idea of what a Congressman’s office does. After a few weeks in, my perception has completely changed. The congressman’s office spreads wide, holding multiple operations each day. A lot goes into the operation process, but it is great to see people happy in what they do. My most rewarding experience so far is being able to obtain career-related experience.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?
Biking, trailing, staying active, and politics.

8. Anything else to want to share?
This opportunity has brought clarity in deciding for future aspirations. I would definitely recommend to those who are unsure in what they want to do to get out and volunteer or intern for someone in the field you may be interested in.


Eduardo Mendoza - Laredo District Office



1. Name: Eduardo Mendoza

2. Year in college, name of college, and major: I am a senior at Texas A&M International University. My major is Business Administration with a concentration in management.

3. Hometown and current residence: I currently live in Laredo, TX, which is also my hometown.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office? As a business student, I have not had much exposure to the field of government. As an aspiring attorney, I felt it would be beneficial to get hands on experience working at a congressional office—and that’s exactly what the internship has provided me with.

5. What are your plans following this internship? After the internship, I plan to finish up the semester and graduate in December 2014; in addition, I am applying to law school for the fall of 2015, and intend to specialize in energy law.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience? The most rewarding experience has been the amount of inspiration drawn from working at the congressional office; being constantly surrounded by the product of hard work is something I look forward to each and every day. The internship has also provided insight on the way a congressional office runs, as well as the amount of work needed on a daily basis.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? I enjoy writing, reading, spending time with family and friends, and working out.

8. Anything else you want to share? The type of knowledge the internship provided has been unique—a knowledge attainable only by experience, and not by reading textbooks. With this said, I strongly encourage students to apply for internships, for they are rich in opportunity and tacit knowledge.


Jenny Tavarez - Washington, D.C. Office 


 

1.       Name: Jenny Bridgett Tavarez

2.       Year in college, name of college, and major 

Senior, University of Texas, BS-Textile and Apparel

Cum Laude, Sul Ross State, BA- Administrative Systems and Business Tech 2010

Certificate, Nantong University, China- Product Development

3.       Hometown and current residence

Fort Stockton, Texas

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I am a Global Scholar at the Congressional Hispanic Leadership Institute. Part of the program is that we do an internship with a member of Congress. I was fortunate enough that Congressman Henry Cuellar is Vice Chairman of the CHLI organization. Being from Texas I love being able to serve my community.

5.       What are your plans following this internship?

As part of the CHLI program the second half of my internship is with a Corporate Entity. 

6.       What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have been able to apply what I have learned in my classes at my internship. I have enjoyed all the opportunities that I have been granted. One highlight was an interview with the Congressman for Telemundo. I was privileged to be behind the scenes; it was an amazing experience.

7.       What are your hobbies or interests? 

I have a strong interest and love for the arts. One of my strong interests is fashion design. I have been able to participate in many fashion shows in Austin, Texas. Aside from fashion, my interest for the film community has grown into a serious interest.

8.       Anything else you want to share?

I appreciate the opportunity to intern at Congressman Henry Cuellar’s D.C. office. It has been a privilege to serve the great state of Texas and I will continue to be a leader in my community. I also encourage others to continue their education and take the time to intern at any local office.


Paige Muehlenkamp - Washington, D.C. Office

 

1.       Name

Paige Muehlenkamp

2.       Year in college, name of college, and major 

Graduate student at Texas Tech University

Masters in Public Administration- Nonprofit Management Concentration

3.       Hometown and current residence

I grew up in Janesville, Wisconsin, but I currently go to school in Lubbock, Texas.

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have had a passion for government ever since I interned with a state representative in high school. Over time I have discovered that I want a career in public service, so when my university invited me to apply for a Washington D.C. internship I jumped at the chance to expand my experience working with government. Congressman Cuellar’s office was especially appealing to me due to his dedication to education and bipartisanism

5.       What are your plans following this internship?

I will be returning to Texas Tech for the spring and fall semester to finish my master’s degree. After graduation, I hope to work in Washington D.C. either on the Hill or with an internationally focused nonprofit organization.

6.       What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

                I have learned a lot about taking advantage of the opportunities that come your way. I have been lucky enough to go to some great events like hearing the President of Ukraine address Congress and a NASA event featuring a 3D printer. I learned always to say yes to experiences because you never know what you will see or who you will meet.

7.       What are your hobbies or interests? 

I am a big history buff and I love to travel. In my spare time I like to play softball. 

 

Hibbah Kaileh - Washington, D.C. Intern

1.      Name

Hibbah Kaileh

2.       Year in college, name of college, and major 

I am a junior at University of North Texas majoring in International Security and Diplomacy, with a minor in Arabic Language.

3.       Hometown and current residence

Frisco, Texas, and I am in Denton for my undergraduate career.

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship in Congressman Cuellar’s office to experience what it would be like to work in a congressional office and in the political field in general.

5.       What are your plans following this internship?

Following my internship, I plan to finish studying at UNT. From there I hope to pursue a career in foreign relations, particularly regarding the Middle Eastern region.

6.       What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

Through this internship I have learned the value of taking initiative, and of how much every citizen can do to be involved and make a difference. I’ve also learned just how much thought and effort goes into every decision and action being made on The Hill. The most rewarding experience so far has been helping out with projects in the office and seeing the tangible ways that it impacts the district.

7.       What are your hobbies or interests? 

I enjoy reading, travelling, sky diving, and any type of outdoor activity.

 

Susana Dominguez - Washington, D.C. Office

1.       Name

Susana Dominguez

2.       Year in college, name of college, and major 

Sophomore, American University, International Studies and Economics

3.       Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Laredo, Texas and I currently reside in Washington, DC. 

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office to gain further knowledge on the legislative process and to see how Capitol Hill functions. As a constituent of the Congressman’s district, I also wanted to see how my own district is taken care of.

5.       What are your plans following this internship?

After my internship, I would like to finish my Bachelors degree and take the LSAT. I hope to one day work at an intergovernmental organization like the International Criminal Court.

6.       What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience in Congressman Cuellar’s office has been assisting constituents on a daily bases.  In addition, learning about the border crisis and having the opportunity to learn how this issue is being managed has been very exciting.

7.       What are your hobbies or interests? 

I enjoy dancing, horseback riding, reading, and sightseeing around DC.

8.        Anything else you want to share?

I am very grateful for having the opportunity to intern at Congressman Cuellar’s office.  Each staff member has taught me that through hard work and dedication true change can be made. 

Lauren Tucci - Washington, D.C. Office


1.       Name:  Lauren Tucci

2.       Year in college: Sophomore

Name of college: Georgetown University School of Foreign Service

Major: Science, Technology, and International Affairs

3.       Hometown: Houston, TX

Current Residence: Washington, DC

4.       Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued a congressional internship in order to learn how my academic studies could be applied on a global, national, and local level, and in order to witness first-hand how government works. Once I began researching the possibility of a congressional internship, I came across news articles praising Congressman Cuellar for his bi-partisanship and integrity. It was this positive press that led me to Congressman Cuellar’s office specifically.

5.       What are your plans following this internship?

I plan to continue my studies and narrow down my focus within my major in order to prepare for future internships and jobs. 

6.       What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

 I’ve especially enjoyed writing letters for the Congressman and attending congressional briefings on topics that interest me. Additionally, it’s been a blast getting to know all of my coworkers, and mingle with our nation’s movers and shakers. 

7.       What are your hobbies or interests? 

I enjoy traveling, trying new restaurants and foods, learning new languages, keeping up with current events, chatting, running, and camping.

8.        Anything else you want to share?

So far, I’ve really enjoyed my work for Congressman Cuellar and am happy to serve my home state in this way!


SUMMER 2014


Bret Morace - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name

Bret Morace

2. Year in college, name of college, and major 

Senior, Texas A&M University, Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence

Waller, TX; College Station, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship in a D.C. congressional office to see how a congressional office worked up close and to see if I would be interested in working on Capitol Hill after graduating. Congressman Cuellar’s office made sense as I was born in Laredo and still have family in the 28th District.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

After my internship, I plan on studying for the LSAT, finishing my last year at Texas A&M, and starting law school next fall.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have learned that a congressional office is a very busy place, with little down time. My most rewarding experience has been working with our grants coordinator and trying to help find federal funding for projects in the 28thDistrict.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?  

In my free time I enjoy watching sports, reading, politics, and hiking.

Pearl Cruz - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name

Pearl D. Cruz

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a senior at Texas Tech University. I will be graduating with a B.A. in Psychology on December, 2014.

3. Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Carrizo Springs, TX. I currently live in Lubbock, TX.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office because I knew that working on Capitol Hill would allow me to gain a further understanding of the legislative process. Remaining informed of Congressman Cuellar’s views only confirmed that Congressman Cuellar holds the same moral and values for society that I do. The opportunity to learn from Congressman Cuellar and his staff is one that I knew I wanted to pursue. 

5. What are your plans following this internship?

After my internship on Capitol Hill, I will return to Texas Tech University to complete my last undergraduate semester. Throughout my last undergraduate semester, I intend to finish up my applications to law school. During the spring semester, I will either apply for an internship at the Capitol in Austin, TX, or hopefully return to Washington, DC.  

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience as an intern for Congressman Cuellar has been the opportunities I have had to speak with the Congressman. During each conversation with Congressman Cuellar, he has ensured that I am learning while working on Capitol Hill. Coming from a small town, and learning that Congressman Cuellar and I share a humble beginning, he continues to inspire me to work even harder towards my future endeavors.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

I have always enjoyed remaining physically active in sports such as basketball, softball, flag football, and volleyball to name a few. My current interests have been spending time with my newborn niece and traveling.

8. Anything else you want to share?

Working on Capitol Hill has been a life changing experience that I thank Texas Tech University, Congressman Cuellar and his staff, and the support of my family and friends for. I hope to one day return to Washington, D.C. Until then, I will take the knowledge I’ve gained and the experiences I’ve had this summer to work tirelessly towards my future endeavors.  

Joanna Heep - San Antonio District Office

1. Name

Joanna Heep

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a senior at Texas Christian University, double majoring in Political Science and Sociology.

3. Hometown and current residence

I was born and raised in San Antonio, TX, but currently live in Fort Worth, TX for my undergrad.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I have always been interested in the government and wanted to experience the internal functioning of a congressional office firsthand.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

I will return to TCU to finish up my last semester, and then I plan on attending law school next fall.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My internship was spent aiding constituents who were having issues with the Department of Veteran’s Affairs. Our veterans deserve the best, so having the opportunity to assist them with their troubles was easily one of the most rewarding experiences. Also, I learned that Congressman Henry Cuellar has a great team behind him!

7. What are your hobbies or interests?


I enjoy watching and playing sports (Go Spurs!), being active, and keeping up to date with politics through the news.



Jose Rangel - San Antonio District Office


1. Name:

Jose Rangel

2. Year in college, name of college, and major.

I am attending UTSA and majoring in political science.

3. Hometown and current residence:

I was born and raised in San Antonio, TX.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I pursued an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office to gain knowledge on policy making and how constituents are helped.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

I am finishing up my last semester at UTSA after this internship.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The most rewarding experience during my intern was seeing how Congressman Cuellar was able to handle the border crisis.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

I keep myself up to date on political issues and world events. I get away from politics by canoeing on the river and fishing.



Rolando Medrano - Laredo District Office

1. Name

My name is Rolando Medrano.


2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I am a junior at Texas A&M International University studying for a bachelor’s degree in Political Science with a minor in Dance.


3. Hometown and current residence

I currently reside in Laredo, Texas, my hometown of 20 years.


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office? 

I decided to pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar to gain a further knowledge of the “behind-the-scenes” realm of the political world.

In a sense, the internship is to prepare me for the upcoming dreams and goals I have for my political and educational ambitions.


5. What are your plans following this internship?

Following the internship, I plan to finish my bachelor’s degree, then intern at F.E.M.A. in 2015 & The White House in 2016.

After the internships, I plan to attend Texas Tech University for a Master’s degree in Foreign Policy and attend the University of Houston for a Doctorate’s degree in International Affairs.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience? 

As an intern, I experienced a variety of different individuals with different personalities. As a result, I learned to create a stronger “backbone” to preserve my integrity.


7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

As of 2014, I am a Zumba Instructor, a dancer for a local hip-hop/modern group in Laredo, Texas and for T.A.M.I.U., and an activist for March of Dimes, It Gets Better, Relay for Life, Down Syndrome Awareness, and H.I.V. Awareness.
I enjoy swimming, running, meditation, traveling, and debating in my spare time.



Selina Lugo - Laredo District Office

1. Name: 

Selina J. Lugo


2. Year in college, name of college, and major 

Second year of Graduate School, Texas A&M International University, Political Thought and History (concentration in Political Science)


3. Hometown and current residence

Laredo, Texas


4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office? 

I sought experience in a political environment and because I'd always heard complimentary remarks about Congressman Cuellar, I felt a chance at working in his Laredo Office would be a perfect starting point in my career.


5. What are your plans following this internship? 

I will continue with my second year of Graduate School at TAMIU. My follow-up plans consist of attending law school although my school of choice is not yet set in stone.


6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience? 

I found working as a Congressional Intern highly rewarding, specifically in regards to the assistance I was able to provide particular veterans. Such assistance consisted of opening up channels of communication between the veteran and the appropriate department. I learned that with both hard work and the willingness to be of service to District 28's constituents, much can get done, and does. I feel privileged to have been able to work under many superb examples such as those I encountered at the Laredo District Office, as well as others I communicated with via telephone in the San Antonio & D.C. offices, and Congressman Cuellar, of course.


7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

My interests are very much news-related. I read just about everything I can get my hands on concerning current/political events or just about anything information-related. Along with what I previously mentioned, I also enjoy watching education or historical documentaries. I am also an avid drum set musician and play as much as I can in my spare time.


Ayssa Salinas - Mission District Office 

1. Name:

Ayssa Salinas

2. Year in college, name of college, and major:

Freshman, University of Texas of Austin, Government   

3. Hometown and current residence:

McAllen, TX.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I’ve always had an interest in politics and the way our government works. I love the theories and philosophies that have been the foundation for what our federal government is today and I had always wanted to see first-hand what goes on in a politician’s office. When I was notified that an internship opportunity was available near me, I knew it would be an amazing experience to witness the relationship between a congressman and their represented community.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

I plan to begin my first year at UT Austin and continue to work towards my Bachelor’s degree in Government; then pursue a law degree.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The most rewarding experience has been seeing how many people get helped on a daily basis and all that goes on behind the scenes when it comes to how congressmen and women help their districts and try to represent them in the best way possible.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?

On my free time I love camping and fishing and just generally appreciating the outdoors.  I also enjoy attending concerts and reading fiction novels.

8. Anything else you want to share?

I am very grateful I was granted this opportunity and will take all that I have learned and experienced from these few weeks and utilize it in the best way possible in my future academic and career goals.


Ernest Baca - Mission District Office

1. Name

Ernest Ethen Baca

2. Year in college, name of college, and major  

Senior, University of Texas - Pan American, Political Science

3. Hometown and current residence

Edinburg, Texas, Edinburg, Texas

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

Since my father was Depute Attaché for HSI (neé ICE) at the embassy in Brasilia, Brazil, I have always been interested in working for the federal government. When Allan Fisher told me about the opportunity for a congressional internship I leapt at it; and I am grateful that I received the position.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

After this internship I plan on continuing my education and eventually taking my Foreign Service Officer Exam and potentially work for the State Department.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The most rewarding experience about this internship is having the opportunity to meet and help people.  I have also learned that no matter who is your local member of congress they, and their staff, will help you.

7. What are your hobbies or interests?  

I enjoy reading, cooking, hanging out with my Fraternity brothers, traveling, and taking care of my cat, Chairman Meow, and dog, Pumpkin.

8. Anything else you want to share?

Rush Phi Kappa Theta!



Azra Siddiqi - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name

Azra Siddiqi

2. Year in college, name of college, and major

I received my Bachelors in Political Science from UT Austin in 2008 and a J.D. from South Texas College of Law in 2012. 

3. Hometown and current residence 

My hometown is Plano, Texas and I currently reside in Washington D.C.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I chose to pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar because I wanted to learn more about how the legislative system worked.  I also wanted to gain a better understanding of how to utilize my law degree in the policy field sector

5. What are your plans following this internship?

After my internship ends, I would like to attain a job here on Capitol Hill and continue to work within the policy sector.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

I have been very fortunate to have learned so much during my internship.  I have learned about how the Appropriations Committee operates and how the State and Foreign Operation subcommittee works. I've also had the opportunity to witness several different types of committee meetings and understand their importance in trying to attain a positive outcome for the nation.  I have also learned about the issues that several constituents from Congressman Cuellar's district have had to deal with, especially with the current UAC Border Crisis and the Eagle Ford Shale area.  It was also very interesting to learn how to research legislation, the ways of how different policies work and their long lasting effects.  I also gained knowledge on how federal agencies work and the many grant programs available for the general public to access. Lastly, it was very interesting to observe how the office works and the amount of time and energy everyone spent to attain the best possible outcome for not just the Constituents but for the nation as a whole.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

I enjoy cooking, reading, politics, watching soccer & football and traveling.

8. Anything else you want to share?

I’ve had a wonderful learning experience here and I hope to utilize everything I have learned in my next career opportunity.


SPRING 2014

Katy Jones - Washington, D.C. Office 

1. Name

Katy Jones

2. Year in school or age and name of college

Age 22, Graduate of Texas Tech University

3. Hometown and current residence

Snyder, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I decided to pursue a congressional internship to gain a more in depth understanding of the U.S. political system. I also wanted to experience living in a large city, since I’m from a small town originally. When I shared my interests, political views, and writing-oriented career goals with my internship coordinator at Texas Tech, she matched me with Congressman Cuellar’s office.  She hit the nail on the head, because I couldn’t ask to be placed in a better office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

I plan on moving to Austin to pursue a career in technical communication. I’m currently submitting applications to Texas state government agencies and private-sector IT companies in Austin.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My favorite part about interning for Congressman Cuellar was having the opportunity to draft letters, talking points, and more over a diverse range of topics. Interning in D.C. really put into perspective how much effort the Congressman and his staff put into everything they produce. They’ve given me a standard of excellence to aspire to.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

I’m passionate about anything involving art or design. I’ve spent more weekends at the National Gallery of Art than I’m proud of, and I’m most distraught when I’ve sharpened my indigo Prismacolor pencil to oblivion.


Emilia Cowan - Washington, D.C. Office

1. Name

Emilia Cowan

2.  Year in school or age and name of college

Age 21, Senior at the University of North Texas  

3. Hometown and current residence

Carrollton, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

Following my return from my study abroad trip in Amman, Jordan I began searching for another opportunity to learn more about international and domestic security issues. Working with my university they matched me with Congressman Cuellar’s Office. Congressman Cuellar’s work on the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security presented a unique opportunity to learn about security issues facing Texas, and I am grateful to have been placed in this office.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

Upon returning home, I will focus on completing my last year of undergraduate studies. I will also be searching for a law enforcement internship, possibly with Homeland Security Investigations or the FBI. Post graduate, I plan on pursuing a career in law enforcement at either the state or federal level.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

My most rewarding experience will probably be working with my fellow interns to research and draft appropriation materials for Appropriation hearings. This internship has provided invaluable insight into the inner workings of our Nation’s government. Working with his staff, here in DC, has given me the opportunity to research a wide array of topics, as well as, learn the value of teamwork. I could have never anticipated the amount of compassion and effort given to each issue, and I will take this focus with me as I continue my studies and later my career.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

My favorite hobby is collecting comic books.  


Nadia Islam - San Antonio District Office

1. Name

Nadia Islam

2. Year in school or age and name of college

Graduate student at UTSA, Public Administration

3. Hometown and current residence

My hometown is Dhaka, Bangladesh. I currently reside in San Antonio, Texas.

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I wanted to find out more about the local role the congressional office plays, which brought me to constituent services. I knew plenty about how the legislative process works, but not enough about how the office interacts with constituents and federal institutions on a daily basis.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

Following the internship I plan on finishing my graduate degree and pursuing a job working for the City of San Antonio.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

The internship has taught me to respect and appreciate public servants infinitely more. It has also shown me how far an inspiring and supportive boss can go in fostering a wonderful work atmosphere.  

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

I love travelling, reading, and scuba diving. Currently I’m on a mission to see and do everything San Antonio has to offer, and then expand that mission to all of Texas. 

Jessica Cisneros - Washington, D.C. Office 

1. Name

Jessica I. Cisneros

2. Year in school or age and name of college

Age 20, Junior at the University of Texas at Austin

3. Hometown and current residence

Laredo, TX/Austin, TX

4. Why did you pursue an internship with Congressman Cuellar’s office?

I wanted to come to D.C. and experience first-hand what the legislative process entails while working somewhere that impacted my hometown directly. I also wanted to learn what is it like to be a member of Congress and see if running for and serving in public office is something that I could see myself doing in the future.

5. What are your plans following this internship?

This summer, I will be going back home to Laredo to continue my internship at the Laredo District Office and study for the LSAT. After finishing my undergraduate degree (B.A. in Government Honors), I plan to go to law school and then become involved in public service.

6. What did you learn as an intern for Congressman Cuellar or what has been your most rewarding experience?

(Despite wide-spread opinion, Members of Congress are very hard workers!) Experiencing it first-hand, I saw that congressional offices—especially District 28—are constantly putting in long hours to represent the district’s interests and to serve constituents. My most rewarding experience has been able to be a part of a great team that always keeps the best interests of constituents in mind. I learned about the various resources that are readily available, just waiting for constituents to tap into them. I enjoyed working with the Congressman’s media team to help spread the word about them—from health insurance workshops to scholarship opportunities to small business informational videos.

7. What are your hobbies or interests? 

I like to be very involved in school organizations and outside activities. For example, next semester, I’ll be teaching English as a Second Language at an immigrant refugee home in Austin, TX.  

I also consider myself a very creative person. I love to design shirts, flyers, and any type of graphics. Arts and crafts projects are my favorite, too! They get my mind off of things, so it’s a great stress reliever. Plus, you end up with something really cool that you get to show off! :-)

8. Anything else you want to share?

I’m going to miss everyone in the DC office! But I’m excited to go home to spend time with my family and friends and enjoy the nice Texas weather—all while continuing to learn more and help the people of District 28 through the Laredo office. Best of both worlds!

Allan Fischer-Garcia - Mission District Office Intern 

Allan Fisher-Garcia is a senior at the University of Texas Pan American and has interned in Congressman Cuellar's Mission District Office since 2012.  Allan is a native of Mission Texas and decided to pursue an internship with the Congressman because he wanted to be part of the efforts to make a difference in his hometown.  He hopes to intern in Washington, D.C. in the near future.  His biggest passion in life is traveling and he loves to meet new people and experience new cultures.  His hobbies include playing golf, attending music festivals, and spending time with his family and Boston terrier.  


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