As an Agriculture in Society major at Iowa State University, Payton Sash expects, and hopes for, a career that will allow her to represent farm interests in government circles, interacting with politicians, agriculture leaders and lobbyists.
Her current stint as an summer intern in the Waterloo office of Sen. Charles Grassley is a great first step toward that goal, she says.
Sash, a 2017 Union graduate who was the 2016 Benton County Fair Queen, saw Grassley’s announcement about the internship opportunity on Twitter. She applied for the position and will spend the next several weeks working with full-time staff in the Senator’s Waterloo office.
After returning from ISU for the summer, Sash was an intern in the Benton County Extension Office, helping prepare for and work at the County Fair. She had a day or two to relax between ending her internship at the Extension and going to work at the Grassley’s office. She will have a similarly brief amount of down time at the end of her current internship to prepare to return to ISU for her sophomore year.
“The best part of my internship is that I have been able to hear what people have to say and listen to their concerns and see how the process works to help them,” she says. “I think that is really fascinating. I really enjoy hearing what people have to say across Iowa and the nation.”
As an intern, Sash also answers phone calls from constituents, and helps process paperwork concerning issues and problems citizens have shared with Grassley’s office. But her favorite part comes when she travels with staff members to meet with citizens and hear what people have to say.
“The communications aspect of this job has been great, seeing the back-and-forth,” she says.
Next week, Sash will have the opportunity to travel with Grassleyto northwest Iowa, to a public listening post session in Emmetsburg, at the Palo Alto County Courthouse.
“I’m very excited to get the chance to travel with Sen. Grassley,” she says. “There is much I would like to ask him about during this election cycle.”
The summer internship program lasts approximately six weeks; it will keep Sash busy until it’s time to return to ISU for her sophomore year.
Just a few weeks into the internship, Sash says she encourages others to consider participating in the program.
“I would definitely encourage people to do this,” she says. “It is a great opportunity to get my foot in the door and see how this process works, to see what day-to-day activities take place. This is a great internship coming out of my freshman year, and a really great stepping stone into more with other organizations in the future.”
See a link about Grassley’s internship program HERE.