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Nicole Cathcart develops a new network

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Seven PCC students are working as interns for various state legislators in Salem this session. The internships, established by the college to give interested students experience in government, are helping to broaden their skill sets as well as build awareness of the college with state leaders. Below is a profile of one of the interesting interns.

Nicole Cathcart

Age: 41.

Area of Study: Political Science.

Campus: Cascade Campus.

Hometown: Northeast Portland.

Who are you an intern for and what are the things you do for them?

Rep. Michael Dembrow. I mostly observe committee hearings and some constituent meetings.

How did you hear about this opportunity, and why did you apply for it?

I heard about this opportunity from my instructor in a political science class. The week before it was announced, I told my husband that I want as many internship opportunities as possible before I achieve my bachelors degree. I said “I wish PCC did political science internships!” I believe these internships will help me to make many professional contacts as well as narrow down the whole political field for me. I need to determine my area of interest.

What has been your favorite moment to date (i.e. an event, meeting somebody…etc)?

My favorite moment was meeting Secretary Of State Kate Brown. She is a dynamic woman!

Is there something you have learned you didn’t know before about the legislative process or about the legislators themselves?

What I learned about the legislative process is that larger states have a professionalized, or a hybrid State Legislature. Oregon and other smaller states have a “citizen legislature,” meaning the Representatives have full time jobs elsewhere. And, when I told my friend I was going to intern for Rep. Dembrow, he said, “Professor Dembrow?” My friend didn’t know that Instructor Dembrow was a Representative, while I didn’t know he was a teacher at our school!

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