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CHCI selects Latina students to gain Capitol Hill experience through Congressional Internship Program

WASHINGTON, DC, July 2011: The Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute (CHCI), one of the nation’s premier Latino youth leadership development and educational organization, is hosting Marisela Castaneda of Detroit, a student at the University of San Francisco, and Ana Wolken of East Lansing, MI, a student at Michigan State University,  along with 29 other university students from across the United States for its nationally recognized and highly competitive Congressional Internship Program (CIP).

The CHCI Interns have been assigned to congressional offices on Capitol Hill for a period of eight weeks from June to August to learn first-hand about the nation’s legislative process and issues pending before the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate.

Marisela Castaneda

“The CHCI internship is providing me with the opportunity to explore how architecture, when combined with policy, can create positive change, improving the quality of life for citizens in the global community,” said Castaneda.  “I will use the experience I gain from this internship to serve as a mentor and an example for the youth in my community.”  She is double majoring in architecture and community design and is currently placed with the Office of Representative Hansen Clarke.


“This internship allows me to continue affecting positive change beyond Michigan’s border,” added Wolken.  “The CHCI internship is providing me with the leadership training, knowledge and tools to enhance and inspire my future career in politics.”  She is majoring in social relations and policy and is currently placed with the Office of Representative Raul Grijalva.

The 2011 class of CHCI Summer Interns represents 11 different Hispanic ethnic backgrounds and is pursuing 19 different fields of study for their bachelor's degrees. “This year’s summer interns represent the diversity and vast potential of the Latino community,” said Esther Aguilera, CHCI President & CEO.  “CHCI is committed to providing unmatched public policy experience and leadership training for Hispanic youth to create a workforce pipeline to positions on Capitol Hill and in public policy.”

Interns are responsible for conducting extensive legislative research, monitoring day-to-day hearings, managing constituent communications and assisting with general policy matters. Additionally, interns participate in weekly CHCI leadership development sessions, engage in policy discussions and meet with corporate representatives, national elected officials and foreign dignitaries.

CHCI’s internship program provides all participants with housing, roundtrip transportation to and from Washington, D.C. and a $2,500 stipend.

Ana Wolken


To complete the program, participants are also required to work on a collaborative community service project that serves the local Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.  This year’s community service project will focus on building a home with Habitat for Humanity.


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Revised: 07/26/11 12:20:56 -0700.





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