Hala Abdel-Jaber | UT El Paso
U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security
Hala is a senior at The University of Texas at El Paso, majoring in international politics and minoring in history. On campus, Hala is involved in several organizations including serving as Public Relations Vice President for Alpha Xi Delta Women's Fraternity. Last fall, she interned as a law clerk for the Texas Civil Rights Project, researching various fields of law currently affecting people in her community. Her future goals include attending law school and becoming involved in international policy and affairs.
Melina Acosta | UT San Antonio
Melina is a senior psychology major at The University of Texas at San Antonio. As an undergraduate researcher, her work has focused on the development of measures for suicide risk, depression, and anxiety. She is the founder and president of the UTSA chapter of Active Minds, a national non-profit organization for mental health awareness and suicide prevention on college campuses. She also serves on the national Student Advisory Committee for Active Minds, and as Director of the Student Health Advisory Committee with the UTSA Student Government Association. When she is not studying or sleeping, Melina enjoys trying out new restaurants, discovering new music, writing poetry, and spending time with family and friends.
Mark Albin | UT Austin
Office of U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady
Mark is pursuing a bachelor's degree in finance at The University of Texas at Austin. Recently, Mark was an intern with Dimensional Fund Advisors, which specializes applying financial research to investment methodologies for institutional and wealth management clients. Mark is a leader in The University Securities Investment Team, which won most outstanding business organization two out of the last four years. His interests include college football, cooking, and leading a jazz quartet.
Kubra Babaturk | UT Austin
Middle East Institute
Kubra is a student at The University of Texas at Austin, pursuing a degree in international relations and global studies with minors in Middle Eastern studies and Arabic. She has been a Next Generation Brumley Scholar, where she conducted research for publication and interned in Istanbul multiple times working on English-Turkish translations. After graduation, Kubra is eager to pursue higher education in comparative legal studies, looking to empower local and global communities in governing themselves.
Stephen Badger | UT Dallas
U.S. House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology
Stephen is a junior and Eugene McDermott Scholar at The University of Texas at Dallas. He is studying electrical engineering with a minor in political science. On campus, Stephen has led his university's Quizbowl Association and Fencing Club. He is passionate about science and technology issues, particularly regarding electronic communication, and has completed internships with both government and industry. A travel lover, Stephen traveled across Europe last fall learning German. After graduation, Stephen plans to complete graduate school and pursue his interests in engineering and policy.
Brigit Benestante | UT Austin
U.S. Department of State, Office of Press & Media Relations
Brigit is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in journalism and government. On campus, Brigit served as the editor-in-chief of the Texas Undergraduate Law Review and as a member of both the University Democrats and Hook the Vote. She interned at the Texas Capitol as well as VOCES Oral History Project in the School of Journalism. Brigit is passionate about mental health care reform, environmental protection, and voting rights. In her free time, she likes to cook, write, and watch dog videos. She hopes to pursue a career in law, public policy, and communication.
Kaitlyn Block | UT Dallas
The White House, Office of National Drug Control Policy
Kaitlyn is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas, pursuing her bachelor's degree in healthcare studies. Kaitlyn previously interned with Jiv Daya Foundation and Care Alliance Ireland in Dublin where she worked on the India Maternal Health Initiative and assisted in advancing the interests of family caregivers nationwide, respectively. On campus, Kaitlyn founded the Public Health Initiative, served as an officer for the Terry Scholars Program, and served her community as a peer advisor with Residential Life. Upon graduation in May, she plans to begin graduate education in public health policy.
Caleb Cade | UT Austin
Office of U.S. Congressman Marc Veasey
Caleb is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin and a student in the Liberal Arts Honors Program, pursuing a double major in government and Middle Eastern studies. He is interested in the intersection between legislation and foreign policy, U.S. foreign aid policy, and political communication strategies. Caleb hopes to pursue a career in public service.
Ruben Cardenas | UT Austin
U.S. Supreme Court, Office of the Counselor to the Chief Justice
Ruben is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin. He is double majoring in government and communication studies with a focus in political communication. Ruben has served as an elected representative in UT Austin Student Government, as a member of Communication Council and was recently inducted into Phi Beta Kappa. He has interned for Texas State Senator Sylvia Garcia, U.S. Congressman Lloyd Doggett, and District Judge Robert Cadena. Upon graduation, Ruben plans to attend law school with the hope of later returning to his hometown of Del Rio, Texas, to serve the community that has given so much to him.
Cyrus Daruwalla | UT Austin
Center for Disease and Control/Pellegrino Center for Clinical Ethics
Cyrus is a junior at The University of Texas at Austin pursuing a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry with a minor in philosophy. He is a council member for the Health Science Scholars Honors Program, has interned at a nonprofit organizations, and volunteers for informal classes for adults with disabilities. His academic interests include public health and bioethics. Cyrus plans to further his education through pursuing a joint MD/MPH degree in medical school.
Diana Laura Elizondo |
UT San Antonio
Drug Policy Alliance
Diana is a senior at The University of Texas at San Antonio, majoring in political science and minoring in women's studies. In San Antonio, she completed internships with U.S. Congressman Lloyd Doggett and the Bexar County Democratic Party. At UTSA, she served as the president of the Undergraduate Political Science Association. Diana is passionate about gender equality, civic engagement, and issues concerning the Latino community. She hopes to pursue a career in public policy and advocacy.
Danielle Edmonds | UT Dallas
Danielle is pursuing a double major in international political economy and public affairs at The University of Texas at Dallas. As President of her collegiate League of United Latin American Citizens chapter, Danielle is a passionate advocate for Latin Americans living in the United States. Danielle has represented UT Dallas as a member of the university’s Debate Team and Model United Nations Team. Danielle is currently working as an undergraduate researcher on a National Science Foundation grant to develop software to aggregate data from Spanish language news publications.
Michelle Findeisen | UT Austin
Middle East Institute
Michelle is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in international relations with concentrations in Middle Eastern studies and Arabic. On-campus, she is involved with the Arabic Flagship Program and Liberal Arts Refugee Alliance. She has previously interned with Austin Independent School District and Interfaith Action of Central Texas. Her interests lie in Middle Eastern politics, Arabic language, and refugee issues. After her semester in Washington, D.C., Michelle plans to spend the following year in Meknes, Morocco with the UT Arabic Flagship Program, and eventually go to graduate school for Middle Eastern studies or political science.
Maya Fitzpatrick | UT Austin
National Public Radio, DC Politics Desk
Maya is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in government with minors in anthropology and communication studies. She is interested in policy, and hopes to work in national political research or become active in state and local politics. After she receives her degree, Maya will attend law school.
Thomas Flanagan | UT Dallas
American Enterprise Institute
Thomas is a third year student at The University of Texas at Dallas majoring in economics and minoring in mathematics. Thomas has worked as a research assistant for Dr. Christian von Drathen, analyzing topics such as patents, peer effects, and stock indices. He plans on writing his senior thesis on how mergers affect an industry’s innovative output. In addition to research, Thomas participated in two years of collegiate policy debate and finished as quarterfinalist at the cross-examination national debate tournament. After completing his undergraduate studies, Thomas plans on pursuing a doctoral degree in economics and a career in academic research.
Abraham Flores-Arguelles | UT Austin
Office of U.S. Congressman Luis Gutiérrez
Abraham is majoring in political communication at The University of Texas at Austin. With a driven passion to change the way his generation has discourse surrounding politics, he hopes to make a lasting impact in the realm of political broadcasting.
Ayah Housini | UT Dallas
Office of U.S. Senator Al Franken
Ayah is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas pursuing a degree in international political economy. Since her freshmen year, Ayah has been heavily involved with on-campus organizations, serving as vice president of the John Marshall Pre-Law Society and captain of UT Dallas’s Mock Trial team. She has also competed at the national level on UT Dallas’ Mediation team. Upon graduation, Ayah plans to attend law school and pursue her career as a litigator.
Molly Howlett | UT Tyler
U.S. Department of Education, Office of Communication and Outreach
Molly is a junior at The University of Texas at Tyler. An honors student, she is majoring in English with a double minor in marketing and political science. As an undergraduate, she has served in leadership roles within the Honors student group, worked for UT Tyler’s Alumni Association, and as a tutor in the Writing Center on campus. Upon graduation, Molly plans to pursue her MBA in hopes of becoming a financial advisor.
Hannah Hubbard | UT Dallas
U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs
Hannah is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas, pursuing degrees in international political economy and sociology in conjunction with a Masters in Public Affairs. She is a Terry Scholar, and has been involved on campus as a senator for Student Government and as an Orientation Leader. Just recently, she served as the Chief Executive Officer of her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta. Hannah has interned with The Borgen Project, advocating for poverty-reduction legislation such as the Electrify Africa Act that was signed into law in 2015 by President Obama. She also interned with IGNITE Texas and worked with the Innocence Project of Texas. She plans to attend law school and to pursue a career in advocacy, public policy, and governmental consulting.
Peter Hunt| UT Dallas
The Wilson Quarterly
Peter is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas, majoring in literature and history with a minor in political science. He is interested in the relationship between politics and the humanities, and intends to pursue a career in arts and arts administration.
Anusha Hussain | UT San Antonio
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Secretary's Operations Center
Anusha is a senior biology major at The University of Texas at San Antonio. During her time at UTSA, Anusha was involved with the UTSA Ambassadors; Active Minds, a national non-profit organization devoted to mental health awareness; and the Paisano, the independent student newspaper. She also founded the UTSA chapter of Love Your Melon, an organization that provides hats for children battling cancer. Anusha is passionate about public health and global medicine and hopes to learn more about these interests during her time in Washington, D.C. Upon graduation, she plans to attend medical school to specialize in pediatric oncology.
Anishka Kappalayil | UT Dallas
Pan American Health Organization/ World Health Organization
Anishka is a junior McDermott Scholar at The University of Texas at Dallas pursuing a degree in biology with a minor in public health. She is interested in global health as well as international health economics and policy, particularly in the area of non-communicable diseases. On campus, she is involved in a global health organization called END7 and has also conducted research on Gulf War disease. Anishka believes that her experience in the Archer Fellowship Program will allow her to better understand the relationship between government and healthcare. After graduation, she hopes to attend medical school and continue working in global non-communicable diseases.
Travis Larson | UT Arlington
U.S. Supreme Court, Office of the Curator
Travis is a senior at The University of Texas at Arlington majoring in political science with minors in communication and disability studies. He received an associate’s degree from Tarrant County College, where he served as vice president of the Student Government Association. He has worked on gubernatorial and congressional campaigns, and has spent a semester abroad in Leicester, England, to study political communication and international relations. He is a strong advocate for disability rights and is passionate about education policy. Travis hopes to one day be a political speechwriter, and he is most passionate about ensuring effective government through better communication. In his free time, Travis enjoys debating politics, spending time with friends and family, and aimless drives through old country roads in his hometown of Burleson.
Jared Looper | UT Dallas
Jared is a junior at The University of Texas at Dallas pursuing a major in political science and a minor in computer science. On campus, he has worked with the Innocence Project of Texas to help exonerate low-income Texans convicted of crimes they did not commit. He hopes to use his Archer Fellowship to explore the public policy components of civil rights. After graduation, Jared plans to pursue a law degree to work at the intersection of civil rights, constitutional law, and public policy.
Vy Nguyen | UT Austin
Asia Society Policy Institute
Vy is a junior at The University of Texas at Austin, triple majoring in international relations, government, and Asian studies with a certificate in public policy through the Bridging Disciplines Program. Her previous experiences in politics include interning at the Houston City Council, Texas State Capitol, and Project Vote Smart. She recently spent her summer and fall semester studying abroad in London and Singapore. After graduation, Vy hopes to join the U.S. Foreign Service.
Lauren O'Neal | UT Dallas
Lauren is a fourth year Eugene McDermott Scholar at The University of Texas at Dallas pursuing a bachelor's degree in biology with minors in both public health and political science. Lauren is interested in global health, ecology, and their intersections in policy. She studied abroad in India, where she studied health care practices; as well as Peru and Malawi, where she learned about biology field research. After graduation, she plans to pursue a master’s degree in public health.
Ailey Ore | UT Arlington
Office of U.S. Congressman Steve Chabot
Ailey is pursuing a bachelor's degree in political science with minors in criminology and criminal justice and Spanish at The University of Texas at Arlington. In the spring of 2016, she was appointed as a College of Liberal Arts (COLA) scholar. She is passionate about human rights, public policy, and anti-human trafficking policy reform. Ailey is interested in the development of programs that provide relief to groups of people in disaster regions and underdeveloped countries. After spending her final semester as an undergraduate student in D.C. as an Archer Fellowship this semester, she will pursue her masters in international affairs.
Zoraima Pelaez | UT Austin
American Civil Liberties Union/She Should Run
Zoraima is a first generation American and college student studying humanities with a concentration in public policy, communication advocacy, and women’s rights at The University of Texas at Austin. Zoraima has worked on statewide electoral campaigns with Battleground Texas and is currently the UT Austin student chapter president of the Texas Freedom Network, where she is also an outreach intern and activist focusing on issues of LGBTQ equality, reproductive justice, and voting rights. Zoraima is also an undergraduate research assistant at the Texas Policy Evaluation Project where she provides research and administrative assistance on the Texas Postpartum Contraception Study and other studies. Her passions include dancing, community organizing and volunteering, as well as spending time with her Chihuahua named Mami. Recently awarded a Truman Scholarship, Zoraima plans to pursue a J.D. as well as a master's in public policy with a women's studies concentration to continue her work as an advocate for reproductive justice.
Dayal Rajagopalan | UT Austin
Dayal is a senior studying chemistry and government at The University of Texas at Austin. Dayal has worked as a research intern at the Greehey Children's Cancer Research Institute both studying lung cancer and developing a potential lung cancer screening tool. He has served as the recruitment chairman for UTransitions, where he led a campus-wide promotion campaign. Dayal is also a public health activist, and has spoken to elementary and middle schools about healthy living and fitness. His interests include healthcare policy, congress, genetics, and medicine. Upon graduation, Dayal plans to attend medical school.
Rajadhar Reddy | UT Dallas
National Academy of Medicine
Rajadhar is a junior at The University of Texas at Dallas, majoring in neuroscience and minoring in public health. A Eugene McDermott Scholar, Raj is a premedical student with an interest in interdisciplinary research at the cross-section of medicine, sociology, anthropology, and philosophy. He has interned with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Dallas and assisted with neuropsychology at UT Southwestern Medical Center. At UT Dallas, he has also been involved in CometTHON, Model United Nations, and the TaRaas Indian Dance Team. Raj hopes to pursue a career in medicine and public health in the future.
Sanjana Reddy | UT Austin
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Global Affairs
Sanjana attends The University of Texas at Austin and is majoring in biology with a certificate in social inequality, health, and policy. As a student leader, she has been involved with Natural Sciences Council and Student Government. She has served on Dell Medical School’s Student Advisory Committee and the Model Healthy Campus Initiative. As a member of UT Austin’s International Genetically Engineered Machine competition team, Sanjana became interested in science and technology policy. Upon graduation in May 2017, she plans to attend medical school. She hopes to build a career in global health policy and innovating health care delivery systems.
Ana Reyes | UT Rio Grande Valley
D.C. Public Schools, Urban Education Leaders Internship Program
Ana is a senior at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley pursuing a degrees in psychology and English with minors in Spanish and history. She is also a scholar of the UTRGV Honors College. As a first generation college student, Ana has fostered a passion for education reform, social justice, and educational equity through internships with Breakthrough New York, Uncommon Schools, and IDEA Public Schools. She is also a mentor through Big Brothers Big Sisters of South Texas and a member of UTRGV’s Alpha Lambda Delta Chapter, an honor society focusing on achievement and retention of first year college students. Upon graduation, Ana plans to join the Uncommon Schools team as a middle school teacher in Brooklyn, New York.
Erica Rodarte | UT El Paso
Office of U.S. Congressman Beto O'Rourke
Erica is a senior at The University of Texas at El Paso, double majoring in philosophy and political science. Born and raised in the El Paso-Ciudad Juárez border region, Erica cherishes her city’s rich and diverse culture. Through UTEP’s Law School Preparation Institute, she has worked at a law office and interned for a federal district court judge. Upon graduation, she will attend law school and hopes to one day use her legal career to ensure individuals’ housing rights in her hometown.
Carlos Rodriguez-Cruz y Celis | UT Dallas
United Nations Information Center
Carlos is a junior studying honors global business and marketing at The University of Texas at Dallas. He spent a semester at the Vienna University of Economics and is interested in pursuing a career in diplomacy. He has participated in international conferences with the United Nations related to non-proliferation affairs, and has led university courses ranging from nuclear weapons testing to classical music marketing. Carlos is a captain of the UTD Mock Trial team, and he has also worked for the Boy Scouts of America. Originally from Puerto Rico, he spends his free time going to the symphony and participating in cultural events.
Gregory Ross | UT Austin
Center for Strategic and International Studies, Energy & National Security Program
Gregory is pursuing a bachelor of science in chemical engineering and a bachelor of arts in Plan II, a liberal arts honors degree, at The University of Texas at Austin. Gregory is a current researcher at the Energy Institute at UT Austin, where he has developed a model to spatially and temporally display electricity prices across Texas. He is interested in studying domestic power generation and transportation technology and policy.
James Ruedlinger, Jr. | UT Arlington
Center for Strategic and International Studies, Defense Industrial Initiatives Group
James is a senior The University of Texas at Arlington, majoring in communication. For the past three years, James has had the opportunity to serve as Vice President of Student Governance at UT Arlington. Previously, James worked on Capitol Hill within the U.S. House of Representatives and for Meyers & Associates LLC, a Texas-based lobbying firm. Along with serving as the Chair of The University of Texas System Student Advisory Council, he recently completed an internship at Lone Star Analysis, a predictive analytics firm in Addison, Texas.
Jeffrey Saeling | UT Austin
The White House, Office of National Drug Control Policy
Jeffery is a philosophy and humanities major at The University of Texas at Austin. During his academic career, he has published with Baylor College of Medicine, traveled in Japan through UT Austin’s Liberal Arts Honors Program, and is currently finishing his thesis on healthcare policy. He hopes to one day be fluent in Spanish and return to Santander, having studied abroad in the quiet maritime city this past year. Most recently, Jeffery biked from Austin, Texas, to Alaska with Texas 4000 for Cancer, which benefits cancer research. Upon graduation, Jeffery will work full-time with Booz Allen Hamilton.
Matthew Salm | UT Dallas
National Center for Education and the Economy
Matthew is a junior McDermott Scholar at The University of Texas at Dallas, studying mathematics with minors in economics and political science. He is active in environmental organizations on campus and is a member of UTD's Men's Club Soccer team. Matt plans to earn a Ph.D. in economics and work with the United Nations on issues related to sustainable development. He loves hiking, playing sports, traveling, and anything that entails being outside (which is why it is so unfortunate that he spends most of his time in the library doing math problems).
Matthew Schneider | UT Austin
Federal Communications Commission, Office of Legislative Affairs
Matthew is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in computer science and government. He interned in the Texas legislature, and worked to develop software for UT Austin's Applied Research Laboratories. His coursework focuses on cybersecurity and the intersection of law and policy affecting information technology and privacy. Last summer, he rode his bicycle to Alaska with the non-profit student organization Texas 4000 for Cancer.
Kristen Shepard | UT Austin
Office of U.S. Congressman Kevin Brady
Kristen is a junior at The University of Texas at Austin in the Business Honors Program, majoring in finance and minoring in government. Additionally, Kristen is pursuing a certificate in the Leadership & Ethics in Law, Politics, and Government through the Bridging Disciplines Program. This past summer, Kristen studied supply chain management at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. Previously, she worked in the technology industry at Austin-based WP Engine as a Finance Intern. She is a member of Kappa Delta Sorority where she served as the Academic Excellence Chairman. Kristen is passionate about global business and corporate social responsibility.
Hannah Shipley | UT Tyler
U.S. Department of State
Hannah attends The University of Texas at Tyler, majoring in political science with an international relations minor. She plans to remain in Washington, D.C., upon the completion of her internship and hopes to gain work experience in her field before applying to competitive graduate degree programs. She will be pursuing a career in either law, government, or international organizations.
Monica Smith | UT Austin
Office of U.S. Senator John Cornyn
Monica is a junior at The University of Texas at Austin pursuing a degree in political communication studies. Monica previously worked at the Texas Capitol in the Office of Speaker Joe Straus, where she conducted policy research and aided the Chief of Staff. Additionally, she is involved in the Alpha Phi sorority on campus. After graduating, Monica plans to attend law school and pursue a career in international law to continue her interest in international relations.
Christian Sweeney | UT Dallas
The Heritage Foundation
Christian is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas, double majoring in political science and international political economy. He has served as an AES mentor and as a peer advisor on-campus, and he is the Founder and Executive Chair of the UT Dallas chapter of College Republicans. Previously, he interned at the office of Texas state Senator Van Taylor as well as with the City of Carrollton. Christian plans to attend law school in the fall of 2017 where he intends to focus on constitutional law. In his free time, he enjoys watching sports or reading Tolkien.
Sanaa Tejani | UT Dallas
United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, U.S. Protection Unit
Sanaa is a junior at The University of Texas at Dallas. She is a Eugene McDermott Scholar and a member of the Collegium V Honors Program, majoring in biology with minors in art history and public health. On campus, Sanaa works as a Student Ambassador in the Office of the University President and currently serves as President of Rotaract at UT Dallas. Previously, she interned with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and conducted research on refugee access to healthcare. Upon graduation, Sanaa plans to pursue a career in medicine and public health.
William Tresch | UT Dallas
The Heritage Foundation
William is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas studying political science. He in an Eagle Scout and a National Merit Scholar. On campus, he is a mentor for freshmen academic excellence scholars, a member of Phi Kappa Phi, and founded and served as treasurer for the College Republicans. William is interested in law and politics. Last year, he was ranked as one of the top 20 moot court orators in Texas. Next year, he plans to attend law school so he may pursue a career as an attorney.
Poonam Vaidya | UT Austin
U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pension
Poonam is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, majoring in neuroscience. On campus, Poonam works with students through Women in Natural Science, fostering a strong community among young women pursuing science degrees. She is also involved in Texas Nach Baliye, Central Texas Model United Nation, and Gamma Beta Phi. This past semester, she interned with the League of Women Voters of Texas where she developed a program to increase political participation among college students. She is interested in mental health care reform and working to reduce the stigma towards mental illness.
Tonia Wu | UT Austin
Alliance for Health Reform
Tonia is a junior at The University of Texas at Austin majoring in public health with a certificate in healthcare ethics. She is interested in pursuing health care advocacy and reform, with particular focus on pediatric care. She interned with the clinical ethics department at The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center and served as a research assistant for the Institute for Urban Policy Research and Analysis. On campus, she has been involved as the vice president for Texas Public Health. During her Archer Fellowship, she wants to try every single restaurant in Washington, D.C., if humanly possible.
Alice Zhu | UT Dallas
Alice is a senior at The University of Texas at Dallas majoring in marketing with a minor in international political economy. At UT Dallas, she is an active participant in Model United Nations and Student Ambassadors and is a founding member of the UT Dallas United Nations Association chapter. Throughout her college career, Alice has broadened her professional experience through nonprofit branding, healthcare marketing, and event management roles with a particular focus on digital and social media marketing. After graduation, she plans to pursue opportunities in global branding for NGOs and other international entities.