Home office visit/ current happenings

So it has been a looooong time since I’ve updated you on anything, so sorry about that. The good news here, I suppose, is that I’m enjoying everything as much as ever. I got back to DC from Alaska last Wednesday around 11:00. Sadly, while I was gone I missed our intern service challenge benefitting JDRF. Michael and I had scheduled the whole event in advance, so I did get to run the project more or less I suppose, but it was a bummer that I didn’t get to see it in action. We had to have the event while I was gone because my manager wanted the event to take place during a whole team staff meeting so the folks coming in from out of town could participate. In case I haven’t told you about the project in an earlier post- we were assembling t-shirts, thank you notes, and ribbons from JDRF for their walk. As the world leader in T1D research funding, sending over 80% of their proceeds towards these efforts, it is crucial that JDRF gets help with projects such as the one we did, so that their relatively limited personnel can devote time to more important matters. But anyway, because I was in Alaska and unable to actually package t-shirts, I did my best to stay engaged by sending numerous encouraging emails in the days leading up to the competition and in the beginning of the competition. I also had Astro Donut deliver donuts for my team the second morning of the competition, which I think was a nice treat.

More currently in the office we’ve been working to schedule meetings with house staffers to discuss the Treat and Prevent Obesity Act. To do this, a lobbyist has given me a list of people to contact and their email addresses, and I have written them all emails asking to meet. I have around 15 scheduled currently, and I suspect more will roll in. It’s been interesting for me to learn more about obesity at a biological level, and the many struggles and prejudices that obese individuals must face, since that was something that I honestly knew very little about. As someone with T1D who often has to deal with others’ incorrect assumptions about my condition, I’m certainly sympathetic to obese individuals’ struggle with that.

On Friday, because Michael and I have been for the most part unable to participate fully in the intern series programs, Jill had arranged for us to head up to the corporate office for the day. In the morning, we got to meet with a corporate counsel who specializes in the hemophilia side of the business, as well as GA, so that was particularly neat for me as a T1D considering a legal career. This guy was for years a research scientist, and later in his career decided to attend law school and began down his current path. Since I understand and enjoy the scientific side of the disease, and since I’m passionate about the issues, it seems like a great fit for me.

Our next meeting was with a woman who manages the company’s corporate giving and social impact. In corporate giving, her big challenge seems to be to execute cost-effective programs that promote giving from employees in the company, and yet also seem to be aligned with corporate needs/ interests. It was also interesting hearing how she ended up in this position from an extremely diverse professional background that included mutual fund accounting, human rights organizations, and an MBA.

Michael and I got to have lunch with all of our fellow undergrad interns, which was a real treat considering we’ve (done our best) interacting with them so much over the phone, but have never actually been able to talk in a less formal setting. Obviously they are all an interesting, motivated bunch.

After meeting with Jill, our primary intern coordinator, our last event of the day was our social media seminar with the whole intern group. The focus of the session was linkedin, but a broader takeaway is that in general there are really a lot of things we can all be doing as 21st century individuals to demonstrate our professional skills and to grow our networks.


Oops- I’m back

Hi guys. Once again apologies for being away so long.  I was out of town visiting friends up at school for the 4th from Wednesday night to Sunday night- a truly special time for all of you out there wondering how that went.  There really just aren’t too many times in our lives where we can be so close to so many of our friends who we love and enjoy being with so much when we don’t have papers, exams, or literally any other bit of work looming over our heads.  Add the fact that it was 75 and sunny and that we got to experience the most quintessentially American small town 4th of July celebration and I can honestly say that’s honestly the happiest weekend I’ve had in a while.


Anyway, back to my job.  I believe that the last time I updated you all of my activities I was assembling the database of all NDPP sites.  I finished this task don’t worry.   While I’ve done various other activities since then, the last thing I did today was draft a letter that a Senior VP of the company will be sending to every single employee in the US about grassroots initiatives and voting in the upcoming election, so that’s neat.  Fellow intern Michael and I have continued to iron out final details of our intern service project with JDRF in which we’ll have all GA and Public Policy Team members folding teachings, tying ribbons around them, and attaching thank you notes for the JDRF walk participants.  This all seems to be going well.

Don’t have much other news for now.  I’ll try to follow this up with something Thursday or so.


Checking in

Considering what a late start I had in the blogging game, I figured I should probably start posting more.  Not a ton to report, but here I go nonetheless:

Thursday was pretty cool.  It was different hearing Biden tell one story after the next about personal experiences with Tom Lantos and Shimon Peres rather than reading some canned political speech.  One of the more memorable moments of the afternoon came when the vice president cited the old Satchel Paige quote, “How old would you be if you didn’t know how old you are?” After which saying, “I’d be about 42, but you Mr. President(Peres) would be 25!” Indeed, as one of Israel’s founders alongside David Ben-Gurion, Peres’ eternal youth and abundant energy even today at age 90 was a major talking point and a takeaway.  

Over the weekend I went on a 45 mile bike ride to Mt Vernon and back on Saturday with an old track/soccer coach which was nice.  Sunday I ran 8.5 miles in the morning, went to brunch with some friends, then we all went to the Smithsonian National Museum of American History, which is always great.  After that we bummed around the Smithsonian Folk Life Festival with a high school friend of mine, rounding out a lovely weekend.

Currently working on a project where I’m making a spreadsheet of every single National Diabetes Prevention Program Site in the County with its corresponding congressional district, city, and congressman.  I’m currently about 500 people, it’s tedious, but I’ll be done in not too long.  Tomorrow I’ll be reading some new CDC information on diabetes and starting a project with that as soon as I finish up my current activity.  

We made it!

After receiving a friendly reminder from Nicole today, figured it was probably time to get going with this, as we are now in the middle of week 3.

A quick synopsis of the first 2.5 weeks so where I go after this doesn’t seem too egregiously out of the blue for you all:


Day 1: Having only actually arrived in DC about 12 hours earlier from the SWD conference, having never before in my life dealt with public transportation, and having similarly little idea of where I was actually going, I left my apartment at 7:30.  I wasn’t asked to arrive until 8:30, but I figured I’d need every minute.  Turns enough I was close enough to correct, arriving at 8:10, making a 10 minute commute 40 minutes with my blundering around.  Oops.

Day 4: Had a cool meeting. Would like to elaborate but because of non disclosure stuff I’ll refrain from that now and likely many times in the future.

I could tell you more about week 1, but with most people out of the office for an event in AZ, really it was a lot of getting oriented and working on little projects to familiarize myself with the various aspects of the GA office, and surely that’s not interesting enough to share with you all.


Week 2: More projects.  Settling in though.  Remember to write thank you notes to some folks at SWD, obviously the highlight of my week.  Attend Washington Nationals game Tuesday on friend’s company tickets.  Realize that I’m vastly underprepared in terms of cooking supplies and professional attire, spend every day after work hustling around DC trying to remedy these issues.  Manage to scrounge up the tools to scramble first egg Thursday night, the 19th.  Huge thrill. Thus far into week 3, efforts continue to appear relatively fruitful.


Week 3, to date: Because I’m getting tired and more importantly I need to call my grandparents, I’ll keep this brief: Yesterday my fellow intern, Michael, and I presented our intern service project, benefiting JDRF, in the whole GA team meeting, which was very well received. Aftering hearing our presentation, I was approached by state GA team member from the corporate office asking me if that might work in New Jersey as well.  After I followed up with him via email, wouldn’t be difficult at all to put something together for them benefitting the Central Jersey Chapter, stay tuned. Also attending a meet and great last night where new House Majority Leader McCarthy was present.  Neat. Tomorrow I’m attending a breakfast with two leading pollsters, then attending the Lantos foundation event honoring the Israeli president, Shimon Peres.  Hillary Clinton, who was honored last year, will be in attendance, and Joe Biden will be speaking. Bono is on the board, as is Elie Wiesel, so who knows maybe I’ll get to bump into them as well.  Not a bad lineup.  Looking forward to debuting a rather sharp suit for the affair.


Stay tuned.