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White House Internship Provides Valuable Experience for Idaho State University Student

August 3, 2022

Eric Morris stands between two flags.

On the Fourth of July, Idaho State University senior Eric Morris had the opportunity of a lifetime— he was volunteering at the White House. 

“That’s one of my peak experiences,” Morris said. 
 
It was just one of the many opportunities Morris received as an intern for the Executive Office of the President this summer.
 
How did someone from small town Arimo, Idaho get to Washington, D.C. working for the President of the United States? 
 
“I think the reason that they hired me was because I was well-rounded from school,” Morris said.  
 
Morris is a global studies major at Idaho State University, minoring in business administration and linguistics. He learned about the internship opportunity from an ISU Global Studies alumnus who sent an email to the department. 
 
Competition to get in was very high. Many of his peer interns are from some of the most prestigious schools in the country. He credits his acceptance into the internship to his well-rounded studies at ISU, his work as a Career Path Intern in the Department of Global Studies, and his volunteer work as president of the International Affairs Council, where he’s had the opportunity to help organize and run the Frank Church Symposium.
 
Morris worked in logistics in the Office of Administration. The Office of Administration provides enterprise wide services to the entire Executive Office of the President. He works on Service-Level Agreements, using technical writing skills he learned in school. “
 
Morris has also been able to use what he’s learned in ISU business classes. 
 
“They’re letting me do some statistical analysis,” he said. “They’re willing to let me do projects when I have ideas.”
 
Morris’s long-term goal is to be a foreign service officer for the Department of State. “
 
This is a great opportunity for me to see what it’s actually like to work in public service,” he said. “Having this on my resume will help get me to where I want to go, and the connections I’m making are a really big part as well.
 
“People are giving me a chance to see how everything works. I'm helping the organization run better and preparing myself to be a better public servant in the future.”
 
Being proactive is one skill Morris is learning. He also says that the internship is helping him build connections with people and build teamwork and communication skills. The internship experience will help him when he applies for competitive master’s programs in international affairs after he graduates with his bachelor's degree in the fall.
 
“It's been a great experience,” he says. “I know people idolize those that are in high positions, but it’s great to see how human people are. Everybody has some sort of self-doubt. It’s made me realize that you can do whatever you want as long as you set your mind to it and work hard. I feel really lucky to have gotten in here.”
 

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