You’re Hired! White House Intern

I make a living keeping track of records…other people’s records.  I’m not so good when it comes to my own.  People would be appalled to know that I have boxes full of unorganized papers and photographs.  Thus I’m angry at myself for not keeping a better journal of the time when I served as a White House Intern.  Hopefully, using my blog,  I can resurrect what events occurred and piece together thoughts and feeling from past emails and notes and pictures.  (I have lots of pictures !)

It’s hard to get started when I can’t even recall why it is I was pushed in the direction of our nation’s capital.  At the time, and the time was late spring 2006, I was employed in City Government for a year, so I had a decent primary job and working part time in retail plus taking some extra college courses here and there.  At the beginning of 2006 I started in a new work location for the City, in the Document Services Section which housed the City Records Center, Mail Room and Print Shop.  Prior to this I had taken 2 government classes at Milwaukee Area Technical College with the same instructor.  He was a former City Department Head and State Senator.  In my opinion a very honest politician and somewhat of a hero to me… even if at the time he was a member of the opposing political party.  I looked up to him so much and was grateful that he gave me a superb letter of recommendation for my Intern application.  His classes got me energized to become a more active participant in politics. 

I found the application for a White House Intern when I was on my Congressman’s website and he had a link to studentjobs.gov.  That’s where my memory gets fuzzy because I don’t remember why I was searching for a job. Perhaps I had a bad day at work or something.  I didn’t tell a lot of people what I was doing.  I was actually embarrassed because I felt like they would think I was out of my mind for attempting this.  I only had a week left before the deadline to submit everything I needed to be chosen for the Summer semester.  I was down to the wire and faxed all my materials on the last day.  

 

Rejected.

 

Something pushed me to try one more time. Just one more time, anything more and I’d appear obsessive about getting the job.  I used the summer to tweek my application before trying for the fall semester. Parts of this story still bring tears to my eyes when I think about it.

I remember it was a very hot summer day.  Even working in the basement we had unnecessary lights and equipment shut off to help cool the temps.  I was working on the Xerox Docutech High Speed Copier.  I was alone in the print shop at the time, when the phone ring.  I looked down at the caller I.D. and it read “Call from 202”.  Puzzeled, I looked at it for a few rings.  I couldn’t figure out why the 2nd floor would be calling me.  That would have been the City Clerk and I didn’t have any current business with them.  I picked up the phone to ease my worried mind.

“Print Shop.  This is Maggie,” I greeted.

I was asked my full name and I confirmed.

The woman introduced herself and asked, “Do you know why I’m calling?”

I told her I thought I did.  

It was this phone call that I was offered an internship in the photo office at the White House.  I couldn’t believe I had actually been selected.  She told me if I wanted to put my hand over the receiver and tell my co-workers the good news I could.  I looked around but no one was there.  During the conversation, Marvin had come in and was talking to an employee from another department near the mail room and I tried flagging him down. 

When I fished the phone call I was so excited and couldn’t wait to spread the news.  I ran all the way up to my old department to tell everyone.  Then I went to my 2nd job that night to tell those co-workers.  I was frantically trying to tell everyone.   It reminded me of a silly little clip from The Monkees’ episode called I’ve Got a Little Song Here when Mike sells his song to a Hollywood producer.  Here’s the clip.

My official start date was in September after Labor day.  I had a lot of work ahead of me the next few months putting together a suitable wardrobe, finding housing, getting my college credit squared away and tying up what needed to be done to be temporarily released from my job with the City.  The summer flew by.

 

pogo pic

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