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Class of 2016 Graduate Lands Job on Presidential Campaign Trail

The 2016 presidential election is approaching and presidential hopefuls have launched vigorous campaigns, and a recent Saint Peter’s University graduate is part of the action. For Manuelita Duran ’16, her Saint Peter’s University and political internship experiences have culminated in a job with Hillary for America (HFA). After working as an intern for the campaign, she was promoted to work on Clinton’s research team starting last month at the Brooklyn, New York headquarters.

Duran made the transition to a paid media and research staffer after working as a member of the robust internship program. Duran demonstrated that she was reliable and talented, and built a strong relationship with her supervisor, who recommended her for the position. The HFA internship program is robust with over 50 interns supporting the team. These interns receive real world experience in a fast-paced environment. As an intern, Duran completed tasks such as phone screenings, and writing memos and briefings for elected officials and senior members of the HFA campaign. Prior to her internship with HFA, Duran worked as an intern in Senator Robert Menendez’s ’76 office in Newark. As part of his curriculum, Associate Professor of Political Science Alain Sanders frequently attempts to introduce students to professionals in the field. When a staffer from Senator Robert Menendez’s office spoke to the class on the work of Congress, Duran took the opportunity to network with the speaker and cultivate the relationship into an internship.

“The Department of Political Science regularly seeks to create and facilitate internship opportunities, to support our students in obtaining internships, and to help them network with politically connected professionals,” said Sanders. He said it was no surprise that Duran was able to land a full time job with the Clinton campaign because she is bright and reliable. According to Duran’s internship papers, her internship supervisors recognized her work, and trusted her judgement and capacities.

“Manuelita possesses the intelligence, the analytical skills, the commitment to quality work, and the diplomatic poise that makes for success. The political science department is pleased that we were able to facilitate her entry into the exciting, important, and yes, demanding work of big time politics,” said Sanders.

During her time at Saint Peter’s University, Duran majored in political science and double minored in international business and business law. Duran credits her interest in politics to Sanders, saying that she was undecided when she entered Saint Peter’s, but after a class with him, decided to pursue a degree in political science. Her internships and class experiences led her to a challenging but rewarding job. The pressure is on as November draws closer and Duran is enjoying her time with the HFA campaign.

“It’s a very exciting environment. I am very proud to be a part of history and working to elect the first female president of the United States,” said Duran.

Pictured is the States Team with Clinton. Duran is third from the left.

The States Team with Clinton.