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SPIA Public Policy Internship Program- Summer 2017 Positions and Experiences

In Summer I,  three SPIA graduate students interned at different Fairfax county offices. The internship was eight (8) weeks and required a minimum of 135 hours of work.

1.) In Summer I, Glaucia Ribeiro interned as a Research Assistant with the Office of Public Private Partnerships (OP3). She assisted with a variety of research and partnership development projects and supported OP3  and the Grants Research and Training Center (GRTC). Glaucia's main project involved preparing and analysis of fairfax County Public Schools volunteer data. She was tasked with organizing, analyzing and reporting on data across FCPS elementary, middle and high schools. She produced a final research report that shed light on data inconsistencies and provided a critical review of how multiple agencies in Fairfax work toward community engagement across the county. 

In her evaluation of her internship experience Glaucia states "I learned how the government works, and I made valuable connections. The internship met my expectations. I had the opportunity to learn much more than administrative tasks." 

Glaucia Ribeiro (center) with fellow interns at Fairfax County Government Center, Fairfax, (June 2017)  

2.) Rolake Ojabutu interned under the supervision of Ms. Jessica Werder, Director of Business, HHS, Office of the County Executive. She was assigned research duties for a program run by the office of Health and Human Services, assisted with data transfer for a new project called 'Information System for Effective Performance' and conducted an extensive interview with Ms. Patrician Harrison who is retiring from her position as Deputy County Executive of Health and Human Services of Fairfax county. Rolake's final report focused on the Effects of Health Care Integration in Fairfax County. 

 Rolake Olajubu (right) interviewing Ms. Patrician Harrison, Deputy County Executive, Health and Human Services, Fairfax County (June, 2017)  

3.) Pinar Bahceci interned with the Department of Human Resources at Fairfax County. She served as a Human Resource Specialist and assisted with the day-to-day operations surrounding the country-wide hiring practices. In addition,  she was extensively involved in preparing an extensive  review of the return hire package procedures and documentation requirements and providing recommendations on streamlining and expediting the process.

Pinar writes about he internship "During the internship, I experienced a welcoming and friendly work environment that encouraged me to learn and work more. Fairfax County is one of the largest counties that hires approximately 2700 employee every year. My assignment was to review the hiring procedure. I was able to follow the whole process from the first step -- job posting, to the last one which is -- sending the acceptance letter. I also had a chance to interview six (6) other divisions that work as part of HR Department: Payroll, OD&T, HRIS, ER, Benefits, and Compensation. I gained useful insightful information from each of them. Additionally, making personal connections with county employees was the great outcome of this internship." (July 17, 2017) 

Pinar Bahceci (left) with colleagues at the Department of Human Resources at Fairfax County, (June 2017)