Heritage’s Groundbreaking Internship Program Turns 35

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Heritage Founder Ed Feulner

Heritage Founder Ed Feulner started the internship program to help advance the conservative cause.

“One of the early concerns we had when we started Heritage was how to convey the conservative message to the next generation,” says Heritage Founder Ed Feulner. “We started the intern program to bring in dedicated young conservatives and show them the underlying principles behind conservative ideas.”

The program was launched in 1979 and quickly developed into an oasis young people across the nation seeking an alternative to the liberal indoctrination imposed by colleges and universities.

Feulner envisioned the Heritage internship program as a true learning experience. “An intern program should develop students’ skills and increase their knowledge of conservative principles that undergird a free society and make America a special place,” he explains. Continue Reading »

This Senator-Elect Got His Start at Heritage 17 Years Ago

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Photo: Wikipedia Commons

As the election results came in last night, it became clear that conservative policy solutions resonated with Americans. Most winning campaigns ran against Obamacare, against the President’s proposed executive amnesty, and in favor of lower taxes, less spending, and limited, constitutional government.

One newly elected Senator who ran on a conservative platform began his career at The Heritage Foundation. Senator-elect Tom Cotton (R-AR) interned at Townhall.com, which was then a Heritage project, in 1997 while an undergraduate at Harvard. Inspired by Heritage, he spent a year at the Claremont Graduate School before going to law school and joining the military after 9/11. He was elected to Congress in November 2012.

Heritage’s internship program, part of our Young Leaders Program, is just one part of what Heritage does to educate the next generation of policymakers. All newly-elected members of Congress are invited to Heritage next week so they can get acquainted with Heritage and learn about the resources we offer. After the new Congress swears in, they’ll be invited to participate in the Conservative Members Retreat, which includes in-depth briefings on conservative solutions and the principles we stand for.

That Senator-elect Cotton got his start at Heritage is just another example of the importance of our long-term work to win conservative victories.

Do you think educating interns and members of Congress alike about conservative principles is the best way to ensure the future of the conservative movement?

What I Learned as an Intern with the Heritage Legacy Society

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Annuities, bequests, charitable trusts. When I started my internship at the Heritage Legacy Society office a few short months ago, these terms were somewhat confusing. Now, they have become inspiring.

At our nation’s core rests the belief that every individual has a right to liberty, a right for which we all must fight. Nowhere have I seen this better understood and demonstrated than through the efforts of our Heritage Legacy Society members. Just as the Constitution seeks to ensure the “blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity,” our members have sacrificed not only throughout their lifetimes, but have committed their time and resources to my generation.

Their giving has enabled my fellow interns and me to join the conservative movement that aims to return America to its founding principles. We have gained a better understanding of today’s most pressing issues through innovative briefings from policy experts and through leading Conservative conferences featuring today’s leaders. We have also looked at the past, appreciating the vision of our Founders through visits to the Capitol and Mount Vernon.

Most importantly, our members have also given us the opportunity to learn from them.

Whether conversing on the phone, assisting with gift annuities, or giving Heritage Foundation tours that take us to the very Wall of Freedom commemorating our Heritage Legacy Society members, our supporters have demonstrated their understanding that the size and form of the gift doesn’t matter, rather, it is the willingness to commit to our principles that gives this country hope.

We have inherited a legacy of liberty thanks to the dedication of American citizens such as our members. By their generosity, we have also gained the practical knowledge and equipping to continue spreading those values.

I will take my experiences back to Pennsylvania, and my friends will return to their campuses and home towns, equipped to hold our government and society accountable to the American Constitution. We have seen that it’s not only possible, but necessary to care for my generation to ensure that we preserve and increase freedom for generations to come.

How My Heritage Internship Convinced Me Conservatives Are Fighting the Good Fight

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Photo: Megan Walden

Serving as an intern at The Heritage Foundation this summer has been an unforgettable experience.

I had the pleasure of working in the Development Office. It allowed me to talk to hundreds of people around the country and learn about national and local issues concerning them. I got to hear what mattered to them and realized that the conservative movement is stronger than ever.

As a student at a relatively conservative university, I had a firm understanding of our nation’s founding principles — and I was eager to spend time in Washington D.C. so that I could learn how to apply these principles to public policy.

While I expected to be informed, what I didn’t expect was to be inspired.

Heritage’s Young Leaders Program, which implements the internship program, invests in every intern. From one-on-one help preparing my resume, to policy discussions with leading experts, the program has gone above and beyond all of my expectations. No wonder it’s known as THE internship in Washington D.C.!

I truly believe we are fighting the good fight and I know that I want to work to further the conservative movement. The Heritage Foundation has given me the opportunity to challenge myself and refine my skills to be a stronger conservative and a better American.

Learn more about the Young Leaders’ Program here.

This Statement Helped Heritage Interns Win Their Debate With Cato

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Every summer, Heritage Foundation interns debate political philosophy with interns from the libertarian Cato Institute.

This debate is an opportunity for Heritage interns to refine their understanding of America’s first principles and how they apply to today’s most important issues.

Heritage interns were judged the winner of this year’s debate, in part because of the opening statement by intern Louis Cola.

Read his full remarks, below, and tell us what you think in the comments. Continue Reading »

Heritage Book Fair Raises $4,000 for Wounded Warrior Project

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Heritage Foundation interns pose with Angelise Schrader of Heritage’s Young Leaders Program, fourth from left, and a veteran representing the Wounded Warrior Project

Heritage Foundation staff and interns raised more than $4,000 this month for the Wounded Warriors Project through our fifth annual book fair.

Heritage staff and friends donated books, including books on history and conservative policy, which were then sold by members of Heritage’s Young Leaders Program. Proceeds were donated to Wounded Warriors, which works to aid injured veterans as they adjust to life after service.

The Wounded Warriors Project is of special significance to Heritage, since many Heritage staff members are veterans, and several currently serve in the National Guard or reserve units. Heritage believes strongly in both a strong national defense and in taking care of those who have sacrificed for our country.

Three With Heritage Ties Earn Spots on Red Alert Politics’ ’30 Under 30′ List

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Clockwise from top right: Alexandra Smith, Caitlin Poling, and Heather Pfitzenmaier. Photos: RedAlertPolitics

The Heritage Foundation’s Heather Pfitzenmaier and two former Heritage interns, Alexandra Smith and Caitlin Poling, have been selected for the annual Red Alert Politics “30 under 30” list, which recognizes rising young conservative stars.

“Heather’s understanding and commitment to conservative principles plus her enthusiasm and dedication to advancing great ideas to young leaders are attributes that make her shine as a leader,” said Heritage vice president Becky Norton Dunlop. “She is a consummate professional and is noticeably very personal and genuinely invested in each person she meets, making her an obvious role model for principled young people.”

Pfitzenmaier, an alumnus of Heritage’s intern program who directs Heritage’s Young Leaders Program, also received an honor from Forbes for being one of the young Americans making an impact on law and policy. She also received the 2012 Buckley Award from the Young Conservatives Coalition.

In an interview with Red Alert Politics, Pfitzenmaier explained why it’s  important for young conservatives to become involved in the movement: Continue Reading »

Five Former Heritage Interns Selected for Prestigious Publius Fellowship

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The Claremont Institute announced its 2014 Publius Fellows this week. Of the 14 rising conservative leaders selected, five are former Heritage Foundation interns: Gregory Collins, Travis LaCouter, Emil Maine, Avi Snyder, and Edward Walton.

The Publius Fellows, all young conservatives “pursuing careers in politics, scholarship, journalism, and related fields,” will gather in July to study the “moral and political principles of the American constitutional order.”

Through 40 seminars and discussions with distinguished scholars, the fellows will discuss a variety of topics including the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the the Federalist Papers. Publius is the pen name used by John Jay, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton to promote and defend the Constitution during the ratification debates.

Having participated in Heritage’s internship program, Collins, LaCouter, Maine, Snyder, and Walton are no strangers to conservative ideas. Heritage’s Young Leaders Program educates interns on American government and our founding principles through policy briefings and First Principles lectures. These will provide a solid foundation for these new fellows as they enter what has been called “boot camp for the political brain.”

Visit the Young Leaders Program page for more information about Heritage’s internship program.

Heritage’s Pfitzenmaier Crosses the Atlantic to Help Bridge the Generations

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Heather Pfitzenmaier

The Heritage Foundation’s Heather Pfitzenmaier recently represented the conservative movement at an international convention  of world leaders in Switzerland.

Pfitzenmaier, who directs Heritage’s Young Leaders Program, attended the St. Gallen Symposium, which features debates among world leaders about economic, political, and social issues.

This year’s conference focused on “the clash of generations,” especially how the views of the Millennial generation (those born roughly between 1980 and 2000) relate to those of older generations.

As the Director of the Young Leaders Program, Pfitzenmaier understands the importance of the conservative vision and the role young minds play in protecting America’s founding principles. The future of liberty depends on equipping the next generation with a strong foundation in these core ideas.

For example, Pfitzenmaier leads Heritage’s internship program to prepare young leaders to take on new responsibilities in the conservative movement.

Visit the Young Leaders Program page for more information about Heritage’s internship program and other opportunities for the next generation.

Heritage Interns Win Prestigious Debate

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Heritage interns Aaron Trujillo and Michael Koziarski won the Center for Strategic and International Studies Speed Debate Tournament.

Heritage Foundation interns Aaron Trujillo and Michael Koziarski won the Center for Strategic and International Studies Speed Debate Tournament earlier this month.

Competing against eighteen other interns representing organizations like the Cato Institute, the Wilson Center, and the Foundation for the Defense of Democracy, Trujillo and Koziarski were assigned to debate several policy resolutions.

For example, the duo argued against government subsidies for renewable energy, arguing that this policy allows the government to pick winners and losers, propping up inefficient businesses like Solyndra. Continue Reading »

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