Finding Power in Place

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Editor’s note: During the summer, Colgate students are applying their liberal arts education in a variety of real-world settings, and they are keeping our community posted on their progress. English and political science double major Olivia Wisbey ’22 of Milford, N.H., describes her work with the civic and social organization Power in Place.

This summer, I am working as a collaborator for Power in Place, a women-led organization that creates portraits of women in power to increase political participation by females and other marginalized community members across the United States. As a summer intern, my responsibilities include interviewing female politicians, writing articles, researching grants, and working with the marketing team. 

One of the most rewarding aspects of my summer internship has been my involvement with the Politician Stories series of Power in Place. I’ve had the opportunity to research, organize, and execute my own photo shoots and interviews with politicians, including New Hampshire State Representative Safiya Wazir, an inspiring woman and the first former refugee to hold public office in the state. As we sat together in Concord High School, I was lucky enough to hear her story about becoming a citizen and, later, an elected official. I also had the opportunity to assist in an interview with Mayor Joyce Craig of Manchester, N.H. Talking with these women and having complete responsibility for everything from the logistics of the shoot to the interview questions has been a fulfilling experience for me as a collaborator.

I am also working in a business-centered capacity for Power in Place as a member of both the grant writing and marketing teams. As a grant writer, I am working with other team members to apply for grants for our Time Capsule project, which will be a multimedia exhibit spotlighting the timeline between women of color suffragettes and women of color in politics today. As a member of the marketing team, I am gaining experience in creating advertising campaigns while I help to establish an online marketplace for Power in Place merchandise.

This summer, I have grown as a researcher, interviewer, writer, and team member. It has been amazing to work with other women and learn more about journalism, grant writing, and marketing — confirming my interest in these fields. As important, it feels good to be doing something with a strong sense of purpose, believing that the content I am creating on behalf of this organization could have an impact on those who hear our stories. 

Learn more about summer internship funding opportunities through Career Services at Colgate.