Student interns assist Catt Center with research, programming

Five outstanding undergraduate student interns have joined the staff of the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics for the 2018-2019 academic year.

Undergraduate student interns play an essential role in the Catt Center’s work, including the Archives of Women’s Political Communication, Women in Iowa Politics Database and Gender Balance Project, and public relations and events planning.

"We are thrilled to have an impressive group of students working with us this year," said Kelly Winfrey, interim director and coordinator of research and outreach for the center. “Each year, our student interns provide vital support for the programs and research of the Catt Center."

The student interns are:

Crystal Brandenburgh
Crystal Brandenburgh

Crystal Brandenburgh, a junior in history, is a research intern working on the Archives of Women’s Political Communication with Winfrey and Sue Cloud, communications specialist for the center. Brandenburgh is focusing on expanding the Archives' collection of speeches by Carrie Chapman Catt and other leading suffragists.

Brandenburgh is a member of the Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society and the Catt Hall Study Group, and is a peer mentor for History 195, "Introduction to History." She is from Council Bluffs, Iowa.

"Working at the Catt Center has been one of the most rewarding experiences I've had since coming to college," said Brandenburgh. "It has allowed me to travel, explore my interests and get hands-on experience in historical analysis, and has connected me with so many wonderful people and colleagues."

Jessica Holtkamp
Jessica Holtkamp

Jessica Holtkamp, a senior in political science, is also a research intern working on the Archives of Women’s Political Communication. Holtkamp, who is returning for a second year as an Archives intern, is focusing on collecting political ads and campaign speeches from the 2018 election.

Holtkamp is the 2018-2019 Haselhoff Family Legacy of Heroines scholar, a Campus Election Engagement Project fellow, an undergraduate assistant with ISU’s child welfare project Parenting: It's a Life, and a member of the Cyclone Swing Society. She is from West Point, Iowa.

"Being able to track elections in my role as the Archives intern and encouraging people to vote with the CEEP fellowship has been such an honor," Holtkamp said. "It's an important election cycle, and I really feel like I'm making a difference."

Zoey Shipley
Zoey Shipley

Zoey Shipley, a senior in political science, is the Sharon and Alice Rodine Leadership and Advocacy intern, assisting Winfrey on the Women in Iowa Politics Database and the Gender Balance Project. She is researching pathways taken by women running for and serving in state executive and legislative offices, including researching their previous elected and appointed government positions, political experience and involvement, occupations and participation in campaign training programs.

Shipley has been a Jane Greimann Legacy of Heroines scholar and has served as an Andrew Goodman Foundation ambassador since fall 2016, and is the president and founding member of the Vote Everywhere student organization. She is a member of the Cardinal Key honor society, Pre-Law club, and Pi Sigma Alpha (political science honor society). She is from Dayton, Iowa.

"Working with the Catt Center has helped me to discover my passion in politics." Shipley said. "The Catt Center has really shown me that women need a place at the table and I am excited to help keep creating those spaces for women to feel empowered to run for office."

Grace Tuzik
Grace Tuzik

Grace Tuzik, a junior in public relations with a minor in event management, is assisting Kristine Perkins, public relations/student programs coordinator for the center, as the public relations and events planning intern. Tuzik has played an important part in putting together the 2019 Women Impacting ISU calendar, planning events for the Legacy of Heroines scholars, and creating the Catt Connections student newsletter. She is also a member of the Iowa State chapter of the Public Relations Student Society of America. Tuzik is from Algonquin, Illinois.

"Working at the Catt Center has taught me so many new skills, and I am excited to continue learning!" Tuzik said.

Matthew Voss
Matthew Voss

Matthew Voss, a senior in statistics with minors in political science, computer science, economics and mathematics, is a research intern assisting Winfrey on the Women in Iowa Politics Database and the Gender Balance Project. Voss, who also worked as a research intern for the center in the spring of 2018, is researching the number of women serving as mayors and city council members in Iowa and is collaborating with ISU Extension and Outreach to examine the demographics of candidates running for city and county office.

Voss is also a member of the ISU Legislative Ambassadors, is president of the Sports Analytics Club student organization, a Campus Election Engagement Project fellow, and a member of the Memorial Lutheran Brass at the Memorial Lutheran Church and Student Center. He is from Atkins, Iowa.

"In my work at the Catt Center, I have appreciated the opportunity to gain insight in how women are involved and underrepresented in politics at every level, from local to national," said Voss.

The salaries of the student interns are supported through private gifts to the Catt Center.

In addition to the student interns, Winfrey is supervising three Iowa State students serving as ambassadors for the Andrew Goodman Foundation, an organization that seeks to involve young adults in the democratic process through on-campus engagement and social and traditional media, and three students who served through the Nov. 6 election as fellows for the Campus Election Engagement Project, a national nonpartisan organization that helps colleges and universities motivate their students to register, volunteer in campaigns, educate themselves and turn out at the polls.

"In the weeks leading up to the Nov. 6 election, the ambassadors and CEEP fellows worked to register students to vote and sought to engage and educate students about the political process,” Winfrey said.

The AGF student ambassadors are Shipley; Jacob Schrader, a sophomore in economics and political science from Sioux Center, Iowa; and Kathryn Walker, a junior in political science and history from Colorado Springs, Colorado.

"Everyone deserves the opportunity to participate in our American democracy, and we will continue to work to make that possible," said Shipley. "This has been a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I am so grateful to be a part of, and I am excited to see all the good work that we will continue to do this year."

Alex Sandeen
Alex Sandeen

The CEEP fellows were Holtkamp, Voss and Alex Sandeen. Sandeen is a senior in political science with a minor in history from Swedesburg, Iowa. He is the current editor for the student-run magazine Veritas.

"I was glad to be a part of CEEP because of its focus on voter education and civic engagement with the community by providing resources that help voters prepare for the midterm election," said Sandeen.

Voss said, "I have enjoyed getting to motivate civic engagement among Iowa State students, not only in the short term, but especially working to create a culture such that students maintain involvement in their communities beyond college and for the rest of their lives."