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An inside look at state politics

Courtesy photo.

For Northeastern University junior Kate Buckley, the energy circulating through the Massachusetts State House is an invigorating rush that she hasn’t experienced anywhere else.

“It’s such a hub of action,” explained Buckley, a political science major. “Anything that happens in this building is newsworthy, and now I’m a part of that.”

Buckley is but one of a handful of Northeastern students on co-op or completing internships at the State House for Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick’s administration. Northeastern’s co-op program has longstanding ties to the State House: Students have worked for the governor’s office, state legislators and in state agencies.

Buckley, whose family has long been involved in local politics, said it’s a privilege for her to work in the governor’s administrative office, where she helps manage day-to-day operations. “We handle so much information that it affects everyone in the governor’s office,” she said.

Third-year political science and economics dual major Jonas Edwards-Jenks is on co-op in the governor’s press office. He is part of a small team that sends out press releases, promotes events and initiatives and works with state government beat reporters.

He has also formed a close working relationship with members of the State House press corps and local news organizations, which cover the governor’s every move – from press conferences on Beacon Hill to a busy schedule that takes him across the state.

“It’s great to see things in action here,” Edwards-Jenks said. “Governor Patrick is someone I really admire, and it’s great to be a part of his team.”

In his versatile role, Edwards-Jenks also supervises several interns who work at the State House a few times a week.

One of those interns is Wyatt Ronan, a sophomore communication studies major who worked for the Patrick administration last semester. As part of a service learning class, he collaborated with staff to prepare several speeches for the governor, including his Veteran’s Day address.

“It was an amazing experience,” Ronan said. “We worked hard to capture the governor’s voice when we were writing, so it was great to hear him deliver remarks we had written.”