Senator Elaine Alquist has added three SIATech/San Jose Job Corps student interns to her staff this winter. Students Angel Miranda, Holly Vo, and Liliana Ramirez began working with State Senator Alquist at her District Office in San Jose during the middle of January. The students were subject to a detailed interview process at both the school site and the Legislator’s office. All three were accepted by District Office Representative, Carol Ong.
The Legislative Interview process was lead by SIATech Principal Stefanie Bradshaw, Job Corps Business Community Liason Kathy Rich, and Social Studies Teacher Nate Malkemus. The students came through with flying colors. Each of them has a strong commitment to community involvement and expressed great interest in gaining a broader understanding of the role of legislators in serving community needs.
Senator Alquist has long been a supporter of SIATech/Job Corps students and hosted a demonstration by the SIATech Robotics team at the State Senate Chambers last year. Her District Office Representative, Carol Ong, selected all three of the applicants after interviews. Ong said, “I thought they did very well in their interviews by being prepared and were eager to learn.” Representative Ong demonstrated her confidence by selecting one of the students, Angel Miranda, to assist with a February 17, reception by the Silicon Valley Education Forum with State Superintendent of Public Instruction, Tom Torlakson. Angel had a chance to discuss education policy and his high school experience with the State Superintendent at that event. “The Superintendent has experience as a high school teacher and seemed really interested in my views” said Angel after the meeting.
Each of the SIAtech students has had a chance to see how a State Senator serves their community up close. Their responsibilities are broad and include everything from interpreting governmental forms and activities to Spanish and Vietnamese speaking constituents to helping community members navigate the many agencies involved in providing governmental services. Additionally, they aide the office in researching, data entry, participating in meetings and community events and drafting reply letters to constituents, support letters on behalf of organizations and congratulatory letters to outstanding citizens.
As to future Legislative Interns, Kathy Rich said, “Job Corps and SIATech are very proud of our students. We hope to expand this program to serve our Assembly Member and Congress Members as well. We’ve already received interest from Congressman Honda’s office. This is a great opportunity for students to gain valuable life and work experience.”