The University of Massachusetts Amherst

SBS in DC Internship Program Goes Virtual [Videos]

Friday, August 7, 2020

Founded in spring 2018, SBS in DC is an exciting summer internship program connecting the UMass Amherst College of Social & Behavioral Sciences (SBS) students with alumni working in the nation’s capital. 

This summer, students were placed in internships that ranged from political media organizations, to financing groups that fund infrastructure deals in under-resourced countries, to press relations in the office of senators and congresspeople. 

Typically students participate in in-person meetings, hybrid classes, and on interactive projects for their internships. While COVID-19 has prohibited any face-to-face engagements, the interns have made the best of their situations.

“I had a lot of expectations for what it would like for me and then the pandemic completely upended all of that,” said Cassie McCrath ‘21. “I was left with such a strong support system and community that really I can’t — I’m so grateful for. It’s made it so I’m not only able to complete my internship but really succeed and do well in the future.”

Cassie McGrath '21

Hermela Mebrahtu '21

With generous support from alumni and donors, students were able to dedicate as much time and energy as possible to their internships. Participating students also receive instruction from the SBS career development team before and throughout their session to support them in their professional roles.

"Having a scholarship was extremely impactful for me,” said Hermela Mebrahtu ‘21. “To know that I’m able to focus entirely on my internship without struggling to balance my schedule, going back and forth from different places, has been really helpful.”

“I don’t know what I would be doing without this program because it has opened so many doors for me,” said Ananth Krishna Shankar ‘22. “Having an internship that’s catered specifically to my interests and my needs, and having the opportunity to work with a mentor throughout the summer, that’s unlike any other internship program I’ve come across.”

Ananth Krishna Shankar '22

Jacob Spevack '21