Editor's note: Intern Spotlight is a Ball State Daily News series profiling Ball State students and their internships. If you have any suggestions as to who we should feature next, send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since he was a child, Aiden Medellin, sophomore political science major, has always wanted to work in public services.
As he got older, Medellin decided the best way to help instigate change was by holding a position in government.
Medellin earned this chance when he received an internship at the Indiana Statehouse and was paired with Sen. Karen Tallian from December 2017 to March 2018.
“[This internship] not only allows [interns] to see how the state government works, it allows them to put together a network of people that will help them advance their career or mentor them,” said Adam Jones, Tallian’s legislative assistant. “It hopefully broadens their worldview to other people’s issues in life and teaches them how to be confident and good at addressing the public or individuals in a professional manner.”
During his internship, Medellin was tasked with listening to comments and concerns from people Tallian represents as well as analyzing around 900 surveys regarding various policies. Then, at the end of the week, Medellin would present the information to Tallian.
Tallian and Medellin then would discuss the issues they were presented with and come up with responses.
The process of speaking with constituents and opposing politicians, Medellin said, was not always easy because he never knew what type of person he was going to talk to.
“Rather than trying to attack people who have opposing views, you need to take a stance where you sit back and listen,” Medellin said. “But at the same time, you need to formulate a reason why you have your view. If you don’t even know how you feel about certain things, then how do you expect to be able to defend your view?”
Medellin was also selected to be part of three separate committees that help move bills into session, including the Appropriations Committee, Military and Veteran Affairs and Transportation and Homeland Security.
In working together, Tallian said she was able to see Medellin’s passion for politics and his ability to communicate with others allowed him to effectively complete tasks that were assigned to him.
“Aiden was a pleasure to work with,” Tallian said. “He was always responsive and very interested in how the Statehouse works. He is a humble guy and was always willing to put in extra effort with everyone.”
During his internship, Medellin said he was stunned that he was able to see the legislative process in such detail, and in the future he hopes to work as a legislative assistant for a senator at the Indiana Statehouse.
“I want to change how Americans view politics,” Medellin said. “Everyone likes to complain and moan, but the problem is you haven’t been using your voice. Especially in college, you have the ability to make a change, it’s whether or not you want to utilize that.”