As the world turns its attention to the race for the White House and the battle for control of Capitol Hill in this November’s Presidential and Congressional Elections, County Kilkenny student John Campion is preparing for an exciting summer living and working in Washington D.C.
John, from Barn, is a past pupil of CBS secondary school, James’s Street, Kilkenny and is currently studying Medicine at National University of Ireland, Galway. He was selected from more than 350 applicants to participate in the Washington Ireland Program (WIP). WIP is a cross-community charity which offers young leaders from Ireland and Northern Ireland the opportunity to live and work as an intern in Washington D.C, while completing leadership training and public service projects. WIP awards each student a prestigious two-month internship ranging from Capitol Hill to government agencies, entrepreneurial businesses and medical research.
Throughout its 18 year history, WIP has built strong links with the political elites in Washington D.C. with several interns working with then U.S. Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton and current U.S. Senator John McCain.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said: “Many of WIP’s four hundred alumni are now emerging as a new generation of leaders committed to peace, stability and prosperity in both Northern Ireland and the Republic.”
This year, John, from Barna, will be joining this unique network and building his skills in DC. “I’m really looking forward to working in Washington. Several of its hospitals and research facilities are at the cutting edge of medical innovation, making breakthroughs that have a huge impact on patients around the world, including here in Ireland. On top of that, this summer, the White House is determined (despite strong Republican opposition) to push ahead with implementing Obamacare, which aims to improve Americans’ access to healthcare services. The programme will provide me with insight into high-level experimental medicine and healthcare policy-making.”
Bryan Patten, WIP’s Executive Director, said: “This year’s class are extremely accomplished, have a track record of community service and have demonstrated their capacity for leading in their communities. They truly exemplify the quality of our young people in Ireland and Northern Ireland. The Washington Ireland Program will give them the opportunity to work with those who are leading on a global stage. This experience will further hone their skills and help create a peaceful, stable and prosperous future for Northern Ireland and Ireland.”