The 14 new Freshman Internship Program members rushed from station to station, talking to every IU Student Government executive branch member in sight. For 56 minutes, they scribbled on paper, bobbed their heads, shook hands, talked quickly, made intense eye-contact and answered questions.
IU Student Government executive branch and FIP members met 7 p.m. Tuesday in the IUSG office at the Indiana Memorial Union for the first time. The purpose of the meeting was to address a few ongoing projects, such as the Bird and Lime survey and to welcome the new FIP members.
For the last few weeks, the FIP members went through an interview process and were narrowed from a 43-person pool down to 14.
Freshman Maddie Butler said she was excited to be selected and ready to meet other people who shared her interests.
“Mainly, I was looking forward to meeting everyone in the program because it seems like an awesome group of people, like a good support group to be a part of on campus,” Butler said.
An important aspect of the FIP is when one member works with either one or two IUSG directors on a specific project for the remainder of the first semester, said Matt Stein, student body vice president.
“There is a mentor-mentee relationship that is fostered between the director and the intern,” Stein said. “Interns see a firsthand account of what it is like to be in student government pursuing these objectives and accomplishing goals on behalf of the students.”
In order for both the freshmen and leaders in the executive branch to find a good fit, they participated in a speed-dating-like activity. The policy directors and executive team members sat in their respective locations around the IUSG office while the freshmen walked from station to station for a three-minute conversation about their possible project and their interests in IUSG.
“What impact do you want to have on IU?” said Joe Bergin, IUSG director of city relations. “What’s an issue on campus that you have noticed?”
The interns were asked to rank the executive branch members at the end. These rankings will help members of the FIP selection committee to make the mentor-mentee pairs, FIP coordinator Becca Townsend said.
The other important part of the FIP is the eight-week course, where the freshmen learn about IUSG, IU’s campus and how to develop certain leadership skills.
During the meeting, the freshmen met the course instructor, Alison Miron.
“This is a really small setting where students get to really hone in on certain skills and develop those,” Miron said. “I’m really excited because I actually get to work with students on a consistent basis and develop relationships with them.”