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Department ofPolitical Science


2021 Panetta Congressional Intern Kaylen Chase '23

Learn more about Kaylen's experience in Washington, D.C.!

Kaylen Chase ‘23, a political science and economics double major, spent fall of her junior year in Washington, D.C., as part of the Panetta Institute for Public Policy’s Congressional Internship Program. Each year, one Santa Clara student is selected for this prestigious program. 

Kaylen spent two weeks in August at California State University-Monterey Bay where she attended an intense two-week orientation program. Interns participated in discussions led by twenty-five renowned policy experts, including Secretary Panetta, on pressing public policy issues such as cyber security, fiscal responsibility, and affordable healthcare. Later that month, Chase headed to Washington D.C. to begin her internship in the Office of Congressman Jimmy Panetta ’96 (CA-20). She arrived during an exciting time on the Hill, in the midst of debates surrounding two of the largest social spending bills since FDR’s New Deal -- the Build Back Better Plan and the Infrastructure Plan. 

Working in a congressional office provided Chase with an inside perspective on the nation’s most pressing issues as they unfolded in real time. Kaylen attended committee hearings, meetings, and receptions with national experts in areas including health care policy, fiscal responsibility, and labor issues. Her most notable experience was when she attended the Joint Economic Committee’s hearing on creating a stronger labor market. Kaylen also established connections with several SCU alumni working on The Hill. 

Kaylen proudly represented SCU during her time in the program and was asked to deliver the keynote address to fellow students and Panetta Institute staff at the farewell reception. In her address, Kaylen highlighted the work of students in the program and their ability to believe in themselves, and extended her gratitude to the Panetta Institute and the support of SCU.


panetta, poliintern