DC-area alumni welcome students to expanded Gateway and HEDGE externship program

In early February, Rice alumni volunteers in Washington, D.C., welcomed 12 undergraduates to an expanded externship program that offers career advising, job-shadowing and networking opportunities with D.C.-area attorneys.

Alumni volunteers Matt Haynie ’03, Ann Reinke ’94, Ron Slimp ’04, Thu Nguyen ’17 and Sam Hirsch ’84 kicked off the D.C. chapter of the externship program alongside Antonio Merlo, dean of the School of Social Sciences. The program is sponsored by the School of Social Sciences’ Gateway and the School of Humanities’ HEDGE programs.

The schools also hosted a networking reception for alumni and students. 

Students themselves took part in tours and job-shadowing meant to hone their professional edge as they prepare for careers.

“My experience at Jenner and Block was the highlight of my trip,” says Allie Gonzalez ’20. “We were exposed to various aspects of law, and we heard from a panel of recent law school graduates that gave us valuable advice.” Her visit to Jenner and Block was hosted by Hirsch, who is a firm partner and former deputy associate attorney general at the U.S. Department of Justice.

“Every event I attended gave me insight I did not have before going on this trip,” says Selase Buatsi ’20.

The Gateway Program provides undergraduate students opportunities to put what they learn in the classroom to work in real life through co-curricular programs focused on developing research and professional skills for life after Rice. From shadowing a federal court judge in their chambers, to serving as a consultant for a local business or conducting cutting-edge research in the Texas Medical Center, the experiences provided are opportunities for students to gain a professional edge.

If you would like to volunteer for Gateway or the D.C. externship program, please contact Alexander Wyatt ’11, assistant director of Gateway, at alex.wyatt@rice.edu.

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