Ole Miss student completes summer internship online

Published 9:46 am Thursday, August 6, 2020

College students across the world have had to change their summer plans due to COVID-19. This is especially true for James Hirsch, who spent his summer interning online.

Hirsch, a junior at Ole Miss, interned for the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute in Washington D.C. as part of their Leadership and the American Presidency program. He is one of the first students in Public Policy Leadership and in the Lott Leadership Institute to be apart of this internship.

“This summer was the first time a Lott/PPL student has attended the Ronald Reagan Institute and Foundation Leadership and the American Presidency program,” Hirsch said. “I’m proud to be the co-inaugural nominee from the Lott Institute.”

Email newsletter signup

The Leadership and the American Presidency internship offers college students the unique experience to participate in programming as well as attend special events throughout the summer and fall. The program provides students with the opportunities and resources to interact with and learn valuable insights from top names in government, business and nonprofit organizations. While interning, students will interact with speakers who will offer their own personal lessons to further promote, educate, and encourage students about the power of leadership and civic engagement.

“I have not done an internship before,” Hirsch said. “I think working and learning virtually this summer was aided by my experience taking courses and working online during the spring. I found everyone with the program to be kind, receptive, and most importantly cognizant of the fact that we are all learning how to work best in this virtual landscape.”

Like many students this year, Hirsch has had to face a lot of changes due to COVID. One of those changes included having to do school work online and adjusting to life off campus.

“Although I terribly missed being on campus this spring, and recognize many students had trouble accessing support systems and succeeding in an online environment, I found my adjustment to online classes rather smooth,” Hirsch said. “I largely credit this to the wonderful faculty members who worked their tails off to provide a great educational experience through remote delivery.”

Hirsch is a double major in Economics and Public Policy Leadership from Kansas City, Missouri. He became interested in both after taking AP Government in high school and joining the debate team. When it came time to choose what college to go to he decided that the University of Mississippi would be a good fit for him.

“I chose Ole Miss for three primary reasons,” he said. “One was the generous academic scholarships, special programs like the Lott Leadership Institute and the Sally McDonnell Barksdale Honors College, and the focus on community and family here. I strongly believe that college decisions are more about personal fit than anything, and the ability to form relationships and support structures here is ultimately what made the decision for me.”