While some of her fellow political science students might be fixated on the scrum of national politics, Victoria Drzymala '23 learned early on what the longtime U.S. House Speaker Tip O'Neill knew—all politics is local. For Drzymala, governing isn't something you watch, it's something you do.
As president of the Student Senate, a Marcon Institute Fellow and the daughter of immigrants, Drzymala was uniquely qualified to spearhead the creation of a six-week internship for Lehigh students from diverse backgrounds to work with Bethlehem City government.
"I worked last summer to design an internship program for students from underrepresented backgrounds or traditionally marginalized communities to learn from elected government officials and people who work in the sphere of government and politics," Drzymala said. She contacted the office of Mayor J. William Reynolds and Janine Carambot Santoro, Bethlehem's director of equity and inclusion, and found them enthusiastic about the idea. Lya Ali, a first-year student, interned with the city this spring.
"It's great for her to have those connections," Drzymala said. "She was able to make an impact and learned a lot from her time at City Hall."