Rep. Dick Ottinger (D-NY), co-founded EESI
As a donor to EESI’s work to engage Congress on energy and climate change, you have been making a difference.
You have been helping to mentor undergraduate students and recent graduates with educational and transformative internships that help advance resilience, further consensus building, and defend against policy rollbacks! EESI’s Richard L. Ottinger Internship Program enables staff to provide guidance and opportunities to three to five interns each semester of the year.
Dick Ottinger (former Representative, D-NY), one of the first environmentalists in Congress, was a co-founder of EESI. For many years, he was our Board Chair and he remains on our Board of Directors to this day. EESI’s interns are always inspired by Dick’s work and go on to become the next generation of professionals in the energy, climate, and environmental fields—which is critical!
In fact, one of EESI’s recent interns, Emma Dietz, recently explained what EESI’s internship meant to her and why it felt so unique to her. You can feel good that you are part of this special experience as well!
“From my first day, I was working on meaningful, relevant projects. I was eagerly welcomed aboard as a member of the team, and tasked with taking over the Congressional Record and managing the social media accounts. I was given a protocol on writing articles for EESI, and then quickly assigned a topic. By my second week, I had two web articles published.
Everyone at EESI is responsive and helpful; they seek opportunities to help you engage with their work, and as an intern, you very much feel like part of the team. What’s more, the input I received on my work greatly helped me develop my skills as a writer and a critical thinker. By the end of my 11 weeks as an intern, I had 10 web articles published, contributed to two major fact sheets, and assisted with a host of other fascinating projects. Being given these opportunities as an intern is rare, and it’s one of the unique features of the EESI intern program that makes it so special.
As an EESI intern, no two days are the same—you are constantly engaging with new topics and broadening your horizons. I was immersed in policy issues ranging from revamping the energy grid, to improving public housing. I was encouraged to attend local events; some of my favorites included Congressional hearings (with titles such as “Make the EPA Great Again”), and talks by well-known scientists on climate change, or the future of the low-carbon economy. I was able to visit Congressional offices, help host briefings, and learn all about the processes that contribute to creating environmental policy.
There are three words that come to mind when I reflect on my experience as an intern at EESI: substantive, engaging, and transformative. Coming out of my internship, I not only have a plethora of new knowledge, but also tangible work to show for my time there. When it came to writing articles, I was often able to choose my own topics, which meant I was always working on a project that was engaging.
And finally, the experience as a whole was truly transformative on every level. Living in D.C. at such a critical moment in history was exciting, and I saw how the work we were doing at EESI was more important than ever.
I learned the ins and outs of life in the Capitol from the staff, and was inspired by their dedication to bettering our world. By the end of my internship, I had a new goal: to one day work as a legislator who can help enact the important changes that EESI is pushing for. Without a doubt, EESI provides an internship experience like no other!”
Educating, inspiring, and building the skills of the next generation is crucial to combating the already visible signs of climate change—and you are key to making that happen.
Of course, there is still much to do to advance climate and energy solutions.
I invite you to make a generous gift to EESI today—so that we and generations to come can continue progressing towards a cleaner, healthier future.
Together we can do it!
Recent EESI intern aspires to become a legislator
EESI's Fall 2017 Interns