Victoria University of Wellington's 2007 Parliamentary Internship programme

POLS 428, the Victoria University of Wellington's Parliamentary Internship programme, provides a limited number of selected postgraduate students with opportunities to gain insights into:
* the parliamentary process;
* the roles and responsibilities of Members of Parliament;
* the functions and activities of parliamentary research units;
* the conduct of select committees; and
* the activities of parliamentary parties.

The course provides a means for students doing either postgraduate Honours degrees in Political Science, Public Policy, or International Relations or, in special cases, a Master of International Relations (MIR) degree to learn about the parliamentary process through first-hand involvement within the institution of Parliament itself. As in all postgraduate courses, the course also seeks to strengthen the ability of students to carry out independent research and to prepare research papers.

In 2007, more than thirty students applied to do POLS 428, and after a rigourous selection process which included interviewing applicants to assess their suitability as potenial interns and trying to match students' skills with the needs of Members of Parliament, twenty students were accepted as POLS 428 Parliamentary Interns. (Sadly, one intern had to withdraw from the course in the middle of the year.) The remaining nineteen interns and the MPs (and, in one instance, the member of the Parliamentary Press Gallery) for whom they worked are shown in the following Table:

Robert Addison,
an intern with
Sue Kedgley, MP

Lydia Ayto,
an intern with
Dr Jackie Blue, MP

Eileen Bredin,
an intern with
Pansy Wong, MP

Gordon Burns,
an intern with
the Hon. Mahara Okeroa, MP




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James Christmas,
an intern with
Chris Finlayson, MP

Stephen Collins,
an intern with
Dr the Hon. Lockwood Smith, MP

Katrin Frank,
an intern with
Simon Power, MP

Maureen Healy,
an intern with
the Hon. Peter Dunne, MP

Jodi Idema,
an intern with
the Hon. Pete Hodgson, MP

Scott Joblin ,
an intern with
Dr Wayne Mapp, MP

Nicola Kean,
an intern with
Brent Edwards in the Press Gallery

Ethan Kraus,
an intern with
John Hayes, MP

Oliver Lah,
an intern with
Tim Barnett, MP

Helen Lahtinen,
an intern with
the Hon. Chris Carter, MP

Julian Light,
an intern with
Nicky Wagner, MP

Nataliya Mikhenker ,
an intern with
Dianne Yates, MP

Teresa Quin,
an intern with
Dave Hereora, MP

Raukura Spindler,
an intern with
Steve Chadwick, MP

Andrei Zubkov ,
an intern with
Darren Hughes, MP

Every year, the Speaker of the House of Representatives gives a prize to the best POLS 428 Parliamentary Intern. Pictured below is Gareth Richards, who was an intern with Katherine Rich, MP, in 2006, and who received the Speaker's Prize from the Speaker, the Hon. Margaret Wilson, MP, during a special ceremony held in Parliament on 17 May 2007.