Dusty Johnson’s Weekly Column: The Value of Interns in Congress

Guest Column: The Value of Interns in Congress
By Mason Ohnstad
February 24, 2023

I grew up in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and stayed around to study Government and Philosophy at Augustana University. After graduating, I knew I needed to gain experience in politics to apply my field of study, so I applied to intern in Congressman Johnson’s office.

It only took a few days for the internship to exceed my expectations.

I’ve learned it takes a lot of work to accomplish anything in Congress. From speaking to constituents, introducing legislation, committee hearings, and so much more; the work of a Congressman is fast-paced.

Much of the work to keep up with the inner workings of Congress is done by young and intelligent individuals, known as interns.

Rep. Dusty Johnson has just 15 full-time staff across four offices, which is a similar scenario for most rural America Representatives. In order to efficiently and effectively serve the needs of over 800,000 South Dakotans, interns are hired. The intern is a vital member in any effective office. Interns also benefit from their service by gaining experience as a young professional.

A Congressional internship provides a unique opportunity to gain firsthand experience of how Congress works with insights and guidance from an office filled with advanced and established professionals.

I’m a couple months into my internship and I’ve worked on several projects assisting the press and legislative teams, giving tours of the Capitol, talking with constituents, attending meetings and briefings, and so much more.

Oh, and did I mention you go to work on Capitol Hill?!

I cannot give enough praise for how valuable this internship has been, nor can I put words to how much I recommend this experience.

The window for applying for the summer internship is open, so apply now! You can fill out the application at https://dustyjohnson.house.gov/services/internships.