For my first co-op experience, I am in DC for the very first time as an intern/fellow at CCMC. CCMC stands for Communications Consortium Media Center and we help other nonprofits with their public relations via media to influence policy change. We have developed many campaigns on a centered around a number of issues here in the United States including: women’s equality, reproductive rights, the environment, and health care. The mission statement shared on CCMC’s website shares, “Communications Consortium Media Center seeks to influence public debate in ways that support individual rights, healthy families, cultural diversity and a sustainable environment. We believe collaboration among nonprofit groups sharing goals is an effective way to gain credibility and influence public policy. CCMC works to empower diverse and underrepresented communities to participate more fully in decisions affecting their lives.”
The mission statement was a mission I wanted to take part in. Currently, CCMC is primarily focused in on women’s issues and it was made sure that I had a strong passion for women’s rights before I was accepted into my position as an intern. I had to be comfortable being in a strong feminist atmosphere. I knew that I would be a great fit for the type of passion they were searching for. Since around the time I was fifteen, I began to take a strong interest in advocating for women’s rights, and overall support the empowerment of women around me. When I was seventeen, I interned for an organization called Dress for Success where I helped empower women in my community back in Columbus, Ohio reach economic independence. Outside the work atmosphere, I had been involved in many events, kept up with policy around women’s issues, and always tried to educate those around me on various topics around women’s issues.
Not one day is like another working at CCMC. As someone who likes to time manage, I am happy that I also have the ability to be flexible. I am given about four projects to work on at a time, I go to different events, and I run various errands. CCMC has challenged my media skills by having to use public relations platforms such as Nexis, Cision, and Emma. Other challenges have been doing things such as being able to download a speech from Youtube, edit the speech so only certain clips are included, and then put those clips together in a neat manner to be put in a presentation without instruction. On just my second day, I attended an event on Equal Pay Day where I watched actress Patricia Arquette and Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney give speeches about the gender wage gap we have here in America. What I mostly do is I compile specialized lists of reporters who are writing about certain topics relating to topics that organizations that are working with CCMC want to make pitches about. What I enjoy most about this aspect of my job is that in the process of making these lists, I am becoming very knowledgeable on the topics I am researching. For the gender wage gap, for example, I had looked at over 100 articles about it and am now very well spoken on the manner.
CCMC overall has been a great opportunity to grow in comprehension of a number of issues, challenge my media and communication skills, and establish connections in DC for my future. I am currently majoring in Political Economics at Antioch College and think that CCMC is a good first step in learning how nonprofit organizations function and getting to know how to navigate DC as a center of politics for the United States and the world.