West Liberty University student Abbey Boram completed an internship in Washington, D.C. during the 2013 – 2014 school year that gave her a chance to learn from the best. She also earned 12 credit hours while fulfilling graduation requirements and enjoying the chance of a lifetime as she interned at the U.S. Marshals Service in the U.S. Department of Justice.
“I really enjoyed working there and learned so much! The whole experience stands out. It was an eye opener to me because the setting was so different from here at home,” Boram said. “Washington is so diverse. I learned a lot. The U.S. Marshal headquarters is an amazing place.”
“I looked into the internship with West Liberty because I thought it would be a great opportunity to experience the criminal justice field out of the area. I was especially excited to be interning in our nation’s capitol.” Boram lived in the NoMa area, a rapidly developing neighborhood located just north of the U.S. Capitol and Union Station and named for its location – North of Massachusetts Avenue.
“Returning to WLU following her internship, she was able to apply a lot of what she learned in D.C. to her classes, including a detailed research project in her research methods course. She is an excellent student who holds down a full time job while performing well in the classroom,” said Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice Keith Bell.
Her internship duties included clerical work in the Office of Court Security, Research and Evaluation Branch that dealt with the courthouses throughout the United States and the safety of the judicial systems.
She conducted research into explosives trace detection technology and identified manufacturers in the industry, researched and reported on additive manufacturing as well as the Real ID Act and it’s implications for security screening and entry into federal court facilities. She also took a class on Forensic Psychology.
Since security systems and safety was her focus, it opened up her eyes to the many threats faced daily by the U.S. Marshal.
Like many criminal justice majors she got into her chosen field because she wants to help people and protect the public and her Washington internship added to her experience in a hands-on, unique way.
“It was everything I hoped it would be. I met other students from other regions and we learned and shared with each other as we performed our duties. I encourage every student to look into this internship opportunity,” she said.
A resident of Wheeling, Boram will return to the WLU campus in the fall to complete her Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice degree. A hard worker, she also hopes to return to our nation’s capital in the future for work.
Currently, Boram works part time at Lowe’s Home Improvement store in Wheeling.
Her internship was arranged by WLU’s Beverly Burke, senior administrative assistant to the provost. Burke is the campus liaison to the Washington Center, which for more than 35 years has helped students from around the world gain valuable experience, and set them on a course of achievement, leadership and engagement in their communities through its internship program.
Burke has arranged internships for approximately 70 students since West Liberty first became affiliated with the Washington Center in 1997.
She also serves on the National Liaison Advisory Board to the Washington Center for Internships and Academic Programs, which gives her the opportunity to stay abreast of new initiatives and programming as they become available to students and to ensure that WLU students are getting the most out of the experience.
Students in Washington right now include rising seniors Justin Byers, Bunker Hill, W.Va., interning with the Department of Justice and Tyler McGary, Flushing, Ohio, interning with the Department of the Interior. Byers is a criminal justice major and McGary is a finance and accounting major. Both began their internships on May 28.
“The Washington internships give West Liberty criminal justice students the opportunity to learn from students all over the country as well as organizations on the state and federal level. For many students, this is the first opportunity to live in a major city and the life and work experience that each takes away is rewarding. Students who have taken advantage of the Washington Internship have greatly expanded their employment opportunities in the criminal justice field through extensive work experience and countless professional references,” said Bell.
For more information on the Washington Center program at WLU, please visit westliberty.edu or contact Burke at [email protected].