About the Internship
IGPA's Wolff interns are chosen from a very competitive field of applicants from the University of Illinois, usually 2-3 dozen strong, each year. Applicants come from all fields of study - engineering, agribusiness, journalism, history, political science and others. Each intern plays a key role in determining their successor by preparing the advertising for the position, reviewing application materials, participating in interviews, and consulting with IGPA leadership in making the final choice.
The internship is paid, begins each June and continues through the following academic year. The internship is built around four "modules" that are designed to expose the interns to a variety of activities that occur within a busy public-policy research institute. These modules include general office duties, public engagement logistics and execution, research, and exposure to the public policy conversation in Illinois. There are opportunities for the interns to participate fully in IGPA activities, including events in Chicago, Springfield and/or Washington, DC. The Wolff interns are treated as is any other member of the IGPA staff. We expect that the interns will perform tasks as assigned and complete them within the assigned timeframe; we expect promptness and a professional attitude; and, most importantly, we expect the interns to have a fun and rewarding experience. Our pledge is to do all we can to ensure that is so.
2020-2021 Interns - Mariama Mwilambwe, Steph Petrov, Eddie Ryan
Mariama Mwilambwe is majoring in political science at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Mariama serves as the student trustee on the University's Board of Trustees as well as a writer for the Undergraduate Law Review. Previously, Mariama served as a residential advisor, member of the subcommittee on student conduct, and press secretary for the Illinois Student Government. Recently, Mariama interned for the MacArthur Justice Center assisting on cases involving wrongful conviction and the rights of the incarcerated. After graduating in the Spring of 2023, Mariama hopes to attend law school and continue working in the public interest sector.
Steph Petrov is majoring in political science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Prior to joining the IGPA, she interned for U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth in Washington, D.C. and held two internships with the Illinois General Assembly. On campus, Steph has worked as a research analyst at the Cline Center for Advanced Social Research and was the president of Amnesty International UIUC during the 2020-2021 school year. She is also a member of the UI Women’s Glee Club. Steph hopes to pursue a career in public policy after graduating.
Eddie Ryan majors in history and economics and minors in philosophy and Spanish. Eddie is the president of the Undergraduate Law Review and writes a column for the Daily Illini. He has worked with faculty in the history department as a research assistant and is part of the James Scholar program. As a Wolff intern, Eddie is concentrating on engagement activities with scholars.
Intern Honor Roll
Wolff interns go on to do great things in their lives and we do our best to keep up with them. Below is the roster of previous interns and their current position. Included in this list are a Rhodes scholar and two former White House interns.
Ali Mirza -- 2020-2021 -- Paralegal, United Community Housing Coalition, Detroit
Adem Osmani -- 2019-2020 -- Fellow, Office of Governmental Relations, University of Illinois System
Megan Manoj -- 2018-2019 -- Student, Chicago-Kent College of Law, Chicago
Thomas Dowling -- 2017-2018 -- Entrepreneur, co-founder of tech startup TaxProper.com
Samantha Bolet – 2016-2017 -- Cyber Strategy and Governance Consultant, Risk Advisory, KPMG, Chicago
Mitch Dickey – 2015-2016 – Advocacy Coordinator, Illinois Connection, Office of Government Relations, University of Illinois System, Chicago
Ryan Fane – 2014-2015 – Law Student, University of Chicago
Neha Nigam – 2013-2014 – Judicial Law Clerk, U.S. District Court, Northern District, Illinois, Chicago
Emily Blumenthal – 2012-2013 – Global Strategic Planning Manager, Nike, Chicago
Tim Knudsen – 2011-2012 – Attorney and Partner, Croke Fairchild Morgan & Beres, Chicago; Chair, Chicago Zoning Board of Appeals
Laura Miller – 2010-2011 -- Mobilization Director, WhenWeAllVote.org, Harvard Ash Center Fellow, Washington, DC
Drew Bazil – 2009-2010 – Foreign Service Officer, U.S. State Department
Lally Gartel – 2007-2009 -- Vice President and Senior Counsel for Litigation, Guaranteed Rate, Chicago
Jacqueline Orozco – 2006-2007 – Anchor/Reporter, WSYX/WTTE-TV, Columbus, OH
Jon Monteith – 2005-2006 -- Community and Outreach Coordinator, Resilience Lab, University of Washington, Seattle, WA
About Charles P. Wolff
Charles P. "Chas" Wolff was a 1970 graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who dedicated his career to public service. He spent six years as an assistant to Senator Adlai Stevenson III. He also advised Senators Bill Bradley, D-NJ, and Robert Kerry, D-NE, and was an adviser to Vice President Walter Mondale and to Democratic presidential candidate Bruce Babbitt in his campaign for the 1988 Democratic nomination for president.
Wolff also served as Special Assistant for Intergovernmental Affairs in the U.S. Department of Commerce and was president and chief operating officer of the Roosevelt Center for American Policy Studies in Chicago.
He was elected to the University of Illinois Board of Trustees in 1986 and became its president in 1989. He served as Board president until his death from cancer in 1991.
Source: Chicago Tribune, Nov. 10, 1991
U of I Fund Agreement, Dec. 30, 2003
Photo courtesy University of Illinois Archives &
Champaign News-Gazette, Oct. 26, 1986