Six students from the School of History and International Relations got a close encounter with US President Donald Trump’s weekend inauguration.
The students, in Washington DC as part of their eight-week internship on Capitol Hill, witnessed President Trump become the country’s 45th President during their Study Overseas Short-term Mobility Project at Flinders.
Clinton Donald, Chloe Waterhouse, Meaghan King, Brett Colmer, Jack Lewis and Josh Sunman all participated in the extraordinary experience of attending the 58th Presidential Inauguration during their time based at the Congressional offices of the House of Representatives or the US Senate.
This year marks the 100th student to participate in the program since inception which represents the greatest presence in Washington achieved by any University outside of the United States.
Brett Colmer said all the interns felt privileged to attend the Trump Presidential Inauguration.
“It was a significant moment in modern American political history,” he said from Washington DC.
“Regardless of personal opinions on President Trump, we each appreciated the enormity of what we were witnessing.
“The country is well and truly divided as it stands, and all eyes will continue to be fixated on the newly elected President’s every move.”
The long-running Flinders intern program has the support of the US Embassy in Canberra and the Australian Embassy in Washington.
Professor Don DeBats, director of American Studies at the Centre for US and Asia Policy Studies (CUSAPS) at Flinders, was invited to the inauguration by The Funds for American Studies (TFAS), another supporter of the internship program since its inception in 2000.
The aim of the internship is to allow Flinders students with an interest in American society, politics, history and culture to experience the reality of political life from the inside.
The project fosters greater knowledge and understanding while helping to train the next generation of leaders and managers of the strategic US-Australia alliance.
The funding is provided as part of the Australian Government’s Endeavour Mobility Grants which will see 67 Flinders University students take part in mobility projects this year throughout 2017.
For more information on the Endeavour Mobility Grants, visit https://goo.gl/b03Vfz.
For more information on the Washington Internship Program and blog posts on the interns activities, visit http://goo.gl/h1Gh7e.