April 9, 2003
Student Named Finalist
"To be selected as a Presidential Management Intern finalist is an honor for both Rafiell and the Master of International Management program of Whitworth's School of Global Commerce and Management," says the school's dean, Kyle Usrey, who nominated Jones for the internship. "Rafiell will do well. And I'm proud to say that his education at Whitworth and in our globally focused Master of International Management program was apparently a key factor in his selection. In our complex world today, it is crucial for the future leaders of our country to have intensive global training and focus, particularly in areas of political risk, cross-cultural communications, international trade, and management that form the heart of our curriculum."
Jones is a Chicago native who served 20 years in the U.S. Air Force before retiring in 2000 to attend Whitworth. He earned his undergraduate degree through Whitworth's Liberal Studies program in 2001; he is currently completing an internship with Partner's International and will graduate from the Master of International Management program in May. Jones said he was attracted to the program because it built on the leadership and international experience he gained during his military career, which included overseas placements in Germany and the Azores.
Jones and the other Presidential Management Internship finalists will attend a job fair April 14-16 in Washington, D.C., to meet with representatives of federal agencies who will make hiring decisions to fill the 400 internship slots. Jones says he is seeking a position in the Department of Veteran's Affairs, the International Trade Association at the Commerce Department, or the National Institutes of Health.
"I'm interested in the Commerce Department because of what I've learned in my MIM program at Whitworth," says Jones, who credits his wife, Elaine, and Usrey for their support in pursuing a Presidential Management Internship and being named a finalist. "With the world becoming more and more interconnected, I think the International Trade Association would be a great fit."
James Wilson, Deputy Director of the Presidential Management Internship program, said that the number of applications to the program has doubled in the past several years while the academic caliber of students and the experience level they bring also has increased significantly. This has made the selection process much more competitive, he says.
"The program has grown in stature and relevance in terms of the role it plays in filling senior-level jobs in government; the level at which PMIs come into the federal government is very attractive," Wilson says. "The resurgence of patriotism and interest in public service due to the events of the past two years also plays a part.
The Presidential Management Intern Program was established by Presidential Executive Order in 1977. It is designed to attract to the federal service outstanding graduate students from a wide variety of academic disciplines who have an interest in, and commitment to, a career in the analysis and management of public policies and programs. It is a two-year internship program, which enables graduate-degree students to be appointed to federal positions as interns and to also have the opportunity to be converted to a permanent federal civil service position following their successful internship.
Acceptance into the program begins with the prospective intern submitting an application that has been signed by the dean, department chair, or program head of the applicant's school of study. In January and February each year, a group of semi-finalists participate in a day-long assessment where their oral and written skills are tested. In addition to Jones, Whitworth Master of International Management Student Jane Kolar was selected as a semi-finalist. Approximately 700 finalists are selected and notified in March, and the application process culminates with their names being placed in an intern pool from which agencies select about 400 individuals for internships.
The School of Global Commerce and Management was formed in 2001 to emphasize the longstanding international focus of Whitworth's undergraduate and graduate business programs. This focus is reflected in the college's multicultural literacy requirement for all graduates, in recent curricular revisions and new courses and in the recruitment of faculty with expertise in global commerce and management. The college also has more than a dozen sister-school relationships with overseas institutions that bring about 150 international students to campus each year.
Located in Spokane, Wash., Whitworth is a private, liberal arts college affiliated with the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The college enrolls 2,200 students in more than 50 undergraduate and graduate programs.
Kyle Usrey, dean, School of Global Commerce and Management, (509) 777-4585 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rafiell Jones, student in Whitworth's Master of International Management program, (509) 534-2949 or email@example.com.
Greg Orwig, director of communications, (509) 777-4580 or firstname.lastname@example.org.