D.C. Semester Highlight: Megan Onofrei

Megan Onofrei ’24 is spending her semester in the U.S. capital by participating in the Lutheran College Washington Semester (LCWS) program. A junior from Mesa, Arizona, Onofrei majors in Political Science with a minor in Psychology. Outside of the classroom, she plays defense for Roanoke College Women’s Soccer.

Megan Onofrei ’24 enjoys time on the National Mall

The Lutheran College Washington Semester allows Roanoke students to live and study in Washington D.C. while gaining professional experience through an internship. Onofrei is currently interning at the Normandy Group, a government relations firm.

Onofrei describes her internship as “well organized but also flexible and highly interactive.” Interning at the Normandy Group, Onofrei is “involved in all aspects of the firm’s responsibilities” but she notes that “I also retain the opportunity to attend Congressional hearings or networking events throughout the day that are related to the clients and projects that I am a part of.” This keeps her days “exciting and busy!”

Onofrei and roommate Jocelyn Snader ’24 attend the Senate Judiciary Committee Hearing

Onofrei’s time in D.C. has been saturated with politics, but her psychology studies have been relevant throughout. She says,

“the concepts that I have learned about in Social Psychology apply directly to the interactions that I have with work colleagues or other professionals. On a larger scale, I have seen the reality of psychological phenomena that is a driver for certain decisions made by Congress.”

The Washington semester is open to students from any major, and any type of internship can can be completed for credit! Onofrei says “psychology students should definitely consider participating in the Washington Semester because there is a lot of networking and interpersonal interaction available here!” This experiential learning and career experience will set any student apart as they prepare for graduate school or the workforce.

Onofrei and fellow LCWS students on a field trip the the Library of Congress

Professional experiences abound at LCWS! On a recent LCWS field trip, Onofrei and other students toured the Library of Congress, pictured above. Onofrei has also attended hearings of the House Oversight Committee and Senate Judiciary Committee. She says, “I have plans to sit in a Supreme Court Oral Argument later on in the semester, an opportunity that I am extremely excited for!”

Outside of the work day, LCWS provides ample opportunity to explore the nation’s capital. Onofrei has enjoyed exploring monuments and memorials, taking in the architecture of D.C., and hitting up the culinary scene by trying new coffee shops and restaurants. But her favorite recreation so far has been visiting D.C. suburbs like Alexandria and Georgetown, “it is very relaxing to walk along these long brick-lined streets, full of shops and beautiful architecture.”

Want to learn more about LCWS? Visit https://www.washingtonsemester.org/ or contact Dr. Todd Peppers (peppers@roanoke.edu) for more information!

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