Major: Economics and International Studies
CFS Program: Field Studies in the Modern Workplace
As I walk to work in the mornings, I pass City Hall, right opposite my office building. Every day, government agencies face challenges from rising costs to growing demand for public services. How can we help them improve their performance and realise their goals? In the 21st Century, where every move of the public sector is followed in the media, governments have to attain new levels of accountability, transparency and efficiency. Working at Bronner Group, a government services consulting firm, through CFS this summer is giving me an incredible opportunity to help evaluate and search for sustainable solutions to the problems facing our cities, from transportation to public housing.
I was incredibly nervous going into my internship on the first day, not knowing what would be expected and working with clients who deal in billions of dollars. However, within my first week I had begun to look forward to my work and to learning how various public sectors operate all around the nation. The feeling that I am working on projects that could affect the millions of inhabitants of a city or state is a definite highlight of this internship and it is incredibly meaningful that I am able to see exactly where my work fits into the larger project; nothing I do is meaningless. Often, I am overwhelmed by the sheer in-depth expertise of my supervisors, and appreciate that they always take a step back to explain to me the multitude of industry acronyms that permeate conversation in the office and conference rooms.
Where my internship shows me the constant change taking place in the public sphere, and how government agencies across the country can learn from each other, the CFS class provokes reflection on what the office space, relationships and culture suggest and how they differ across industries. Through CFS, I’m able to work in a dynamic city like Chicago where public and private sector are constantly innovating and responding a changing social, technological and economic environment.