Grassrootsefforts. Volunteer organization. Outreach. Those are some of the key skillsAshley Walukevich employs in her work for Senator Susan Collins, all ofwhich started back when she was a freshman political science major at SaintJoseph’s. And she’s far from stopping now.
Take usthrough what you do at Senator Susan Collin’s Biddeford office.
I assist herconstituents in regards to casework consisting of questions, comments, orconcerns they may have with federal issues and agencies. Some examples of thecasework include Social Security benefits, veterans’ benefits, military servicequestions, immigration issues, etc. In addition, I also do outreach in thegreater York County area, attending various events and meetings on behalf ofthe senator. It is a great honor to work hard for someone you believe in.
Was thisyour first venture into politics?
After Igraduated from Saint Joseph’s in 2012, I worked as a field director for theRomney-Ryan campaign in Boca Raton, Florida. I managed the daily officeoperations in one of the Romney Victory Offices. My tasks included budgeting,scheduling volunteers for grassroots efforts, and performing outreach events inmy area.
As a fielddirector, I recruited, managed, and maintained an infrastructure of 10 internsand over 700 volunteers to execute a successful voter contact strategy withinmy region of Palm Beach County. I built the grassroots organization within myselected area to personally contact voters through canvassing, phone banking,and hosting and attending local events. I assisted in various events at myoffice as well as at offsite locations. Some of these events included SenatorJohn McCain, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani, RNC Chairman Reince Priebus, RNCCo-chairman Sharon Day, former United Nations Ambassador John Bolton, andGovernor Romney’s wife, Ann. I also assisted in the volunteer coordination forthe final presidential debate between Governor Mitt Romney and President BarackObama at Lynn University. I was able to be onsite at the debate assisting inmanaging the volunteer efforts.
Working on acampaign is a lot of work, but it is something I greatly enjoy doing. It was agreat opportunity and an amazing experience to work for Governor Mitt Romneyand Representative Paul Ryan.
Did you prepyourself for this line of work?
I internedat Senator Susan Collins’ office all four years of my college career. Thisinternship gave me a firsthand experience with politics, allowing me to takewhat I learned in the classroom and apply it to real-world situations. It wasfoundational in my career after college. It allowed me to network and generatelasting relationships. It was a great opportunity to learn how a United StatesSenate office functions, the role of Senate employees, and how the Senator’s ConstituentService Centers, like the Portland office, can help constituents. Theinternship was a building block in my career that helped me attain the currentposition I have today in the Senator’s Biddeford office.
Did theCollege provide opportunities to gain world-real experience, which inform youto this day?
I had anopportunity to go to the United Nations in New York City, sponsored by theSisters of Mercy. We were able to meet with ambassadors, Foreign Serviceofficers, and even briefly attend the Conference on Indigenous Peoples. Also, I wasthe Political Science Club president. We worked to raise money to travel toWashington, D.C., with the help of SGA. Senator Collins’ office organizedvarious tours throughout D.C. for our club, and we were able to tour much ofthe city. Theseexperiences brought my education full circle and would not have been possiblewithout the support of the Saint Joseph’s community. There are manyopportunities, you just can’t be afraid to take them.