Intern Diary: Sara Dougherty with Jamestown Associates

By Sara Dougherty, PCM ‘19

Sara Dougherty
March 18, 2016
During election cycles it is practically impossible to escape the endless campaign advertisements, commercials, and political reporting. Most consider this to be an annoying reality of the modern political atmosphere, but many of us are fascinated by the media coverage of politics and want to learn more about the behind-the-scene workings of media and politics.

Jamestown Associates is a private political consulting firm with offices in DC, Philadelphia, Florida, Louisiana, and New Jersey. Most of the Jamestown DC office’s responsibilities include accommodating needs of clients and candidates while in DC and producing campaign video ads.

The knowledge I have gained through my classes in the School of Media and Public Affairs (SMPA) has set me apart from other interns in the office. SMPA has helped me adjust to the ever-evolving, intertwined world of media and politics, and this has aided me enormously in performing my duties at Jamestown.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays my alarm rings at exactly 5:22 a.m. and I compile clips of the national news from the past twenty-four hours and any news pertaining to our clients. I sift through articles and trending tweets, using my judgement to compile an email of the most important news to send out to the entire company so employees have a sense of the day’s news before they get into the office. My other intern duties include assistance with production of campaign ads, accommodating clients, and research.

Every day at the office is fast-paced with new experiences—from helping with campaign ads, to creating detailed reports of upcoming congressional elections. A few weeks ago I assisted with a video shoot at Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) 2016. I was tasked with managing the audio and I got an inside look of the day-to-day life of a senatorial candidate. As a political junkie, attending CPAC was an exciting and interesting experience for me.

I am grateful for my experience at Jamestown Associates and the experiences and knowledge I have gained pertaining to the world of media and politics. The lessons I have learned at Jamestown have extended the lessons I have learned in the classroom. I hope to gain further knowledge and experience in the ever-expanding world of media and politics.