The 2012 edition of the Thinkers and Doers Summer Internship Blog has launched with 12 student bloggers focusing on policy issues for a variety of governmental, non-governmental and non-profit organizations around the world. From domestic criminal justice policy issues in Texas, to issues of poverty and outreach in Guatemala, these student interns will share their on-going stories as they develop the skills to become change agents in the world of public affairs. We invite you to meet our bloggers and learn about their various policy interests and then follow along as they describe their fieldwork.


Jenny Achilles and Ahmed Hakeem - McLain Association for Children

Jenny Achilles and Ahmed Hakeem are Master of Public Affairs (MPAff) students working for the McLain Association for Children (MAC) in the Republic of Georgia where they will perform in-depth evaluations of nine MAC programs. Blogging as a duo, Jenny and Ahmed began work on this project in a Programs Evaluations class with LBJ School Professor Carolyn Heinrich. They are now working on the ground in Georgia to further refine their project and begin implementing their evaluation. Jenny and Ahmed are also beneficiaries of the William H. Crook Fellowship Program from the Robert S. Strauss Center for International Security and Law, which is providing funding for their stay in Georgia.

Read Jenny and Ahmed's first blog posting.


Becca Moore - People Helping People GlobalBecca in Granada

Becca Moore is a Master of Global Policy Studies (MGPS) student working for People Helping People Global (PHPG), a micro-lending organization in Granada, Nicaragua. PHPG offers micro-loans to individuals in Nicaragua who earn less than $2 a day, enabling disadvantaged entrepreneurs to start or expand a business. Becca will be assisting local staff with the loan process, identifying ways to increase efficiency and effectiveness and acting as a liaison between donors and recipients. Becca is also a recipient of a William H. Crook Fellowship, which is providing Becca with funding to support her stay in Granada.

Read Becca's first blog posting.


Danny in the CNN NewsroomDanny Guerra - CNN en Espanol

Danny Guerra is an MGPS student working for CNN en Espanol in New York City on reports with local, national and international impact. Danny's internship combines his interests in public policy, U.S. and Latin American relations and journalism, allowing Danny to garner valuable real-world experience reporting on issues that directly affect Latin America and Latinos in the United States.

Read Danny's first blog posting.


Lipika Ahuja - ACCESS Health InternationalLipika Ahuja

Lipika Ahuja is an MPAff student working in India with ACCESS Health International, a nonprofit working with the government of India, the World Bank and international development organizations to bring innovations to the health sector of India and the rest of the world. Lipika will be studying specific for-profit models for primary care that could be adopted by the public sector.

Read Lipika's first blog posting.


Lauren WatersLauren Waters - Texas Criminal Justice Coalition

Lauren Waters is an MPAff student working for the Texas Criminal Justice Coalition in Austin, Texas. Lauren will be working primarily to help policy makers identify ways to help non-violent offenders find jobs and obtain economic stability after re-entering society. Lauren's work will include database construction, survey research, writing policy briefs and much more.

 Read Lauren's first blog posting.


Cody Rothschild - Mayan FamiliesCody Rothschild

Cody Rothschild is an MPAff student working for Mayan Families, a non-profit working in the Lake Atitlan area of Guatemala. Cody is interested in nonprofit management and will be working with Mayan Families to make sure that beneficiaries of donations are getting what they truly need. Cody is also a recipient of a William H. Crook Fellowship, which is providing Cody with funding to support her trip.

Read Cody's first blog posting.

Ala AhmadAla Ahmad - Palestinian Hydrology Group

Ala Ahmad is an MGPS student specializing in global governance and international law.  Ala is spending her summer in the West Bank interning with the Palestinian Hydrology Group (PHG) where she will be writing an independent research report on foreign aid effectiveness in the West Bank water sector. She is also assisting PHG with reporting evaluation, and field visits. Ala is also a Crook Fellowship recipient.

Ross Van Horn - International Policy Center for Inclusive GrowthRoss Van Horn

Ross Van Horn is an MGPS and Latin American studies dual degree student. Before coming to the LBJ School and the Latin American Studies institute (LLILAS), he spent a year in Brazil as a Fulbright fellow conducting research on Brazil’s national biofuel program in the northeast of the country. This summer, Ross is working for the International Policy Center for Inclusive Growth, an affiliate research center of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Brazil. Ross is also a Crook Fellow.

Read Ross's first blog posting.

Hanna Murphy-Pack - The United Nations Development Program-Iraq Office

Hanna Murphy-PackHanna Murphy-Pack is an MPAff student who previously worked in municipal politics and government. Her research interests include international development and aid, post conflict reconstruction and national security policy. This summer Hanna is interning with the United Nations Development Program-Iraq Office. Hanna is also a Crook Fellow.

Read Hanna's first blog posting.

Sarah DeCuir - UNDP Regional Centre in CairoSarah DeCuir

Sarah DeCuir is an Austin, Texas native pursuing her MGPS degree. Her academic interests are foreign policy, national security and diplomacy. She hopes to work in, around, or about the Middle East, and loves the opportunity to eat ta’amiyya and learn Egyptian slang during her internship with the UNDP Regional Centre in Cairo. Sarah is also a Crook Fellow.

Read Sarah's first blog posting.

Chelsea Brass - Office of Texas State Senator Royce West

Chelse BrassChelsea Brass is an MPAFF student working for State Senator Royce West (D-Dallas) at the Texas Capitol in Austin. Senator West is Chairman of the Intergovernmental Relations Committee, and a member of Senate committees on Finance, Education, Higher Education, and Health and Human Services. Chelsea will be assisting the Legislative Director mostly with Health and Human Services, which includes working on issues of Medicare/Medicaid reform, the expansion of managed care, fraud reform and developmental disabilities.

Read Chelsea's first blog posting.