At Christendom’s Commencement Ceremonies this past May 13, commencement speaker Dr. John Haas warned graduates about the challenges they would soon face, from rampant secularism to a culture that has turned its back on its Judeo-Christian tradition. And yet, he further encouraged graduates, telling them that they have the skillset necessary to make a difference in such a culture — especially at the political level. Three recent graduates are now taking on this responsibility, moving to Washington, D.C., to make a positive difference for their country.
For each of these graduates, this is not their first time venturing into politics. Since her freshman year at Christendom, Maggie Black has been taking on internship after internship, serving in Senator John Barasso of Wyoming’s office, for the Heritage Foundation, and for the American Legislative Exchange Council. All of these experiences helped prepare her for her natural next step after graduation: taking on a full-time role on Capitol Hill.
“I am excited about this new position because it is the beginning of a new chapter in my life,” says Black, who majored in political science and economics. “Throughout my time at Christendom, I have been preparing for a job in the political field, so this position is the culmination of a lot of work and dedication from these past four years.”
Black will serve as the Legislative Correspondent for her former boss, Senator John Barrasso, returning to his office after working as an intern for him in 2020. In her role, Black will primarily be tasked with researching, anticipating, drafting and responding to inquiries that the office receives, helping to directly serve the constituents from her native state of Wyoming.
Over the course of her four years, Black worked relentlessly in pursuit of her career goals, serving not only in internships but also in multiple positions on campus, including as Vice President and President of College Republicans, founder and leader Christendom’s Network of Enlightened Women chapter, and President of the Senior Philanthropy Board. The hours spent studying, working, and serving others finally paid off, giving her the opportunity to go out and restore the culture for Christ.
“I am so glad that I will be able to be a part of restoring the culture for Christ and serving Wyoming constituents,” says Black. “I am also looking forward to where my career will take me, I am not seeking out flashy opportunities or positions that pad my resume — I simply want to be an instrument of Christ and put my gifts to use for Him.”
Joining Black on Capitol Hill will be fellow graduate Mary McCloskey, who will be returning to the Heritage Foundation after serving there as an intern last summer. McCloskey, who also majored in political science and economics, first discovered Heritage after making a visit to their Washington, D.C., office during her junior year. Following that visit and the internship that followed, McCloskey felt called to pursue a full-time role with the conservative think tank.
Working with political science and economics professor Dr. Kevin Burns, McCloskey made her application for the Heritage Foundation as strong as possible, ultimately getting a position with the organization. Now, she will be working as a Social Policy Research Assistant, aiming to be a positive force for change in American politics.
“I am so excited to make a difference in the American culture, especially in the areas of religious liberty, the pro-life movement, and education,” says McCloskey.
In her role, McCloskey will be doing policy research and providing administrative support to the departments of life, family and religious liberty, education, technology, healthcare and welfare. She sees her background at Christendom as the perfect springboard into this new career, providing her with the education necessary to find success in a challenging field.
“Christendom has given me an invaluable education which has taught me to apply broad principles to specific circumstances,” says McCloskey. “It has instilled in me a love of learning, and, most importantly, has made me more in love with my faith than ever. I am so blessed to have received such a high-quality education which values truth, goodness, and beauty.”
Recent graduate Alice Seeley agrees with McCloskey, seeing her Catholic liberal arts education as key to helping her develop the soft skills necessary to stand out from her peers and find success in Washington. With graduation behind her, Seeley will be working for the Fund for American Studies, helping to inspire people to be pro-liberty leaders in their communities.
“My liberal arts education at Christendom prepared me for success by making me learn how to think for myself, become a well-rounded person, and deepen my faith,” says Seeley. “It has helped me develop leadership, communication, and critical thinking skills that will be invaluable in my life.”
Seeley previously worked in internships for STRIVE3, the Leadership Institute, the Acton Institute, Campus Reform, and others, crediting Career and Professional Development Director Kristin Stephens for helping her foster connections, edit her resume, and more. Now, she will be working as Continuing Education Program Coordinator for the Fund for American Studies, coordinating day-of logistics for events, maintaining databases, and assisting in fellowship recruitment and admissions.
Together, Black, McCloskey, and Seeley are the latest set of graduates to head to nearby Washington, D.C., following graduation, ready to bring their Christendom education to Capitol Hill. Christendom’s liberal arts education and vibrant Catholic culture has led to many students and graduates working in politics following graduation, helping to defend life in the halls of Congress and bring integrity back to journalism.
Black, McCloskey, and Seeley are striving to make their country a better place in their new roles, using their Christendom education to make a difference in a culture that desperately needs positive change. They will face many challenges in Washington, but they have been formed for this very purpose: to go out into the culture and “restore all things in Christ.”