Today, I’d like to highlight Arielle Goldberg, a hardworking collegiate politico who is already making strides on Capitol Hill! She is currently a student at American University, in DC, where she is majoring in International Studies, with a focus in National Security and Foreign Policy. Arielle has interned for Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) for almost two years, this exposure has not only opened her up to new opportunities, but it has also been a launching pad for what is sure to be a successful career in politics. Beyond interning at Senator Portman’s office, she has served as a research intern for the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee and the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations which is a subset of the aforementioned committee. In such a little time, she has proved herself and has been given new roles and responsibilities. In a field that is still predominantly dominated by older men, she is an example of a young woman who has been able to break into the political scene and thrive in it. I have had the privilege of having Arielle agree to an interview about her involvement in politics, and reflections on women’s involvement in it! Check it out here:
How and when did you become involved in politics? Was there a particular event, issue etc. that got you hooked?
I didn’t truly become invested in politics until senior year of high school when I took International Relations. I wrote a thesis paper on the possibility of a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians and in doing so, had the opportunity to interview prominent scholars first hand. I was intrigued with their knowledge and understanding of the political system and it motivated me to apply to American because I wanted to be in the forefront of political life. Freshman year, I applied to be an intern for Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) and have had the opportunity to be a part of his team since. While I am just beginning my anticipated future in the political world, seeing the inner workings of the government has opened my eyes to a variety of career possibilities.
Does your family have a history of political involvement?
My family does not really have a history of political involvement, however they all keep very up to date on current events. Every night at dinner my parents would discuss what they had read in the news that day. I was always fascinated with these sorts of conversations and they inspired me to be as well versed in political issues as they are.
How do you bring your identities into your politics?
At this point in my life, I try to remain neutral and keep an open mind.
What aspects of politics are you most involved/concerned with (lobbying, running for office, issue areas)?
I am most interested in the behind the scenes of politics. Working for the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations has shed light on many issues our nation faces. Prior to working on this subcommittee, I had no idea how much work goes on behind the scenes.
Have you ever considered running for office? Which office?
I have not considered running for office, but you never know. (;
What unique barriers/advantages do you think women have when running for office?
Prior to 1920, women did not even have the right to vote. We are making great strides, but it is a constant uphill battle. Fortunately, there are powerful and talented women in the field today who are trailblazers. I do not think women have unique advantages over men when running for office and in many ways, it is still a disadvantage being a woman because men do not think women are capable. Seeing as women do not receive equal pay for equal work, and have to fight harder for everything they do in a male dominated world, there is still a lot of work to be done.
Why do you think women of color are underrepresented in politics?
Politics is a field that has historically been dominated by white men. Things are changing but there are still numerous obstacles to overcome, not just for women of color but for women in general.