NBLIP program gives students immersive learning experience in the Office of the Legislative Assembly
SACKVILLE, NB – Ian Richardson, a Mount Allison University International Relations student from Ottawa, ON, has been selected as a 2021 participant in the New Brunswick Legislative Internship Program (NBLIP).
“It’s a really exciting opportunity to learn more about provincial legislative system through this internship and pair this experience with my studies,” says Richardson. “I’m honoured to be chosen for the program.”
The internships begin next week and will last until June. This year they will be completed remotely with students potentially visiting the Legislature later in the year. The positions are non-partisan; student interns will be working with MLAs from all political parties, assisting with tasks such as policy research, speech writing, and information gathering.
The internship program was launched in 2019 to give students an immersive experience and add a practical element to their in-class learning. Working in the Office of the Legislative Assembly, interns conduct research and provide assistance to MLA’s, legislative committees, and officers of the Assembly, giving them valuable hands-on experience in the legislative process and public policy development.
Mount Allison University political science professor and department head Dr. Mario Levesque says Richardson is a deserving recipient of the NBLIP internship.
“Ian is a high achiever combining academic excellence with a diverse set of experiences including previously working at the Official Residence of the Governor General of Canada, being one of the leaders of the Model United Nations student club on campus as well as a being a Teaching Assistant for our first-year politics course,” says Levesque. “He understands the need for discretion and non-partisanship and these unique experiences will serve him well as he works with various MLAs and legislative officers as will the fact he is bilingual.”
Along with his studies, Richardson is involved in the MtA Model United Nations club, the International Relations and Political Science student society, and serves as the Chief Returning Officer for the Mount Allison Students’ Union.
A fourth-generation Allisonian, Richardson says he decided to study at Mount Allison in part because he wanted to attend a smaller university and have the opportunity to travel and study outside his home province of Ontario.
“The NBLIP internship really helps illustrate these features,” says Richardson. “I’m not sure I would have had this kind of opportunity and the personal support from my professors at a larger school or in a bigger province.”
Richardson will be joined by Sue Duguay, a student at l’ Université de Moncton for the 2021 Internship.
The NBLIP program is open to all students from government-related programs (political science, Canadian public policy, economics, international relations, PPE) at New Brunswick’s four public universities, Mount Allison, St. Thomas, l’Université de Moncton, and the University of New Brunswick. It is overseen by Dr. Tom Bateman, director of the NBLIP and political science professor at St. Thomas and a committee of political science professors from across the province.