Week 1:
Assimilating to Washington, DC


Cornell Fellow in Political Science

Global Zero | Washington, D.C.

August 8, 2018

Welcome to my blog, where I will be documenting my experience as a field organization intern for Global Zero/Beyond the Bomb. You will be provided with a detailing of my experiences and probably laughable events that happen to my life during the span of 8 weeks, where I will be here in Washington, DC, gaining life experiences and memories.

Global Zero is a nonprofit organization who’s call to action is the elimination and nonproliferation of nuclear arms on a world scale. The continual effort to advocate for the irradiation of nuclear weapons and materials has been done through gaining the support of a list of 300 non-partisan, visionary international leaders, changemakers, and experts who support Global Zero’s initiative, in tandem with a powerful grassroots movement. For the most part, I will be doing work for the grassroots campaigning and organizing sector, which is Beyond the Bomb.

Every intern needs to take a photo with their organization’s logo, right?

Approximately 10 days ago I flew into BWI to start this journey and allow myself some extra time to settle in. ¬†I am thankful that I wasn’t pressed for time or initially in a hurry to get anywhere the day I got there, because my shuttle from the airport broke down and was left on the side of an interstate for a couple of hours. Although this was not ideal, it was indeed a memorable way to embark on a new life experience! Once rescued from the side of the road, I was able to move into my apartment and settle into my new home, located in the Adams Morgan neighborhood of the city (or AdMo, as the locals call it). I am extremely fortunate to have found a place to live in such close proximity to the Global Zero office, and for it to be in a nice area where I am able to walk to work every day. During the days leading up to my internship, I have been able to practice using public transportation, and visit some of the memorials and well-known landmarks of the area.

I visited the World War 2 Memorial and had to get a picture with Iowa!

On my first day, I was warmly greeted by my supervisor John and was instantly thrown into the mix after a brief meeting with him. I was involved in an “All Hands” zoom meeting with the entire staff of Global Zero, where progress updates are given to everyone about ongoing projects, ideas are bounced off of one and another, and major topics are discussed. This was extremely overwhelming initially, but as the week went on, I grew to understand what these goals and ongoing projects actually were.¬†Throughout the past week, I have been working on several projects, that range from contacting winners of primary elections and urging them to adopt a No First Use policy, to reaching out to youth activism organizations for an upcoming training weekend being hosted by Beyond the Bomb. Thus far, I have learned a lot about the behind the scenes work that takes place to educate and mobilize the public and elected officials that nobody truly acknowledges when thinking about nonprofit political work. I am eager to see what skills I pick up and things that I learn about in the upcoming weeks.

Isabel Light '19

Isabel is a politics major from Mount Vernon, Iowa.