Chattanooga State’s Bolden Awarded Borgen Internship

Friday, February 19, 2021 - by Betty Proctor, Chattanooga State

Jacob “Jake” Bolden, a political science major and Global Scholar at Chattanooga State Community College, was recently awarded a 12-week Political Science Internship through the Borgen Project. Only five percent of applicants to the Borgen Project’s internship programs are selected to be a part of the organization. Mr. Bolden said he applied because of the positivity it brings to the world. “If my goal is to help people, why not start now?” he commented. 

Enthralled by a love of history since elementary school, Jake’s interests have branched out to include government, politics, and world affairs, and he says the internship will cause him to focus on the world with a new perspective. Currently enrolled in Comparative World Politics, Jake believes that simultaneously learning about the world and working on global issues are natural complements. He says his first year at Chattanooga State was “amazing” and that Political Science Associate Professor Dr. Liz Norell reignited his passion for learning. “I don’t know if I ever would have applied for the Global Scholars program or the internship if it wasn’t for her being an inspiration,” stated Mr. Bolden. 

The Political Affairs internship will require Jake to assist the nonprofit in fundraising, calling the constituents of our local and national representatives, and to lobby our government, specifically Chattanooga’s local congressman, to support legislation that encourages the United States to use its money and power to combat poverty domestically and internationally. “Our Defense budget for the 2020 fiscal year was about $700B whereas the International Affairs budget only received $56.6B,” noted Jake. “I consider it a priority to reevaluate our priorities as a superpower and focus on combatting poverty to make the world a better place all around instead of viewing the rest of the world as potential military targets.” 

“Jake is one of the most motivated and curious students I’ve ever taught,” says Dr. Norell, proudly. “This internship opportunity will really allow him to grow his knowledge about global poverty, and it will give him marketable skills for nonprofit work. I’m excited to see how he learns and grows through this prestigious opportunity.” 

Mr. Bolden has aspirations to become an attorney and work to assist individuals that may not be able to afford proper legal representation. Concerned about wrongful incarceration rates, Jake says, “Educating myself on the subject will allow me to understand, comprehend, and better strategize any future battles I may encounter within our flawed criminal justice system.”


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