Stoneham Patch Whiz Kid of the Week
- Annie DeTeso, 20
- graduate; student at University of Massachusetts
- Accomplishment: DeTeso is an intern for the State Rep. Jason Lewis, who represents Stoneham and Winchester.
Key to Awesomeness: DeTeso has always been interested in politics, but upon entering her first semester at the University of Massachusetts was when she really became involved in studying how politics work.
“Being an opinionated person, I became increasingly interested in governmental debates and enjoyed articulating why a specific point of view or policy should triumph over another,” DeTeso said. “After (high) school sparked my interest, I realized I wanted to help with my local community as best as I could.
“When I was given the chance to intern at the State House and campaign for Jason Lewis I was thrilled because even if I was working behind the scenes and on the small stuff, it was my own way of contributing to my community.”
DeTeso described her day-to-day duties at the State House and how each day brings something exciting.
“I start off my day by checking and opening mail, sorting out what is urgent for Jason to see and what can hold off for a couple of days,” DeTeso said. “Everyday can be different at the State House, sometimes I am working on a policy that Jason is trying to pass and other times I am researching a specific topic that can be beneficial to Jason. Sometimes my research can be done solely on the computer and other times I am making phone calls or emailing.
“For the campaign, I am either making calls to constituents, sending out letters, helping create new events for Jason, or canvassing out with Jason or other interns.”
DeTeso said that one of the best aspects of campaigning is working and learning from Jason Lewis.
“It doesn’t seem much like ‘work’ when I am campaigning with Jason because with such a warm personality, he keeps things calm and running smoothly,” DeTeso said. “I get to experience firsthand how a politician deals with their day-to-day activities and that in itself is unique and rewarding. Also, working in politics I am constantly meeting and talking to new people, so the social aspect of campaigning is a plus for me.”
The only aspect DeTeso really doesn’t enjoy about her internship is canvassing in hot weather.
“The worst thing about campaigning is probably the days that Jason, myself and other interns go out canvassing in the hot weather,” DeTeso said. “I don’t mind canvassing, but when you’re walking door-to-door in 95 degree weather it can get a little difficult.”
DeTeso said she has learned a great deal from her internship experience.
“I am constantly learning, almost like a big sponge, sucking up all the information I can,” DeTeso said. “I have had hands-on experience about policies and how they work. I have learned how to take my own knowledge and apply my skills to real life situations by problem-solving and research. Breaking through my comfort zone, I have learned what I can do with what I know and what I still need to work on in my studies.”