I think it was really these values of public service and political empowerment that ultimately led me to work on electoral reform at FairVote. I want to work on issues that protect and expand the opportunities for political engagement in young people, women, people of color, and so many other groups that don’t traditionally find an easy path into the political arena. FairVote shares my values of electoral access and opportunity. They work for fairer elections that will mean better representation and better political opportunities for local communities, and hopefully more paths for women and people of color into politics. I really believe in political empowerment as a mechanism of personal empowerment and an engine of social change, so I’m definitely excited to work on reforms that could bring that to more people.
One thing I really want to learn from FairVote is the skills and strategies it takes to actually enact social reforms, and to make these ideas a reality. FairVote has a whole slew of really incredible electoral reforms that could do great things for states and localities across the country, but as with most great social reforms, the path to implementation is rarely smooth. I’m really interested in learning how a nonprofit with all these great, practical ideas translates them into actual change. What steps are the best practices of moving a good idea into a good proposal, then a good policy? I’m particularly interested in this process because what I really want to do after Fair Vote is get a law degree, and then hopefully work as a legal advocate for other social issues, like women’s issues or LGBT issues. These are other areas where a lot of great ideas exist, but groups are struggling to translate them into actual law. I think there’s a lot I can learn as a future advocate/attorney from supporting FairVote as they navigate this process.
Molly Rockett is a recent graduate of the University of Connecticut and a 2015 Democracy Fellow at FairVote. Do you want to apply for a FairVote Fellowship? Find more information here: http://www.fairvote.org/who-we-are/internships-and-employment/fellowships/