EWC’s Patterson Reflects on Wyoming LSO Internship

Apr 8, 2024 | Regional News

Torrington, WY (from EWC) April 8th, 2024 — Eastern Wyoming College freshman, Brandon Patterson, spent the legislative session in Cheyenne as an intern for the Legislative Service Office (LSO).

He knew he would be busy from the orientation meeting on Feb 10. When he and the other college interns had a day-long briefing about their roles.

“I hit the ground running and it was non-stop, long days and sometimes evenings until the last day, March 8,” Patterson said. “I spent a lot of time in committee hearings.”

Each day, Patterson would check in at the LSO office and then head out for his assignments.

“I think what impacted me the most was that the legislators work really hard, long days, during the session,” Patterson added. “The whole process also confirmed my goal of teaching social studies in a Wyoming high school.”

He and the other interns met Wyoming’s state officials including the Governor and First Lady, the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Justice Kautz of the Wyoming Supreme Court, the Secretary of State and the State Treasurer, the Speaker of the House and the Majority and Minority Leaders and lobbyists and found, “we got to hear a very different side and different view of their job and the issues than we hear as a member of the general public.”

Most surprising, according to Patterson, was “how much less contentious it was than what I imagined. Maybe that was because it was a budget session, but it wasn’t the amount of arguing I expected.”

The internship is an opportunity provided through the Social Science degree at EWC. According to Professor Ellen Creagar, “this is often transformational for students. Brandon and I are so grateful to the E.W.C. Foundation and the Student Senate for contributing money so that Brandon could take advantage of this experience.”