The summer going into his senior Brian Iraheta applied for the Mario Umana Public Service Fellowship for East Boston High School students. Founded by Representative Carlo Basile’s Chief of Staff Adrian Madaro and Mayor Thomas Menino’s Community Liaison Ernani DeAraujo, the fellowship provides a paid internship in government service.
Iraheta was awarded the fellowship and spent the summer working in City Councilor Sal LaMattina’s office.
“For me it was perfect and a great opportunity to help me understand what local government was all about,” said Iraheta, who is now a freshman at UMass Boston and plans to study Political Science and Bio Chemistry. “The fellowship helped me to determine that public service was something I would be interested in pursuing as a career.”
Iraheta spent the summer working on the planning of Eastie’s new library and helped organize community events like Eastie Pride Day.
Now, Iraheta is encouraging more students to take advantage of the fellowship.
“I encourage anyone that wants to help his or her community in any way to apply because it’s a great program,” he said.
This year, the deadline for applications is Saturday, Mat 12. Students looking to apply can contact Adrian Madaro at [email protected] or (617) 593-3641, or [email protected] or (617) 593-0418 for an application and information.
“Three years ago Ernani (DeAraujo) and I founded a public service fellowship,” said Madaro. “This is a great opportunity for youth to get involved in public service and to see the inner-workings of local government.”
The fellowship is named after former East Boston Senator the late Judge Mario Umana, who was an EBHS and Harvard alumnus. Umana was an esteemed member of the Eastie community, serving as house representative, state senator and local municipal judge for many years. He dedicated much of his career to bettering Eastie and its residents’ lives, fighting against political corruption and airport expansion. He inspired community members with his philosophy that we all have an obligation and duty to contribute to society.
“This fellowship honors Mario Umana and his commitment to public service and civic duty,” said DeAraujo. “The purpose of this fellowship is to inspire students at the East Boston High School to consider government service as an honorable and fulfilling career.”
Umana Fellows will serve as summer interns for key government officials including the State Senator. State Representative and City Councilor.
In addition to serving as interns, fellows will participate in a speakers series and volunteer service project. The speakers series will include the local elected and appointed officials in addition to; representatives from the Boston Fire and Police departments; representatives from the state and federal judiciary; and the Mayor of Boston. The service event will be designed by the fellows and will seek to improve the quality of life in Eastie.
Fellows will be paid a stipend for 6 – 8 weeks of summer work.
EBHS students in their junior year will be eligible to apply for the internship. Students must be eligible to work in the United States and must have a government issued identification to enter state/federal sites. The application will require an résumé, transcript, essay, and an interview. The Board of the Umana Fellowship will determine placements of fellows.