Summer in D.C. at the Department of Justice

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Happy August to all you Blue Devils out there who are soaking up these final few weeks of summer!  I’m excited to be able to share with you all some of my experience interning in D.C. over the last nine weeks.  My name is Andrea Wright and I am a rising senior pursuing a major in Political Science with a minor in History and a Markets and Management certificate.

Beginning in early June, I had the opportunity to intern for the Department of Justice under the Consumer Protection Branch (CPB).  In a national effort to protect the safety and economic security of the American consumer, the CPB works with various regulatory and law enforcement agencies such as the FDA, the FTC, and the FBI among others to investigate and prosecute both criminal and civil violations of the law.  The CPB specializes in cases dealing with pharmaceuticals and medical devices, deceptive trade practices, telemarketing schemes, food and dietary supplements, consumer product safety, and odometer fraud.

As a student considering applying to law school, I chose to intern at the CPB to gain firsthand insight into the daily life and work of a federal attorney, given my interest in public service.   As a student also interested in business, I found this opportunity to be a particularly fascinating intersection between marketing and regulation.

My internship provided me with the opportunity to work directly with lead attorneys on some of the largest, most shocking corporate cases under federal investigation or undergoing trial.  Throughout the program, I contributed to four main cases: an international telemarketing and extortion scheme, a medical device misbranding case, a takedown of dangerous narcotic prescription/distribution, and a food safety issue linked to a fatal disease outbreak.  Though I cannot detail the specifics of these cases, I can absolutely attest to the immense development in my analytical and communicative skills that my experience facilitated. 

As a CPB intern, I researched regulations, testing requirements, witness backgrounds and company information; I analyzed lengthy trial transcripts for critical exhibit information, counsels’ arguments, and witness’ testimonials for examination; I reviewed evidence in the form of e-mails and audio recordings.  I also had the opportunity to compose official correspondence letters with U.S. consumers, evaluating the nature of their complaints and connecting them with the appropriate government agencies.

TLDR; For MMS students who may or may not be considering law school, alike, the Consumer Protection Branch provides exposure to several key business-related areas such as marketing, regulation, customer affairs, and business ethics.  I feel fortunate to have worked with some of our nation’s friendliest and brightest legal minds in protecting the American consumer.    

This coming fall, I will continue my marketing education by taking a class on Marketing Across Borders, Cultures, and Demographics (MMS 272).  I also intend on looking into classes involving business ethics for the spring semester.  I look forward to kick starting my senior year as I begin to explore my next, post-grad phase.  Catch you all on campus!

 

Andrea Wright is a Public Policy major, History Minor, and Markets and Management Studies Certificate student. Markets and Management Studies will be featuring students' summer experiences all summer. Check in weekly or follow us on Facebook to read more about what our students are doing this summer.