Steven Xie is a rising senior at Georgetown University who is pursuing a double major in Government and Economics. This summer, he is interning at the US Forest Service.
What major projects are you working on in your internship? What responsibilities are you most excited about and why?
As an intern working with a tax specialist within the USDA Forest Service, my assignments are centered on forestry-related tax issues. So far I have worked on two presentations, one centered around helping individuals calculate their basis for federal estate tax calculations and one focusing on areas of the tax code which affect forest landowners and which would benefit from reform and reevaluation. I also work to update the National Timber Tax website, which provides guidance and resources for filing forestry-related taxes. In terms of my responsibilities, it is working on and refining these taxpayer resources which excites me the most as they provide a direct benefit to the public.
When did you realize you wanted to explore public service?
My involvement with my university’s Asian American Student Association was what opened my eyes to public service. The community I grew up in was dominated by Asian Americans, so leaving an environment in which I was sheltered from issues of discrimination and underrepresentation and transitioning into the ‘real world’ made me more aware of the urgent need for activism and mobilization within our community. To me, public service is one pathway in which I can contribute to and advocate on behalf of our community.
What are your plans/ goals after this internship? Are there any goals you want to accomplish this summer?
After this internship I plan to take the LSAT and then seek employment. Afterwards I then intend to pursue a JD. Those are the most tangible plans I have made so far, as I am still deciding which field of law I am most interested in studying. This summer my main goals include studying for the LSAT and preparing myself well, as well as expanding my network in DC.
What are you looking forward to in DC / where your internship is located?
I am looking forward to meeting new people with similar interests and exploring DC’s restaurant scene in my free time this summer.
What do you do for fun?
In my free time I like to listen to music of all genres, listening to podcasts and audiobooks, and finding new restaurants and cuisines to try. I also spend a lot of my free time exercising, whether that be running, lifting weights, or playing basketball.
What is something that most people would not know about you?
When I was young, my sister and I were at a ski resort and I was being a general pest by throwing snowballs at her. When she turned around to scold me the ski pole strapped to her wrist connected with my face and knocked me out cold – the scar on my nose is still faintly visible. Thankfully, there were no hard feelings and my sister and I are still very close to one another!
Meet all of our CAPAL Scholars & Interns here.
Posted by Nattacha Munakata
Nattacha Munakata is currently a rising sophomore at George Mason University, studying Community Health with a concentration in Clinical Science (Pre-med). On campus, she is Peer Health Advisor, working to raise awareness and educate students on health issues. She is also involved in TEDxGMU and Thai Student Association. Outside, she likes to volunteer for local organizations and events, such as the DC Sakura matsuri and her local FIRST robotics team. During her free time, she likes to watch Netflix dramas and explore new music.