We're working on our new website. Share us your thoughts and ideas

Student to join politics after graduating Rutgers

<p>Brianna Battle hopes to work with Senator Elizabeth Warren (D.-Ma.) after graduating from Rutgers.</p>

Brianna Battle hopes to work with Senator Elizabeth Warren (D.-Ma.) after graduating from Rutgers.


For one Rutgers graduate, a step out of New Brunswick means a step onto Capitol Hill.

Graduating senior Brianna Battle will move to Washington, D.C. as part of the Star Fellowship Program offered by Running Start, a non-profit organization that seeks to bring young women into politics.

The Star Fellow will serve with a U.S. senator or congresswoman of her choice, and Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), a Rutgers alumna herself, has made it onto Battle’s shortlist.

“She has never been a recipient of a Star Fellow, but I am trying to get in touch with her office to see if she would like to have me as an intern for this upcoming fall semester,” Battle said with a small laugh.

The School of Arts and Sciences senior is also looking into the office of Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y.).

Battle did not always want to get involved in politics, but her role as vice president of the Rutgers University Student Assembly — and the platform it offered her — got her hooked.

“In my sophomore year, I was introduced to RUSA, and from then on, my passion for politics and passion for community service and passion to serve people on a variety of issues — differing from pay equity things in the state legislature to things right here in the rutgers community — has been booming,” she said.

But her road to the student assembly did not face total support.

“I was told by an older member of RUSA that I shouldn't run for a senate position the year that I did,” Battle said. “If I did not run for that position — regardless of what he said — I would not be here, today, about to move to Washington.”

This summer, Battle will work as a staffer for the Mandela Fellowship spearheaded by President Barack Obama while simultaneously drafting a report on diversity and inclusion at Rutgers for University President Robert L. Barchi.

What comes after the fall for Battle is still undecided. She sees three paths in before her: law school, a fulltime position in Washington or a run for public office.

To those wanting to get involved with state affairs, Battle said naysayers ought to be ignored.

“If you have a gut feeling, or if you know that you're capable of doing something do not let external forces — or even yourself sometimes — hold you back from what you know you can do,” she said.


Nikita Biryukov is a School of Arts and Sciences junior majoring in journalism and media studies. He is an associate news editor for The Daily Targum. Follow him on Twitter @nikitabiryukov_ for more.


Comments powered by Disqus

Please note All comments are eligible for publication in The Daily Targum.

Support Independent Student Journalism

Your donation helps support independent student journalists of all backgrounds research and cover issues that are important to the entire Rutgers community. All donations are tax deductible.