Two second year master’s students, Joe Mancina (MPP ‘24) and Gerardo Méndez Gutiérrez (MPP’24), have been selected from a competitive pool of applicants for the Ford School’s prestigious 2024 Riecker Fellowship. They will spend the winter semester in Washington, DC, on assignment with a member of the Michigan delegation.
The fellows’ specific assignments will be based on the current priorities of members’ offices. Past assignments have included working on investigations and oversight of FEMA grant programs, the National Flood Insurance Program, the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity, government shutdown, and the CARES Act.
Méndez Gutiérrez will be supporting Representative Dan Kildee (MI-8th District).
“I look forward to leveraging the knowledge and skills that I have learned at the Ford School in such a high-stakes and fast-paced environment. The chance to join Congressman Dan Kildee’s team represents a unique opportunity for me to learn about the politics behind the policymaking process, as well as the interconnection between local and national issues,” Méndez Gutiérrez said.
Mancina will be working with U.S. Senator Gary Peters’ (D-MI) Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee.
“The Riecker Fellowship is an incredible opportunity to get direct legislative experience that touches a variety of important and interesting policy areas, and it's a privilege to work in a place like the U.S. Senate,” Mancina said. “Before coming to Ford, I spent three years at the State Budget Office of Michigan, and over the summer, I was an intern with the U.S. Government Accountability Office. In both roles, I was working on teams that provided non-partisan information and recommendations to policymakers. I’m looking forward to the opportunity to work on the other side of things, getting more directly involved in the drafting and passage of legislation, and being able to bring my prior government experience, especially at the state level, to the position.”
About the Riecker Michigan Delegation Fellowship
Named for Margaret (Ranny) Riecker (HLLD '05), a longtime friend and generous benefactor of the Ford School, the Riecker Michigan Delegation Fellowship sends competitively selected continuing graduate students to Washington, DC to complete a six-month assignment with a senator or representative from the state of Michigan. Fellows also receive a monthly stipend to cover expenses during their time on the Hill; leadership coaching; a travel grant to cover relocation expenses to DC; in-state tuition support for the semester immediately following the DC assignment; and a year of health care insurance.