Internship Spotlight: Julia Westwick at TPPF

July 15, 2019

My name is Julia Westwick, and I am the chapter chairman of Young Conservatives of Texas (YCT) at Trinity University. A rising junior studying Economics and Public Policy, I am from Anchorage, Alaska, but am thankful to reside in the greatest state in the Union. When I’m not studying or working on YCT related-activities, I am reading political philosophy or singing. 

This summer, I am a policy intern at the Texas Public Policy Foundation (TPPF), a free-market think tank based in Austin, Texas that is highly esteemed for its work promoting liberty in Texas and across the nation. As an intern in the K-12 branch of the Center for Innovation in Education (CIE), the work I facilitate is dedicated to increasing options and choice for students and families as well as making the public school system more efficient and effective. 

In my internship, I assist in researching potential policies. Recently, I finished compiling summaries of how each of the fifty states funds its public schools, focusing specifically on each state’s reliance on property tax to fund education. Using this research, I will soon have a finished product explaining the possible avenues Texas could take to decrease, or entirely eliminate, school property tax.

During my time at TPPF, I have gained substantial knowledge about Texas public school finance and the various aspects of school choice. Being surrounded by such great minds is not only educational but inspires me to continue fostering conservative principles in my YCT chapter, on my campus, and in my future career in public policy. 

I could not have gotten this internship without the support I received from YCT. Known for churning out intelligent, driven members of the conservative movement, YCT has a strong reputation throughout the state. Organizations like TPPF know they can rely on YCT to send exceptional interns. Throughout my two years involved with YCT, I have grown both intellectually and philosophically from our weekly discussions and from senior members who recommended specific books and philosophers to read. Additionally, YCT alum have mentored me and been an invaluable source of wisdom as I pursue a career in the movement. I was heavily involved in block walking for the Chip Roy for Congress campaign with my chapter of YCT, whose crucial contribution in Congressman Roy’s victory is not lost on the conservative movement. 

Without YCT, I would not have the sound philosophical backing, career advice, or political experience that has engendered my internship at TPPF. YCT has shaped my college career and will no doubt have great effect on my post-grad career. I intend to pursue a career that advances school choice, and I thank YCT for helping me discover my passion and talents  and getting me closer to my goals.