Civil Liberties Internship Testimonials

My internship at the Rutherford Institute exposed me to some of the important intricacies of a law advocacy group: First, a sincere desire to fight for and protect the Civil Liberties of all individuals, no matter their message. The preservation of our most basic rights stood tall during my time at TRI. Intimate interaction with potential clients highlighted the heightened necessity for protection against the government’s infringement of our constitutional rights. No matter whether a potential case is at the core or periphery of civil liberties infringement, TRI made it our prerogative to take the best legal action. Second, TRI’s commitment to educate the public is unparalleled. An uneducated electorate is nothing more than sheep following the shepherd. During my time at TRI, it was our belief that education­­ is imperative. Not only did I educate myself through in-depth research, but I was able to aid in educating others, which was the highlight of my internship. – Evan Tucker, UVA

My time interning at The Rutherford Institute this summer has been one of the most worthwhile experiences of my life. I have learned so much about law, civil liberties, the constitution, and even myself. Interning here has solidified my interest in pursuing a career in the law field, and has opened my eyes to so much injustice in the world that I cannot ignore. I genuinely enjoyed talking to potential clients and doing my best to help them, and it is something I wish to continue doing in my career. TRI has helped me to grow and expand my skillset, as well as helped me to understand my weaknesses so that I can continue working to improve myself as a person. The research project that I was assigned, on drones and surveillance, was an absolute perfect fit for me, and doing the research did not even feel like work. I am so thankful for the opportunities John and Nisha Whitehead gave me, even resulting in my work getting published in the near future. They are some of the most genuinely nice people I have had the pleasure of meeting, and I have the utmost respect for them and their desire to protect people’s civil liberties. – Shane Haislip, UVA

Thank you so much for this experience--it truly has been an eye-opening, wild ride! I have discovered more about myself and my values this summer than I have discovered in my past three years at UVA. Please know that I am incredibly thankful for the opportunities you have provided me. You have been the most knowledgable, helpful, and compassionate supervisors. In actuality, I could not have asked for a better internship experience. — Jamie Thompson, UVA

 My internship here at The Rutherford Institute has taught me so much more than I expected and has helped me gain experience working in a professional environment. Not only are the people friendly, but you can tell that they are knowledgeable and passionate about the work they do. The Rutherford Institute has allowed me to gain a broader understanding of the law and how important it is to help protect people’s civil liberties. Hopefully I can work for a place like this after I graduate from The University of Virginia! — Chrissostomos Batistatos
“My internship with The Rutherford Institute was a real eye-opener on how our cherished liberties are being attacked on all fronts. From the domestic use of drones to students’ rights abuses, I got to work on many on-going cases with Rutherford's dedicated staff and attorneys. I also received the opportunity to do fascinating research on a diverse variety of topics. Every day, I was reminded that our Constitution is not self-enforcing and, as Thomas Jefferson correctly noted, the price of liberty is eternal vigilance. I highly recommend this internship for anyone politically engaged who wants to work in keeping our society free.”—Aaron Tao

 “Thank you for an excellent summer!  The issues presented in this internship are where the rubber hits the pavement - where opinions of principle are formed, and a stance taken, with regards to the rights of individuals.  Because of my exposure to opposing viewpoints during this internship, I am now convinced of the truth of John Milton's assertion – ‘Let [Truth] and Falshood grapple; who ever knew Truth put to the worse, in a free and open encounter.  Her confuting is the best and surest suppressing.’  We need to let opinions meet in a constructive open encounter more often.  Respect and Reason are the keys to constructive encounters in the search for truth.  The world could only be bettered if all would follow Rutherford's motto to ‘Speak the Truth to power,’ in the same constructive way in which the Rutherford Institute does so.”—Jared Clark
“I am grateful that I was provided with the opportunity to develop my ideas and to contribute to The Rutherford Institute’s causes. Most of all, I am grateful for having worked with so many individuals of great quality and character. I hope that you continue to find fulfillment in the tremendous good that has come from your courage and perseverance. Thank you once again for letting me be a part of it.”—Joseph M. Kasl
“This summer was a dream come true for me. I loved every assignment and every hour at The Rutherford Institute. I sincerely believe this program is unmatchable. My eyes were opened to a new way of thinking. I’ve learned to see the big picture, to recognize injustices and to not assume before exploring something on my own. I really cannot say thank you enough. You have helped shape me into a more compassionate, persuasive and educated person. Should The Rutherford Institute ever need my help, I am able and willing to do all I can.”—Andrea Worden

I just want to thank you for your kindness this summer and for the wonderful opportunity to be a part of TRI. I really enjoyed my experience, and it was very rewarding—my horizons were definitely broadened, and I learned to look at a lot of issues in a different light. I have tremendous respect for the battle you all fight there! Also, it is clear to me how much you all care about the people who work there, even just for the summer. That really adds to the experience. I’ll never forget my summer at TRI.—Matthew Foote
I am ever grateful for the experience I had at The Rutherford Institute this summer. I cannot tell you how my life has changed and taken a new meaning. The work I completed and cases I read have really increased my awareness of my surroundings and have given me a passion to help others. I hold you as a great role model and hope one day to become as fulfilled in life as you seem. I truly do have faith and I know now that it isn’t about money but about helping people. I also know you have to keep the lights on…so here is a little contribution. It isn’t much, but I hope it will cover the cost of my summer.—Warren Campbell
“From start to finish, my experience at The Rutherford Institute has been nothing short of fantastic. There is nothing so satisfying as succeeding against those who would restrict our civil liberties. Though often taken for granted, the liberties are the foundation of our basic freedoms. I thoroughly enjoyed my time at The Rutherford Institute and am ecstatic to find an organization so devoted to preserving our rights.”—Jason Rogers

 “I was an intern for the Rutherford Institute in the summer of 2003.  I have often thought about The Rutherford Institute since.  I often think that it really is possible to argue that so many things I have done in my life, and therefore the things people call “successes,” had their roots in my Rutherford Institute experience, and that remains true on a going-forward basis as well. It seems as though I ought to start with a little “giving back.” —Jennifer Spreng  
“Thank you again for the internship opportunity that you provided me at TRI.  I learned more that summer than any other summer of my life.  The internship program that you put together was excellent.  It challenged me and impacted the way I view myself, others, our country, and Christianity.  I am a better person because of this experience.  Keep up the good fight for freedom, liberty, and justice.”— David Scott