Internship brings countries together

After four years of behind-the-scenes work, Wetaskiwin MP Blaine Calkins has announced the launch of a program that improves

After four years of behind-the-scenes work, Wetaskiwin MP Blaine Calkins has announced the launch of a program that improves Canada’s relationship with Poland.

The Canada-Poland Youth Internship Program (CPYIP) is the first bilateral internship agreement the Canadian government has made, explained Calkins.

“Canadian Parliament itself has no mechanism in which to engage other parliaments in an intern program.”

Until now.

“It’s something I kind of do on the side,” said Calkins.

The program hits close to home for Calkins whose wife is a Polish immigrant. There are two interns from Poland who have been able to take advantage of the program since September. They work in the House of Commons assisting MPs and senators or other tasks. There is also an opportunity to conduct research projects. “It’s an educational work experience setting.”

Their internship is for three months and gives them first-hand experience in Canadian politics and Calkins believes there are several benefits to this program.

“Obviously any ties that we have that can be strengthened and built upon in any country are good and I see Poland as a real opportunity,” he said.

“Twenty years after the fall of communism there, Poland still remains a very strong democracy with good principles and good economic growth.”

He suggested shale gas deposits, that Canadian companies are helping the country explore, might also be a benefit. “We’ll help them with their energy independence and it’s going to help, obviously, Canadian companies’ jobs.”

Canadian interns do travel to different parts of the world, but Calkins said there is no reciprocal exchange between governments except with CPYIP.

The not-for-profit Canada-Poland Youth Internship Society oversees the applications and interns with travel costs. Applicants from Poland have need to meet several criteria before being accepted and must be fluent in either English or French. If accepted, the society pays for their flights and accommodation while in Canada.

The interns work in MPs and senators offices where needed or conducting research projects. “It’s an educational work experience setting,” Calkins said.

Some tasks may be more mundane than others but it also gives them a chance to network with others. There are two Canadian interns who are scheduled to travel to Poland in the spring of 2013.

Just Posted

Environment Minister clarifies misconceptions in Bighorn proposal

Minister Shannon Phillips speaks to concerns around the Bighorn Country

Three Ponoka men and one youth charged in assault case

Police obtained a search warrant and located drugs and sawed-off shot gun

Snowfall adds some delay to morning commute

The QE2 and area road conditions in central Alberta were partly snow covered

New market opens in downtown Ponoka

Makkinga Market had a soft opening showcasing many of the different foods in store

Ponoka council challenged on payments on new building

Resident continues worries the town is paying over $94,000 per month on something it may never own

Trudeau says politicians shouldn’t prey on Canadians’ fears

The Prime Minister was speaking at a townhall in Ontario

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Canada’s arrest of Huawei exec an act of ‘backstabbing,’ Chinese ambassador says

China has called Canada’s arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou ‘politically motivated’

In limbo: Leftover embryos challenge clinics, couples

Some are outright abandoned by people who quit paying storage fees and other couples struggle with tough decisions

Netflix rejects request to remove Lac-Megantic images from ‘Bird Box’

At least two shows on Netflix’s Canadian platform briefly use actual footage of the 2013 tragedy

Teen vaping is an epidemic: US government

E-cigarettes are now the top high-risk substance used by teenagers, outpacing cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana

Most Read