Thanks to the inspiration and dedication of Alf Hales, the Parliamentary Internship Programme has offered more than 500 young Canadians the experience of a lifetime. The significant contributions of former interns to Canada and the international community through academia, public service, and industry are a lasting testament to important role the PIP plays in developing the potential of promising young Canadians.
Somaya Amiri (Maple Ridge, BC)
BA Political Science, Minor in French, McGill University
Born and raised in Afghanistan and moved to the beautiful British Columbia at the age of 14, Somaya recently completed a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Political Science with a minor in French at McGill University. She has experience working in the not-for-profit, private, and public policy institutions across Canada. She has a background in qualitative research analysis on migration policies and how various political systems shape the lives of marginalized communities. To further enhance her knowledge about more saturated migration systems, she traveled to France for a year studying at Science Po Strasbourg and working with the municipal government. When she is not busy mobilizing and volunteering with her peers in the community, she likes to refine her swimming and cooking skills.
Amélie Cossette (Shawinigan, QC)
BSocSc Conflict Studies and Human Rights, University of Ottawa
Amélie recently earned an honours bachelor’s degree in Conflict Studies and Human Rights from the University of Ottawa. A native of Shawinigan, Amélie decided to head to Italy after high school for a 10‑month cultural exchange. This trip sparked her passion for politics, international relations and human rights. At university, this passion led Amélie to take part in the Model United Nations event in New York, a student exchange program with Sciences Po Lyon in France and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program. She took an interest in the political debate surrounding the Safe Third Country Agreement and worked as a research assistant to one of her professors. Amélie also participated in the House of Commons Page Program and the Daughters of the Vote forum. These experiences shaped Amélie’s character and helped make her into the passionate, determined person she is today.
Gabrielle Feldmann (Waterloo, ON)
BSocSc Public Administration and Political Science, University of Ottawa
Originally from Waterloo, Ontario, Gabrielle holds an Honours Bachelor of Social Sciences in Political Science and Public Administration from the University of Ottawa. She is an aspiring policy wonk with a passion for social and economic policy, and has held positions at Women and Gender Equality Canada, Treasury Board of Canada Secretariat, the Public Policy Forum, and Public Services and Procurement Canada. An avid volunteer, Gabrielle is a leader for a local Girl Guides unit, and has previously volunteered as Chair of the University of Ottawa Public Administration Committee and with various non-profits and Members of Parliament. In her spare time, she can be found immersing herself in nature or in a good book.
Valere Gaspard (Leamington, ON)
BA Political Science and Philosophy, Western University
Valere Gaspard is a researcher and practitioner. A member of the Elections Canada Media Relations and Issues Management team for three years, Valere’s research interests include election law, federalism, Canadian politics, and ethics. While completing his Honours Specialization in Political Science and Major in Philosophy at Western University, Valere served as Speaker of the Social Science Student’s Council, co-founded Girl Up Western, and researched at the Leadership and Democracy Lab. Valere’s most recently published policy paper discusses the importance of MPs being physically present in the House of Commons and his upcoming publications focus on third parties in the pre-election period. Originally from Leamington, Ontario, Valere has an appreciation for the outdoors. During his spare time Valere cycles, paddle-boards, and explores the natural areas around the capital. He looks forward to seeing federalism in practice while contributing to the Parliamentary Internship Program!
Olga Goulet Doyon (Saint-Joseph-de-Beauce, QC)
BA Sciences politiques, Université Laval
MA Political Science, University of Toronto
Olga holds a master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Toronto. Her research focuses on the role of women in politics and Indigenous peoples in Canada. Olga has considerable experience in parliamentary and governmental institutions, including the G7 Summit in Charlevoix and the National Assembly of Quebec. These jobs gave her a solid understanding of the mechanics of Canadian politics. Olga’s terms of study in Brussels, the United Kingdom, Spain and Mexico and her involvement as a delegate at and organizer of diplomatic simulation events demonstrate her interest in international affairs and foreign languages. Olga has long been involved in her community, including by organizing events to benefit non-profit organizations and representing political science students at the University of Toronto’s Graduate Students’ Union.
Hanna Hughes (Prince George, BC)
BA Political Science and International Studies, University of Northern British Columbia
Hanna was born in Hunan, China before being adopted and brought to Canada at an early age. In May 2020, she graduated from the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC) with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and International Studies. While at UNBC, Hanna participated in the International Studies Students Association as Treasurer, worked as a Teaching Assistant for the first and second year Japanese courses, performed duties as a Special Ballot Coordinator and Revising Agent for Elections Canada, and researched the effects of constitutional hardball on democracy. Hanna’s leisure time consists of improving her Japanese language skills, playing online games with her friends, and trying out new recipes.
Daniel Lukac (Dawson Creek, BC)
BA Political Science, University of Northern British Columbia
Certificate in Cultural Planning, University of British Columbia Extended Learning
MA Political Science, Queen’s University
Daniel holds a BA in Political Science from UNBC and an MA from Queen’s University. During his MA, Daniel specialized in Political and Legal Thought, and issues in political philosophy continue to motivate and inform his engagement with politics. Daniel is particularly interested in questions of political obligation; distributive justice; cosmopolitanism and nationalism; and group rights. Outside of academia, Daniel spent two years working in municipal government. In addition to an understanding of the major issues confronting Canadian municipalities today, this provided Daniel with experience in project management and policy/legislative development. In his personal life, Daniel values change and contrast, and believes that a diversity of life experiences (he recently spent a year living off-grid, for instance) is also an important means of developing one’s distinct political voice. Daniel loves to explore, dissect, and ultimately understand competing perspectives and values, and is especially looking forward to learning about and contributing to Canadian politics in a non-partisan capacity through the PIP.
Samuel Maclennan (Calgary, AB)
BSc Life Sciences and Religious Studies, Queen’s University
MA Religious Studies, Queen’s University
Born and raised in Calgary, Sam holds a Bachelor of Science in Life Sciences and Religious Studies and a Master of Arts in Religious Studies from Queen’s University. He is particularly interested in the intersections of religious and medical discourses, exploring in his Master’s research essay the historical entwining of hysteria, the psychiatric concept, with the Catholic mystical phenomenon of stigmata. During his time at Queen’s University, Sam worked and volunteered in various capacities, including as the Head Gael of Arts and Science Orientation Week 2018, a shift leader at the Undergraduate and Graduate Peer Support Centres, and a campus tour guide. Over the summer, he worked as a research assistant for Dr. Amarnath Amarasingam on topics ranging from burgeoning far-right terrorist movements to ISIS. In his free time, he enjoys a rousing game of Spikeball and reading a good book.
Tristan Masson (Winnipeg, MB)
BA Political Science, Minor Sustainability Studies, Concordia University
MPhil International Relations and Politics, Cambridge University
Tristan was born in Winnipeg and moved to Montreal at the start of high school. He holds a BA in Political Science (Honours) and Sustainability Studies (Minor) from Concordia University, and an MPhil in International Relations from Cambridge University, where he was a Cambridge Trust and Tom Charlton Scholar. Tristan is interested in the political economy of climate change, the digital revolution and wealth inequality. He has researched election advertisement regulation in Canada, Canadian federalism, Québec’s paradiplomacy, the sustainable development of the building sector, and effects and regulation of social media. Tristan wrote his undergraduate thesis on UNFCCC negotiations, and his graduate thesis on digital money. Beyond academics, Tristan has worked with local non-profits dedicated to sustainability, served as a Big Brother mentor, and co-hosted a podcast called The Worlds We Want which celebrates the stories of people and projects making positive contributions to address the climate crisis.
Christelle Tessono (Montréal, QC)
BA Political Science, Minor in History, McGill University
Christelle was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina, by her Haitians parents before making Montreal her home when she was 8 years old. She recently graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science. During her time at McGill, she served as President of the Black Students’ Network and as the Pedagogy & Development Coordinator for the Office of the Dean of Students’ equity education program. These enriching experiences allowed her to further develop her interest in policymaking and community-building. Additionally, this summer Christelle interned at the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation’s (CBC) Montreal radio station as part of the CBC Radio Peter Gzowski Internship Program. In her spare time, Christelle enjoys listening to podcasts, discovering new artists and going on long walks with friends.