Parliamentary Interns 2016-17

Matthew Blackshaw

Born in Owen Sound, Ontario, Matthew has an interest in democratic reform, justice issues and evidence based policy. He holds a B.A.Sc. (Honours) with a Minor in Mathematics from McMaster University's interdisciplinary Arts and Science Program. As a Studio Y Fellow at the MaRS Discovery District, he led unconventional non-partisan citizen engagement campaigns during municipal and federal elections and co-founded an organization that connected candidates with young voters. An ardent follower of Canadian and global politics, he has researched the experience of citizens on Parliament Hill and worked as a Policy Analyst for the Ontario Ministry of the Environment. As a Parliamentary Intern, he is excited to explore the roles non-partisan actors can fulfill in governance and diplomacy. Beyond politics, Matthew also enjoys the arts and the outdoors, sometimes in combination.

Alec Boudreau

Alec holds a Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership from Renaissance College at the University of New Brunswick. During his studies, he completed an internship in the Kingdom of Tonga in the southern Pacific Ocean. In 2014, Alec was elected President of the Fédération de la jeunesse canadienne-française (FJCF), a national youth-led non-profit organization for minority francophone youth. In this capacity, he has met with leaders from the Government of Canada, La Francophonie and the United Nations and served as a member of the Canadian Delegation to the Sommet de la Francophonie in Dakar, Senegal. Having seen parliamentary life from the outside, Alec is excited by the opportunity to step inside Centre Block to see Canadian politics and government from a new perspective.



Jeanette Carney

Born and raised in Whitehorse, Yukon, Jeanette is a proud Franco-Yukonnaise and a Northerner. After graduating from high school, she migrated south to Ottawa where she worked as a Page in the House of Commons and completed the first two years of her B.A. In 2014, she graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Geography and Sociology from Mount Allison University where she also worked as a volunteer for Oxfam Mount Allison. Jeanette recently received a M.A. in Geography from Memorial University of Newfoundland where she studied Inuit experiences with mining in Nunavik (northern Québec). Her personal and academic experiences of the North continue to inspire an interest in issues facing northern residents and indigenous peoples in Canada. Jeanette looks forward to joining the team of Parliamentary Interns and increasing her understanding of Canadian politics and policy.



Michael Forestell

A lifelong New Brunswicker, Mike’s first job was packaging dulse – the Bay of Fundy’s edible seaweed. He majored in Political Science and Great Books at St. Thomas University where he took part in Model UN conferences and sat for one term on the University Senate. He had memorable summers working as a Parliamentary Guide and at L’Arche International, in Honduras, a community for adults with intellectual disabilities. Most recently, he served an Interpreter at Beaumont-Hamel Newfoundland Memorial and the Canadian National Vimy Memorial in France. Mike spent much of his childhood at his family’s small business in Saint John’s historic City Market, sparking his interest in local industry and tourism. Off-hours, he can be found working through Don Quijote, which he started while studying for a minor in Spanish. 

Astrid Krizus

Born in Montreal and raised in Toronto, Astrid has always been passionate about politics. She received a B.A. (Honours) in Political Studies from Queen's University before pursuing graduate studies, as a SSHRC Canada Graduate Scholar, in the Master of Political Science program at the University of Toronto. Astrid’s research focuses on mechanisms for effective representation in Canadian politics and the intersection of international relations theory and intrastate conflict. Astrid is committed to public service and advocacy, having served in the Ontario Public Service and worked on local and international advocacy initiatives. Whether speaking at a fundraiser for refugees or conducting research for the Ontario Ministry of the Attorney General, Astrid is dedicated to pursuing equity within Canada. She is thrilled to join the Parliamentary Internship Programme and to participate in Canada’s democratic process.


Skeena Lawson

Born in Smithers, British Columbia, Skeena completed a B.A (Honours) in History at Mount Allison University, writing an undergraduate thesis on German cinema in the Third Reich. Her minor in Anthropology furthered an interest in cross-cultural differences in government both in Canada and abroad. While at university, she joined Tintamarre, a bilingual theatre group that writes and performs an original play each year, touring the production in schools throughout the Maritimes. This experience sparked a desire to improve her level of bilingualism, a goal she will continue to pursue as a Parliamentary Intern. In her spare time, Skeena loves to bike, ski, explore new places and do crossword puzzles.

Josh Regnier

Josh was born and raised in Dawson Creek, British Columbia. He completed a Bachelor of Arts in History and Dialogue at Simon Fraser University, where he developed passions for civic and political engagement, international relations and Aboriginal history, policy and self-governance. After a semester in Accra, Ghana, Josh moved to Whitehorse where he led community engagement projects for Yukon College and, as the President of White Ribbon Yukon, advocated for ending violence against women. He moved to Jerusalem in 2014 where he worked for a community development NGO and served as a Project Manager at the British Consulate-General. Josh loves cycle-touring, camping and playing folk music with friends. After five years of adventuring, Josh is enthusiastic to return to Canada and deepen his understanding of the federal political system.

Anna Rotman

A proud Montrealer, Anna spent the last year working in the city’s heritage sector at the Museum of Jewish Montreal. Following high school, she attended Pearson United World College before studying history at Brown University, where she helped develop a community-led food security program and studied grassroots economic and political movements. She is fascinated by the power of organized communities to effect change and is thrilled to get the opportunity to learn how these local efforts are translated into federal policies. An avid skier, Anna spent many winters teaching young children how to snow plow and keep warm on Quebec slopes.

Claire Sieffert

Originally from Victoria, British Columbia, Claire is excited to be joining the Parliamentary Internship Programme. She recently graduated from Simon Fraser University with a B.A. (Honours) in International Studies. While a student, Claire had many eye-opening opportunities to deepen her studies: volunteering at an HIV/AIDS clinic in Uganda with Insight Global Education; working on Canada-Mexico relations at Global Affairs Canada; studying at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra in Barcelona; researching education rights in Jerusalem; and attending the Hague Academy of International Law. Moreover, Claire is committed to creating awareness of the misconceptions around eating disorders, engaging her community in dialogue on this issue as leader of the UnmaskED Project and Post Your Change. In her spare time, she goes on bike rides and tries to cook curry while listening to the radio.


Ryan van den Berg

Born in Val-d'Or, Quebec, Ryan grew up in Ottawa. He holds an M.A. in Educational Studies from the University of British Columbia, where his thesis focused on Canadian civic education and democratic dissent. He obtained a B.A. (Honours) in Canadian Studies from Mount Allison University with minors in French and History. His interest in politics and civic engagement was first sparked during his time as a Parliamentary Guide. He developed these interests further as an intern at Mount Allison's Centre for Canadian Studies and as an editor of I CAN Party, a Canadian politics website. Ryan has other scholarly interests in masculinity, school engagement and democratic theory and, in his free time, enjoys snowboarding, traveling and all things Canadiana.


Parliamentary Internship Programme
131 Queen Street, 4th Floor
Ottawa, ON K1A 0A6
Tel: (613) 995-0764
Fax: (613) 995-5357

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