My time on the campaign trail has proved an invaluable experience for my professional development and character building. The skills learned on a campaign are unique to any other job, particularly due to the intensity of the learning curve. The pace is unparalleled, and the variety of intellect required to run a successful campaign outnumbers any other job I have had. There must be expertise in math, statistics, history, policy, politics, current events, management, and communications. All of these fields must be represented equally, except maybe math, in order to run a winning campaign. With that being said, the amount of math and science at the heart of every campaign is intriguing. It is the culmination of all of the aforementioned fields that will result in a win. The statistics fuel the planning of precincts, voter registration, and scripts, because each must cater to the specified targeted audience and that group’s historical political voting records. Also, the mere mapping of the precincts and dividing of the district is a grueling and tedious task in itself.
I think that for a prospective employer, nothing demonstrates the work ethic of a potential employee like phone banking and precinct walking. I would argue precinct walking is even more character revealing than phone banking, due to the physical nature of it, but cold calling is a close second. Such repetitive and time consuming tasks easily weed out those who are not hard-working and competitive, and are opportunities any young professional should take advantage of.
– Jessica Gibson, Star Fellow Fall 2012