Four Bloustein Students Chosen as 2024 Eagleton Graduate Fellows

September 29, 2023
The Eagleton Graduate Fellowship Program, a core education program of the Eagleton Institute of Politics, was one of the first activities undertaken by the Institute after it was established in 1956 with a bequest from Florence Peshine Eagleton. Rutgers graduate students, selected for the program from all campus locations, develop an advanced knowledge of government, American politics, policy, and advocacy and build professional skills and networks to apply through their chosen field of study. Eagleton Fellows work toward their graduate degrees without interruption; the one-year fellowships are designed to complement academic study. Throughout the year, Eagleton gives students access to practitioners in state and national politics and government who serve to bridge the gap between the academic training of a graduate student and the everyday challenges of a life in politics and public affairs. All Fellows take a unique seminar course in the fall that provides in-depth knowledge of politics, policy, and government. Each spring, Fellows participate in advanced internships in the New Jersey Legislature, Office of the Governor, state executive agencies/departments, and government offices at the local, county, state, regional, and federal levels. Over 1,200 alumni have graduated from the program since the first class in 1958. Many choose careers in public service, while others apply their sophisticated knowledge of politics and government as advocates and change agents for democracy through public, corporate, and non-profit sectors in a wide variety of fields across the country. This year, four Bloustein School students were chosen for the 2024 cohort.
Nashia-Basit-Eagleton-Fellow
Nashia Basit
Nashia Basit, from Piscataway, New Jersey, is a dual Master of Public Policy/Master of City and Regional Planning candidate with a focus in social policy and community development at the Edward J Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University New Brunswick. She is currently interning with the Office of the Governor/Legislative Affairs division. She is an ANHD/Morgan Stanley Community Development Graduate Fellow and serves on the executive boards of the Women’s Leadership Coalition and the Bloustein Social Justice Committee. Her previous work experiences include the Lionheart Foundation, Environmental Analysis and Communications Group, Alan M Voorhees Center, Center for American Women and Politics, and the Department of Children and Families. She graduated from Rutgers in 2020 with dual degrees in political science and communication with certificates in Women’s Leadership/Social Change and American Politics and Policy and was a Leadership Scholar at the Institute for Women’s Leadership, a Ralph Voorhees Fellow for Public Service, and an Eagleton Undergraduate Associate. Nashia received the Eagleton Alumni Award. She is passionate about expanding opportunities for underserved communities through the implementation of new social safety net programs.
Rita Mirabelli Eagleton Fellow
Rita Mirabelli
Rita Mirabelli is a second-year dual degree master’s student in social work and public policy at the Rutgers School of Social Work and the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy. Prior to this program, Rita completed a master’s degree in school psychology from Columbia University Teachers College, and an undergraduate degree with a psychology and fine art from Loyola University, Maryland. As a council member on the Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital Family Advisory Council for the past ten years, Rita has been an advocate for family centered care and promoted initiatives to enhance maternal and infant health and well-being. She recently completed her first-year internship at the International Rescue Committee, assisting with the resettlement and educational needs of newly arrived refugees and immigrant children and families. Her second-year internship at the New Jersey Department of Community Affairs/Division of Housing and Community Resources in the Office of Homelessness Prevention this fall. Rita hopes to integrate her knowledge and experience in the areas of mental health, child development and public education with the insight into public policy formation and implementation she gains from this program. She received the Harold and Reba Martin Award. In the future she aspires to work in public service to advance progressive state and federal policies, specifically those that promote equity and improve the well-being of women, children, families, and marginalized communities.
Kristin Schlotterbeck Eagleton Fellow
Kristin Schlotterbeck
Kristin Schlotterbeck is a third-year dual degree student studying law at Rutgers Law School – Newark and public affairs and politics at Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy in New Brunswick. She is focused on societal changes that advance equity for women and girls, particularly changes that protect against violence. Kristin has served victims of violence since 2005—beginning by answering crisis lines, facilitating support groups, and providing hospital and campus-based advocacy. Over the past decade, Kristin built and managed a nonprofit violence prevention program, which provided educational programming regarding child sexual abuse and gender-based violence to K-12 students. Additionally, she created and conducted training and technical assistance to service providers from various systems (housing, mental health, child welfare, etc.). During that timeframe, she also worked to improve services across systems by representing victims on countywide multidisciplinary groups including the Commercial Sexual Exploitation of Children committee, Sexual Assault Response Team, and Student Threat Assessment Team. In 2018, Kristin became interested in how communication campaigns can be used to create pro-social behavior change and, adding to her bachelor’s degrees in English and psychology, she earned a master’s degree in strategic communications from the University of Oregon. She is currently focused on how public and private systems can become more accessible, equitable, and traumainformed. Most recently, she worked to ensure people in poverty have equal access to justice as an intern with New York Legal Assistance Group, and as a Deborah T. Poritz Fellow with Essex-Newark Legal Services. Someday, she hopes to combine her background in communications, public policy, and the law to advance legislative changes that uplift under-resourced communities. Kristin is honored to accept the Eagleton Fellowship Program’s Governor’s Executive Award and looks forward to building her political acumen.
Mayrose Wegmann Eagleton Fellow
Mayrose Wegman
Iowa native Mayrose Wegmann is pursuing a master’s degree in public affairs and politics at the Rutgers-New Brunswick Edward J. Bloustein School for Planning and Public Policy. Mayrose is a veteran campaign strategist and organizer in the American Labor Movement. Mayrose grew up in rural poverty with an incarcerated father, a single mother, and seven brothers and sisters. She benefited from social safety-net programs including food stamps, WIC, heating assistance, housing assistance, Medicaid, free school lunch, and Pell Grants. Her personal experience showed her that public programs can create the opportunity to overcome poverty. Mayrose attended the University of Iowa where she earned a bachelor’s degree in political science focused on public policy and political communication. While at the University of Iowa, she served as vice president of the student body and president of the student senate. In these leadership roles, she became an advocate for college affordability where she contributed for CNN, NPR, USA Today, Washington Post, and U.S. News and World Report. Mayrose began her public service and politics career as an intern for U.S. Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) and worked on the re-election campaigns for Senator Harkin and Governor Tom Vilsack (D-IA). Mayrose moved to Washington D.C.in 2004 to work at the National Education association (NEA), the nation’s largest labor union. In 2016, Mayrose served as a senior advisor to the Hillary Clinton for President campaign. In 2018, Mayrose moved to New Jersey where she currently serves as the Northwest Region Director for the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA). Mayrose is a member of the New Leaders Council/New Jersey Fellows Program and currently serves as statewide chapter director. Mayrose holds certificates from Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Rutgers School of Management and Labor Relations, and the Midwest Academy. She received the Harold and Reba Martin Award. Mayrose lives in Montclair with her partner Conrad. In her spare time, Mayrose enjoys yoga, cooking, and exploring the world in search for the best beach. More information on the program can be found at eagleton.rutgers.edu/grad-fellowships

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