Marcin Stankevitch has worked under two West Haven mayors and will now be making the journey to Hartford to work in the office of U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal. He said he has learned a lot from his time as an aspiring political operative.
Stankevitch has lived in West Haven since he was three-years-old. He said he attended St. Lawrence School from kindergarten to eighth grade and then went to Notre Dame High School.
“I graduated and then went to the University of New Haven,” said Stankevitch. “[I study] political science. I’m a senior now.”
He said he was in the model United Nations at the university for four semesters; playing the role of a delegate three times and a head delegate once. Stankevitch was also a member of the Mayor’s Advisory Commission.
“We’d plan events like WestFest or we’d host townhall meetings,” said Stankevitch. “Sometimes we’d do a food shuttle for UNH students around West Haven.”
When Stankevitch first got to UNH he had yet to declare his major but, after an American Government class with Professor Chris Haynes was motivated to become a political science major.
“I find politics very interesting,” he said. “But it’s not that I just like politics. We also do a lot of community things.”
In the fall of 2017 Stankevitch started an internship in the O’Brien administration. He said he was there mostly as overseeing operations with WestFest. But, after Nancy Rossi became mayor, was invited to continue working in City Hall’s third floor.
“It was kind of surprising to me because I had worked for the past administration,” said Stankevitch. “I felt like I had to prove myself a little bit. So, the first thing I really did in that office was a Town Hall meeting in January of 2018.”
The student described work in the Rossi administration as interesting and fun but also challenging. He said working in West Haven gave him a good perspective regarding local government.
Taking his experience studying local and international government, Stankevitch said he wanted to split the difference and find opportunities in national politics. He said it was for that reason he applied to an internship in Senator Blumenthal’s Hartford office.
“They are going to start me off doing a lot of case work,” said Stankevitch. “But I’d like to a little bit of everything because in the mayor’s office I did a little bit of everything.”
Stankevitch said he enjoys that type of work because he likes to help people solve problems while using government in a “way that’s good.” He said he’s learned a lot from his time in politics so far.
“There’re a couple important things that I learned,” he said. “Like having a good network and being able to network is very important. Being willing to do menial tasks, even if you think you’re above them, is very important.”
The intern said he has developed a good work ethic and has grown as a person every step of the way. He said he envisions himself staying in Connecticut after he graduates in the spring.