WASHINGTON, PA (July 8, 2019)—Jeffrey Germak ’14 is creating a different kind of community in Washington, D.C.—one that’s distinctly Presidential.
The Washington & Jefferson College (W&J) grad received funding from W&J’s Magellan Project Franklin Internship Award for one of his first experiences in the city: a summer internship at the Export-Import Bank of the United States supporting the Vice Chair and First Vice President. He was able to bring with him the experience he gained from his prior internship in D.C. at the Overseas Private Investment Corporation as well as the knowledge learned through W&J courses.
“I knew through those internship experiences I wanted to move to D.C. after graduation,” Jeffrey said. “I felt really strong connections to the city, and I wanted to find a job that would allow me to support the city somehow.”
Through connections from his internships, Jeffrey found a position with The Economic Club of Washington D.C., a membership-based speaker forum and non-profit that connects business leaders in the region and supports community education in the greater Washington D.C. area.
He joined their staff right after graduation, bringing ideas from W&J to the Economic Club’s education initiatives. With the blessing of former W&J President Tori Haring-Smith, Jeffrey adapted the Magellan Project model into the “Capital Explorer Fund,” which provides financial support to Economic Club scholars completing internships, research projects, or other opportunities for professional growth outside of traditional college classrooms.
“We realized we had this additional funding from the scholarship program, and we were trying to figure out how to support students in different ways. I was fortunate to participate in the Magellan Project,” he said. “I wanted to offer that same opportunity to students here. I’m proud to see that program take off.”
Jeffrey is now a senior manager of executive office and corporate engagement, helping to build the Economic Club’s membership network and implement special projects in the community. He’s also a founding member of W&J’s Washington, D.C. Regional Alumni Club and is the chapter’s membership coordinator.
It’s a far cry from the shy freshman who came to W&J in the fall of 2010, a year younger than his classmates after graduating early from high school. Friendships at the College and a job making milkshakes at DubJay's Diner taught Jeffrey how to build a network.
“I could go on and on about connections I made with staff and my peers through student activities and groups. Just the constant support I had through them gave me a family there even though my family was four hours away. With them, I could work through anything and overcome any challenge,” he said.
Now, he continues to look for opportunities to advance in his career and give back to the community. One thing’s for certain, though: wherever Jeffrey Germak is, you’ll always receive a President’s welcome.
About Washington & Jefferson College
Washington & Jefferson College, located in Washington, Pa., is a selective liberal arts college founded in 1781. Committed to providing each of its students with the highest-quality undergraduate education available, W&J offers a traditional arts and sciences curriculum emphasizing interdisciplinary study and independent study work. For more information about W&J, visit www.washjeff.edu, or call 888-W-AND-JAY.