I am very honored to serve as the Teresa L. Olson Scholar at the Mackinac Center this summer. Having now accepted three internships with the Center, I am continually impressed by the quality of my colleagues and the keen minds which they bring to bear on policy questions in Michigan.

My specific projects as an intern have ranged from a study of privatization by Michigan public school districts to an analysis of criminal intent requirements under Michigan law. Throughout my internships, numerous conversations and lectures have helped me to better understand a large array of political, economic and even cultural issues. As a true think tank, the Mackinac Center provides information in order to stimulate healthy discussion and debate, including amongst its own staff. Exciting and valuable conversations occur around the lunch table just as much as in the conference room.

As a graduate of Hillsdale College, I had already grown to appreciate free-market and limited-government ideas prior to my internships, but the Mackinac Center has given me the chance to apply those ideas practically. While internships in any field, no doubt, include some amount of mundane work, I have enjoyed the chance to apply my mind to more complex tasks as well, including published writing. My research and writing experiences, particularly those gained this summer with the Mackinac Center Legal Foundation, will serve me well this fall when I will enroll at Harvard Law School. After receiving my law degree, I plan to continue serving as an advocate for liberty both in the United States and abroad.

I am deeply grateful for the generosity of the Olson family and all of the members and friends who make our work possible. Please know that your support makes a real and important difference in the continuing struggle for free-market policies in Michigan.

(Editor’s note: Kollmeyer is the first recipient of the Teresa L. Olson Scholarship, which was established by founding board member Joe Olson in memory of his late wife. The endowment funds one intern annually from Hillsdale College who shows an aptitude in economics, political economy and the insurance and financial services industry. Kollmeyer is one of just 34 people — out of 112,000 nationwide — to get a perfect score on the Law School Admissions Test last year.)