Official photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Gov. Glenn Youngkin: Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin, right, presents Bond Magevney, '23, with an official lapel pin.

Bond Magevney, '23

August 9, 2022

A Virginia Governor’s Fellowship gives senior an up-close look at state government

Bond Magevney, ’23, sat around a conference table in late June with a Virginia government delegation, including the governor, secretary of transportation, and secretary of trade and commerce, discussing the Port of Norfolk with Virginia Port Authority representatives. Specifically, they talked about the past and future performance of one of the busiest ports in the U.S. From their perch in the port’s glass-enclosed tower conference room, they could see massive, computer-operated cranes moving brightly colored containers from international cargo ships to semi-trailer trucks.

This meeting was a highlight of his nine-week Jepson internship as a fellow in the prestigious Virginia Governor’s Fellows Program, said Magevney, who is majoring in leadership studies and political science. Assigned to the Virginia Transportation Secretariat, he said he quickly came to appreciate the breadth and depth of the work of that secretariat, which comprises seven agencies.

“My biggest take-away from my summer internship is how transportation permeates all sections of the government and the economy,” he said. “I attended many cross-agency meetings, as well as meetings with private companies promoting their transportation solutions. I travelled all over the state and even rode on the state plane to Roanoke to attend a meeting about making improvements to Interstate 81.”

Magevney researched transportation issues and edited lengthy agency reports into shorter, more digestible memos for state officials. In the process, the Jacksonville, Florida, native learned about everything from Virginia’s spaceports, sites for launching and receiving spacecraft; to the state’s plans for building infrastructure to support electric vehicles; to rights-of-way laws governing the placement of fiberoptic internet cables in roadways.

“One of my projects involved researching the effectiveness of public-private partnerships for transportation infrastructure projects,” he said. “Another involved tracking wait times at Department of Motor Vehicle branches in support of Gov. Glenn Youngkin’s initiative to reduce average wait times to under 15 minutes.”     

The senior pointed to his experience as a McDowell Institute Student Fellow at the Jepson School of Leadership Studies as good preparation for his summer internship. “The McDowell Fellows Program brings together a politically diverse group of students to discuss current policy and political philosophy issues in an honest, but agreeable, way,” he said.

Several courses also helped him, he said.

“In Dr. George Goethals’ Civil War Leadership and Presidential Leadership courses, we learned what makes some politicians great leaders and how to lead in turbulent times. These classes shaped my view of what successful leadership looks like.

“Dr. Jennifer Bowie’s Constitutional Law and Civil Rights and Civil Liberties courses taught me how to comprehend and analyze court cases and write concise, insightful legal memos. This helped me digest sections of the Virginia statutory code and identify potential legal solutions for transportation issues in memos for the secretary.”