Alumni SpotlightApril 2019School of Diplomacy News

School of Diplomacy Alumnus Enters Race for North Haledon NJ Borough Council

Mariah McCloskey
Managing Editor

Many students feel frustrated by the current political climate. On both a national and local level there are people who are unable to get their point across and connect with their constituents. However, an up and coming politician wants to help impact the next generation of leaders.

If you are in New Jersey this summer and in need of an internship, or you just want to help the local community, Nicholas Zeitlinger an ‘18 School of Diplomacy and International Relations alumnus is running for Borough Council in North Haledon, NJ. He says that for those students who are inspired by the coming 2020 election, “here is a chance to get in on the ground level in 2019 and elect a young candidate who represents a rising youthful voice in local politics.”

As a former student at Seton Hall, Zeitlinger understands the need for acquiring an internship while still in school. He wants to give students the opportunity to effect grassroots change in a way that most internships do not supply. As a Seton Hall alumnus, he is well aware of the difficulties and challenges facing most students at SHU.

His campaign is attempting to help students gain the experience they need when going out into the job market. This internship is “the perfect opportunity for politically active students to get hands-on community campaign building experience without being told to fetch coffee or hear their well thought ideas downplayed and dismissed.”

Students who want to work on policy research, different forms of design, and who want to better understand the strategizing that goes into a successful grassroots election are encouraged to reach out. Diplomacy student or not, anyone can gain from working on the grassroots level of a campaign.

Zeitlinger is not only driven to help the community, but also wants to help students gain tangible skills to add to their resume. While a part of his team, students will work closely with the campaign manager on drafting policy briefs and memos, conducting research on previous and current borough issues, campaign tactics, and other policy-related tasks.

If you are not a policy person, there are other aspects of his campaign you can sink your teeth into. There is the opportunity for students to develop digital media initiatives to reach voters through their phones. Interns can even post on blogs, forums, and social networks.

Reaching back out to the community and helping the school that helped him, Zeitlinger wants to leave a lasting impact. “I know it’s the experiences I’ve taken from community organizing at Seton Hall that have shaped the way I view my political and social impact,” he said. The importance of having the hard skills is something Zeitlinger deeply understands, and he hopes all students involved in his campaign can walk away with a newly acquired appreciation for them.

Zeitlinger’s primary election will take place on June 4, 2019. Upon securing the democratic ticket, the lifelong North Haledon resident would stand for election in the New Jersey General Election on November 5, 2019.

For more information, please contact with contact information and working experience. A formal resume or cover letter is not required but is greatly appreciated. If you a School of Diplomacy student and are interested in receiving academic credit for this summer opportunity, contact with questions.

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