'EYE OPENING': College student interns for mayor

COLUMBIA CITY — After more than a month of shadowing Mayor Ryan Daniel, 21-year-old Zach Taylor’s internship ended Friday, proving to be an informative task.“It’s been an eye opening experience,” said Taylor. “At school we always talk about the state and federal level, and how elections work at that level or how government runs at that level. On a local level it’s not about being a democrat or being a republican, it’s about doing whatever it takes to get the job done.”Taylor first learned about the internship a few years ago when he attended Columbia City High School, but since he was told they only accepted college students, he waited a few years to apply for the internship.In the fall, Taylor will be a senior at Hanover College, studying Political Science with a minor in Business.During Taylor’s short time as an intern, Daniel said he is impressed with all the work he accomplished.“He will be missed,” said Daniel. “Zach’s done a lot of work in regards to research and evaluation of some budget items.”Taylor also attended city meetings and worked on revamping the website to make it more user friendly.“We video taped all the department heads and put them on there so everyone will know who they are and they won’t be anonymous anymore,” said Taylor. “The mayor’s is a little more in depth as it’s a little more about getting to know him.”Lastly, Taylor’s final project consisted of a welcome packet containing information on Columbia City. Throughout the experience, Taylor said the most challenging part was dealing with different people.“You have to find a way to relate to everyone, and whatever problem they have, you have to do your best to fix it because that’s the mayor’s job, to fix people’s problems, and he works a crazy amount of hours,” said Taylor.After Taylor finishes his senior year at Hanover College, he plans to further his education by attending law school or a Masters in public administration.To view the city’s website, visit www.columbiacity.net.