UT student places in national video contest, travels to D.C. | UToledo News

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UT student places in national video contest, travels to D.C.

A video Kennedy Pierce created about her internship experiences landed The University of Toledo student a ticket to the nation’s capital for the Washington Center’s prestigious awards gala.

Pierce, a third-year student at UT studying psychology, placed second in the Washington Center’s alumni intern video contest, which led to her escorting Congressman Elijah Cummings, the recipient of the 2016 Pillar Award for Professional Achievement, to the ceremony Sept. 26 in Washington, D.C. It is the center’s largest event featuring leaders of business, government and higher education.

Kennedy Pierce, left, and her roommate, Ericka Castillo, a UT student majoring in nursing who is in the ROTC Program, attended the Washington Center’s Gala Sept. 26.

Kennedy Pierce, left, and her roommate, Ericka Castillo, a UT student majoring in nursing who is in the ROTC Program, attended the Washington Center’s Gala Sept. 26.

Through the Washington Center, Pierce interned for the United States Marshals Service in the Management Support Division in the Office of Fleet Management last summer.

“It helped me narrow my focus on the things I need to make sure I accomplish until I am old enough to apply for a federal agency,” she said. “I learned how critical work experience and internships are in building a resumé and making contacts, as well as staying involved and making sure your academics are the best they can be.”

Pierce, who plans to relocate to the Washington, D.C., area after graduation, said the internship opened her eyes to the competition in her prospective career field.

She was one of two alumni of the program flown to the capital for the gala through the contest that had the students create a 30-second video that described how the center helped provide leadership opportunities.


In addition to her Washington Center internship, Pierce has worked for U.S. Sen. Rob Portman’s campaign, Future Agents in Training, and on a mission trip to Haiti. She is currently interning with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and said she has started applying to be back in D.C. to intern next summer.

“My internships have provided me with great contacts, and I believe it is very important to always keep looking forward,” Pierce said. “When I graduate in 2018, I want to make sure I have set myself up to be as qualified as possible when applying into the competitive workforce for a federal agency.”

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