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Student's Summer Experience is Immersion in Public Policy at the Nation’s Capital

Last Updated on October 01, 2018 at 12:00 AM

Originally published October 01, 2018

By Lorena Garcia

Doctoral student, Educational Leadership and Foundations

I am a doctoral student with UTEP’s Educational Leadership and Foundations Program, which has prepared me to conduct research in critical education issues such as the traumatic effects of family separation on learning.

Lorena Garcia
Lorena Garcia

Thanks to my summer internship at the National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, and my fellowship with The Archer Center’s graduate public policy program, I was able to work with leading experts and scholars in education policies.

One of the memorable moments that greatly affected my research and dissertation was when Archer Center Chairman Bill Archer and center faculty shared their vision and mission to help close the opportunity gap for students. It aligned with my desire to help disadvantaged students in grades K-12 to be successful and to prepare them for a wide spectrum of academic and professional opportunities. I also will remember a guest speaker’s advice to lead with compassion.

The collaborative learning experiences I had with scholars, and the networks I established in Washington, D.C., have influenced my future career goals and area of research study. I am an education practitioner who plans to focus my doctoral research around education policy and eventually become an education policy analyst.

While my peers and I spent most of our time working and studying, we also got to enjoy the nation’s capital and its surroundings. I visited the Capitol, the Smithsonian museums and many historical sites. I celebrated the Fourth of July on the National Mall and enjoyed many of the area's diverse eateries and arts and entertainment activities.

I was grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the summer 2018 Public Policy Graduate program with The Archer Center. That participation, along with my doctoral degree, will open so many doors for me at the local, state and federal levels.

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