Omotola Oladapo/Graduate Student
An article was published on June 29 by the FIU Student Media Editorial Board questioning the potential of FIU in D.C., a dynamic project that aims to better connect students, researchers and alumni to national thought leaders and community partners for research endeavors or jobs.
To put it squarely: My experience in Washington has been transformative, and I am not sure this would have been the case without the resourcefulness and encouragement of my University-family mentors. Everyone from the FIU in D.C. community is eager to help each other succeed. I applaud the University leadership for taking this bold step and for being such powerful, supportive champions for its students.
The D.C. Panther network is one of FIU’s most robust, with approximately 80 of our students interning in the capital each summer in addition to the existing roughly 2,000-member alumni chapter. This is an investment in all of our futures: FIU in D.C. is more than just a physical space; it is the talent and advocacy of FIU, amplified.
Though 21 of the interns this summer do serve government offices, the remaining 24 are working at cancer research organizations for Latinos, local news stations, and even the Smithsonian. FIU in D.C. has also hosted frequent interactive panels on disciplines across the board —communications, ecology, cybersecurity, and more— to prove that this endeavor is truly a platform to benefit from for all.
More than just a career center, FIU in D.C. goes to extra mile to link interns to alumni mentors, host student-led discussions, and engage employers and interns in direct dialogue at the space. Networking with alumni and leaders at the vanguard of where our students aspire to be is, in fact, an integral part of our post-grad success —which will pay FIU back kindly over time with rising career placement ratings, and new partnerships that can arise.
Sponsors from across campus and across the community have kindly and willingly contributed thousands of dollars in support of what they see that FIU in D.C. can be. Believing in the future of FIU in D.C. is the belief in the grit and spirit of the FIU family, which transcends any physical space.
Let us not just take the 305 to the 202; let’s be the change-makers of tomorrow and let’s take our global solutions truly Worlds Ahead.
Letters to the Editor are not written by FIUSM Staff. They are submitted by readers of The Beacon. These views are separate from editorials and reflect individual perspectives of contributing writers and/or members of the University community.
Image retrieved from Flickr.