A Life-Changing Experience for a University of Pikeville Two-Time Seminar Alum
Now more than ever, students have a hard time honing in on where they want to work and what they want to do for the rest of their lives. And now more than ever, a new generation of Americans is having an extremely difficult time. This problem is prevalent among students whose interests fall within the social sciences, especially those who pursue a degree without a defined specialization.
The benefits of experiential opportunities
Fortunately, more organizations are trying to create experiential opportunities for students in order to battle this modern-day problem. And many students are taking advantage of these opportunities, among them Corey Hatfield, a senior at the University of Pikeville and a two-time Fred W. Meyer, Jr. Washington Center Scholar recipient. Hatfield is an alumni of not one but two TWC seminars, and his experiences in Washington, D.C. gave him a new perspective on his career as well as new aspirations for the future.
In May 2011, Hatfield attended Top Secret, which he says gave him insight into American national security. He especially enjoyed the site visits to the Pentagon, the FBI, and the National Counterterrorism Center. After that positive experience, Hatfield says, he was eager to returen to Washington, D.C. for another seminar. In January 2012, he attended Inside Washington for an inside view of the U. S. political process. That seminar altered his career path. After just a few days of influential speakers such as Howard Dean and Steve Bell, he says, he began to consider getting involved with politics. “Before I left for the seminar, I wasn’t even considering a political career, and then a few days later I was sucked in, ” he said.
Gaining a new perspective
In addition to his new perspective, he left Washington, D.C. with new relationships with students from all over the country and a desire to one day reconnect with them and see what they all might be doing.
Experiences like the one Hatfiled had illustrate that even a two-week experiential program in Washington, D.C. can have a transformative effect on students.