UMass - Lowell and TWC "Learn with Purpose"

UMass - Lowell and TWC "Learn with Purpose"

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Savannah Moix
March 20, 2015

A longstanding commitment to hands-on student learning opportunities for students has made the University of Massachusetts Lowell a premier academic institution for more than 120 years. UMass Lowell’s curriculum is based on the notion of “Learning with Purpose,” an educational tenet that makes the national research university’s affiliation with The Washington Center a perfect fit.


Over the course of UMass Lowell’s 10-year partnership with TWC, students have participated in top-notch internship opportunities, gaining knowledge and experience that will facilitate their transition from college to career. 


Eye-opening Internships


Douglas Emerson, a Law & Criminal Justice intern, wanted an in-depth understanding of federal law enforcement when he arrived for his TWC program in spring 2015. Through his internship with the Management Support Division of the U.S. Marshals Service and his academic course, Criminal Law and Criminal Procedure, Douglas’ preconceived perceptions of the role and structure federal government and law enforcement have been challenged.


“After a lot of site visits to different federal law enforcement agencies and hearing from a number of different professionals in careers related to law and criminal justice, this experience has opened my eyes to more options and more careers in the federal government,” Emerson says.


Sharing Knowledge with UMass Lowell’s Community


The civic engagement and professional development engagement that TWC interns experience while participating in the program eases the transition into students’ post-TWC careers. This was the case for Rachel Saunders ’14. Saunders interned in the Office of International Affairs in the U.S. Department of Justice. Her experience helped her make a meaningful contribution to her human trafficking civic engagement module at TWC, an experience she feels boosted her philanthropic spirit and helped other TWC students get involved in the D.C. community.


“My experience taught me to set higher goals,” Saunders says. “TWC showed me that nothing is out of reach and taking proactive steps will get you where you want to go,” says Saunders.


Saunders has returned to UMass Lowell to finish up her undergraduate degree in political science, but she stays in touch with her internship supervisors, advisors, coworkers, instructors and friends at TWC. She has this advice for the future TWC students:


“Take advantage of every single opportunity that is presented to you in D.C. The semester truly does change your perspective on yourself and the workforce – let it transform you.”


Including Saunders, 13 UMass Lowell students completed TWC’s fall 2014 program:


· Alan Annicchiarico – Jacques and Associates, Inc.

· Thomas Arsenault – U.S. Marshals Service

· Wesley Boudreau – U.S. Investigation Services, LLC

· Emily Dasey – American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy

· Austin Kuhs – U.S. Marshals Service

· Andrew Ladd – U.S. Marshals Service

· Mackenzie Mahoney – National Defense University

· Ryan McGloin – Montgomery County (Md.) Public Defender’s Service

· Salvatore Schiano – U.S. State Department

· Brian Trearchis – U.S. Marshals Service

· Andrew Valcourt – Jacques and Associates, Inc.

· Stephen Walsh – U.S. Marshals Service

· Michael Wilkinson – U.S. Department of the Interior, Office of Surface Mining


Liaison Assistance and Approval


Francis Talty, assistant dean of the College of Fine Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, serves as UMass Lowell’s campus liaison. Talty believes TWC’s internship program is highly beneficial for students’ professional and personal development. Since he began his tenure as UMass Lowell’s liaison in 2006, Talty has witnessed students thrive during their time in Washington and beyond. 


“We send some of our best students to TWC and when they return, their perspective has not just changed, but their sights have broadened and elevated beyond the boundaries of their college campus,” he says.  “The number of my students who return to Washington after graduation is a testament to the long-term impact program has on students.”


The Washington Center is proud to partner with more than 400 colleges and universities in the United States. Affiliate Spotlights showcase outstanding partners that serve as models for other institutions in creating and sustaining high-impact programs in partnership with TWC.

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