(Editor's Note: The Why Wheaton series will aim to document many alumnae/i and current student-athletes' stories throughout each month in an attempt to share why our past and present student-athletes have chosen to attend Wheaton. The goal of this series, which will be a mix of in-depth articles, quick highlights, videos and feature stories, is to showcase the amount of opportunities we have here at Wheaton. Hope you enjoy the stories.)
NORTON, Mass. – The mission of Wheaton College is to provide a transformative liberal arts education for intellectually curious students in a collaborative, academically vibrant residential community that values a diverse world. What Wheaton College also does is provide a bevy of opportunities for its students during their time at the college. We recently caught up with women's tennis student-athlete Alexandra Marlowe '15 (Mesa, Ariz./Mountain View) for a question-and-answer session about her 2013 summer internship with U.S. Senator John McCain.
Wheaton Athletics: How did you get an internship in U.S. Senator John McCain's Phoenix, Arizona office?
Marlowe: I was able to get the internship by applying through John McCain's office. I submitted my resume, cover letter, a response as to why I wanted to intern in his office specifically and then completed an interview. After that, they offered me the internship within that week.
Wheaton Athletics: Alex, usually it takes a while to be offered an internship of that magnitude. How did it feel to get a response so quickly?
Marlowe: It was an amazing feeling, one that was definitely unexpected. I remember sitting in my room in Keefe, in disbelief. It was awesome to see how my hard work had really paid off.
Wheaton Athletics: What did you learn in your time in Senator McCain's office?
Marlowe: By working in his state office, I was able to see how John McCain and his staff directly affect the constituents within Arizona and how much they do on a day-to-day basis to ensure that they are getting the necessary help, whether it be with their social security or their health insurance plans. I was also able to see how difficult it is to actually be a permanent staff member. You have to deal with all sorts of people who all have the right to call the office and voice their opinion(s). While at times this is extremely interesting, it can also be very difficult to refrain from inserting your own opinion or correct them when they provide false information about the Senator. I also learned that while it was really interesting to deal with the constituents and their specific issues, I believe that if I were to go into politics, I would much rather be on the legislative side of it. Similarly, the internship allowed me to see how well I can function in high pressure situations.
Wheaton Athletics: What were your goals going into this internship?
Marlowe: My goals for the internship were to learn as much as possible and to see what I really had a passion for when working in the office. I also wanted to make and secure good connections that I would be able to use later on in my life.
Wheaton Athletics: Did you feel as if you accomplished your goals?
Marlowe: I feel like I was able to accomplish the goals I had set for myself. For one, the connections I made in the office, specifically with my direct boss, helped me significantly when I applied for the internship in Washington, D.C. Her recommendation letter gave me an edge over a lot of the other applicants, and I am very grateful for that, because without having had the internship in the Phoenix office I would not have had that advantage. Secondly, I do think that by working in the office I was able to see what I did and did not like. While it was interesting and eye-opening to work with constituents, I am really looking forward to being able to see the other side of what Senator McCain and his staff do in D.C.
Wheaton Athletics: What are your plans after graduation?
Marlowe: After graduation, I am planning on taking a year off to work, take the LSATS and apply to law school. I am very interested in politics, but at this point I am focusing on studying for my LSATS and getting my application ready to be sent in to ensure that I get into a law school that will best set me up for my future. During my year off, I would love to work on a campaign if at all possible. This would allow me to see yet again, another aspect of politics. I also have been offered an internship with Senator McCain's Washington D.C. office for this upcoming summer. I am not sure where my future will lead me, but having had the amazing opportunity to intern in Senator McCain's Phoenix office, not only taught me a lot about myself and how I am able to handle pressure, but also made me realize that if I choose to go into politics after law school, I would like to focus on the legislative aspect.