Erin Marshall was an Undergraduate Scholar in 2015 when she interned for the Democratic National Committee (DNC).
Where are you from?
Where did you go to school? What did you study?
I attended Wake Forest University, where I studied politics and international affairs.
What was the best part of your internship?
My internship left me with lifelong connections that I would never have made without this experience. Not only did I make lifelong friends who share the same passions and commitments to service as I have, I made connections to people who have become incredible mentors to me. Since my internship, there have been innumerable times when I have reached out to people that I met at the DNC for career and life advice. There is nothing more valuable than receiving advice from people that were in your shoes years before and have managed to get to a place in their life that you aspire to reach one day. It has been incredible to be able to experience the culture among people who work in public service in which they so desire to be able to help others to reach their goals.
What lessons did you learn that you would like to pass on to future interns?
Do not be afraid to ask. You never get what you don’t ask for. There were so many times I would be afraid to ask a question or ask for advice and possibly missed out on opportunities. The best decision I made during my internship was asking someone who worked at the DNC to have coffee with me to talk about their job and having them ask me what took so long.
What are you doing now?
I most recently worked for the Hillary Clinton campaign in Ohio. We had a different outcome than we had hoped for but right now I am really lucky because I am getting to take some time to travel and be with my family before joining my next campaign. I am now working for Ralph Northam for Governor in Virginia and I’m really excited to work for a candidate who has such a strong record of fighting for women.
What do you hope to be doing in 10 years?
It is so difficult for me to imagine the next 10 years! But the only thing I have ever imagined doing is working in electoral politics. While I know so many people are cynical about it right now, good government has the ability to make such a positive impact on people’s lives. After working on the 2016 campaign, I have become even more certain that I want to spend the rest of my career working for people in government who are dedicated to improving the lives of the people they serve.
What is your favorite book and what are you reading now?
My favorite book is probably A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I recently read Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur and would definitely recommend it. After finishing up with election season, it was exactly what I needed to read.
Tell us a fun fact!
One time I got to have lunch with American poet and civil rights activist Maya Angelou at her house. She was a professor at my school and invited about ten of us over to thank us for the work that we did on the 2012 election. I got to sit right next to her! It might have been one of the most incredible and intimidating moments of my life.