Get to know Business + Government Relations program track alumna Mattingly Dramer ’18.
Mattingly Dramer ’18
Hometown: Helena, Alabama
Internship: Council on Responsible Nutrition
College: Mississippi State University
What was the most interesting thing you did at your internship?
At my internship, I was given multiple opportunities to work on the Hill and get a truly immersive experience. I was able to help organize The Council for Responsible Nutrition’s “Day on the Hill” event, where many member companies of the trade association came together to meet with Congressional offices to talk about the benefits of dietary supplements and the introduction of a bipartisan SNAP Vitamin and Mineral Improvement Act in the Farm Bill. I was able to join meetings with the Congressional offices and even got to meet and speak with my state’s senator. Getting to participate and push for an amendment on Capitol Hill that would give SNAP recipients an option to fill in nutrient gaps was an awesome experience.
What did you like most about living in Washington, DC?
This city is full of opportunities and experiences that I don’t think you could get anywhere else, and that is what I loved most about living in D.C. When telling people about my time in D.C., I like to say that it felt like studying abroad without leaving the country. Exciting things happen in D.C. every single day, and when you live here you get to truly be a part of it. It is a cool feeling to live somewhere where so much history has been made and where important things happen daily.
How did you grow professionally during your time in Washington, DC?
The amount of independence and responsibility I had this summer in D..C has helped me grow professionally. I feel more prepared and confident starting my career because of it.
What was your favorite TFAS event?
My favorite event was getting to attend a site briefing at the Ronald Reagan International Trade Building. We heard from two economists with very different views on U.S. and China trade relations, which made for an interesting and informative discussion on something that is happening at the time.
What advice do you have for future TFAS students?
You get out what you put into this experience, so do as much as you can and meet as many people as you can. Work hard at your internship, ask a lot of questions, listen, take advantage of every opportunity that comes your way, and keep an open mind to other people’s opinions and beliefs.