July 4, 2019
Read time : 5 min

In his opening remarks at the 2019 Fiscal Summit, Michael A. Peterson, CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, spoke about the importance of “Building America’s Future” – and ensuring our nation’s fiscal sustainability will endure challenges over the long term. 

The hard work put forth by the Year 7 Up to Us Campus Competition participants reaped rewards on a national scale this month as the top 20 finalists traveled to Washington, D.C. for an all-expenses paid trip to meet with industry experts, members of the media, and Congressional leaders for three days of exciting events.

Up to Us students at Politico.

To kick off the first day, the Up to Us finalist teams received a private newsroom tour of POLITICO, a premier media outlet that provides nonpartisan and unbiased coverage of Congress and the federal government This was followed by a panel discussion with an incredible team of journalists including Marianne LeVine, Elizabeth Ralph, Margy Slattery, Ben Schreckinger and Tyler Weyant

Following the media meeting that morning, Up to Us participants attended the “Creating Careers with Impact” career panel moderated by Chief of Staff for Rep. Brendan Boyle (D-PA), John McCarthy. Much like how the students in the Up to Us program represent a diverse portfolio of majors and area of study, the panelist represented different sectors and focus areas. Mickey Bergman, Vice President and Executive Director of the Richardson Center for Global Engagement, Alexander Kyerematen, Regional Director – Africa, Global Fund for Children, and Mary Reding, External Affairs, National Commission on Military, National, and Public Service discussed the path they took to their current career and the important work they contribute in their jobs.

The day concluded with a discussion on fiscal governance with Lisa Driskill of the Office of Management and Budget, where she provided an in-depth overview of the budgeting process in preparation for the second day of events, which centered around the Peter G. Peterson Fiscal Summit, where the Up to Us Year 7 winning team, Oakland University, was announced live and recognized on stage by Chairman and CEO, Michael Peterson. Throughout the day, Up to Us got to hear directly from our nation’s most prominent leaders such as Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Acting Chief of Staff to the President Mick Mulvaney. 

Nanci Pelosi and the Up to Us winners at the 2019 fiscal summit.
Photos courtesy of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation

Following the Fiscal Summit, Up to Us students then participated in a series of career-focused dinners around the city, where they could meet with business leaders in a variety of industries to learn more about their career path, receive advice for securing jobs and internships, and obtain candid reflections and insights from the industry mentors on how to create a career with impact.

The final day of events culminated with Up to Us on Capitol Hill where the students met with multiple staff members from the House Committee on the Budget, the Office of Representative Biggs and the Office of Senator Perdue. These meetings enabled Up to Us students to explore the career path of elected officials, learn more about the legislative process and discuss the fiscal and economic policy priorities of the 116th Congress.

Up to Us Students in Washington DC.
Photo courtesy of Frederick Uy

The busy, yet energizing and transformative three days of events and networking opportunities are likely just the beginning of a life of leadership and advocacy for the Up to Us year 7 finalists and winners. 

To see more behind-the-scenes photos of this year’s D.C. trip, check out the Up to Us Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages. 

To learn more about how to get involved in the movement, or to register a team to participate in the 2019-2020 Campus Competition visit www.itsuptous.org.