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Hello, my name is Laura Knight. I am a senior at Indiana University, majoring in Policy Studies with a focus in Criminal Justice. I previously majored in Social Work at Ivy Tech Community College before transferring to IUPUI. My current major will allow me to pursue policy advocacy and research, while keeping the door open to graduate school or law school.

Before Ivy Tech & IUPUI, I attended high school in Wapakoneta, Ohio. This is a small town nestled in northwestern Ohio, where Drive Your Tractor to School Day was a regular, yearly event. During this time in my life I was involved in French club, Spanish club, cross country and track, and a rabbit breeder with 4-H. After high school I attended Ohio Dominican University for a short while, quickly recognizing collegiate studies was not a focus for me in 2008.

As a non-traditional student, I’ve gained a lot of experience in a variety of job fields. My previous experiences include Restaurant Manager, Customer Service Representative, e-Commerce Demand Analyst and e-Commerce Manager. Although my experience has been business-related, a degree in the public sector and the ability to give back to the community is truly my passion. I volunteered mentoring at-risk youth, tutored children living in homeless shelters and assisted at various food pantries before recognizing my interest in community work in 2015. While I was a Social Work major, I interned with Indianapolis Housing Agency which serves the community with safe and affordable housing for low-income residents.

I am thrilled to be chosen as the Government Affairs Intern with the Indiana Chamber of Commerce. Not only do I get to work with lobbyists & lawmakers, this internship will help shape my future in the public sector. When people ask, “why major in public policy?” the answer being that I enjoy problem solving of complex issues and writing. Research has always been something I naturally gravitate towards, and the ability to utilize my skills in a way that can impact our community my dream. When something sparks my interest, I become quite obsessive and creative at understanding the dynamics of it, which led me to pursue a degree in policy.

When I’m not in class or interning, I’m usually buried in schoolwork or researching a topic that has grasped my mind until I fully understand it. You can also find me at local festivals selling natural, handmade soaps too. I also love to sing and play the guitar to rock & old blues tunes.

My personal life is quite creative, and I use this creativity in my professional work as well. Over the years I have learned to use my creative strength in whatever I am doing as it brings a certain level of authenticity to the table. To quote the late Janis Joplin, “freedom’s just another word for nothin’ left to lose”, and with that freedom to recognize and utilize my strengths provides me with a fulfilled feeling that I have nothing to lose – and everything to gain in my future.

I look forward to working with the Government Affairs team and having the freedom to help shape understanding of the policy issues that affect us.

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