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Success Connection Program Highlights Future Leaders

July 24, 2012

Photo Caption: Recent Simmons graduate Maria Costigan with U.S. Congresswoman Allyson Schwartz

The goal of the Simmons Success Connection Program is to offer students valuable insights into professional leadership opportunities, and to provide meaningful experiences for accomplished alumnae/i mentors. And that is exactly what recent alumna Maria Costigan '12 experienced.

In April, Costigan traveled to Washington, D.C., to visit Pennsylvania Congresswomen Allyson Schwartz '70, '08HD. During her Success Connection experience, Costigan sat in on a Budget Committee hearing, attended a constituent meeting, and stopped by the Democratic National Committee headquarters. For Costigan, who recently began working as Deputy Finance Director for Massachusetts Congressman John Tierney's campaign, the experience was exhilarating and reaffirming.

"The ability to sit in on the hearing was the most real that politics and policy has ever felt to me," Costigan said. "It gave me a perspective of what it looks like to work in Washington, and I could see myself there."

What makes the Success Connection program so special is the opportunity it provides to highlight the strong bond created at women's colleges. The Success Connection was formed in 1995 by the Simmons Leadership Council to help advance the career and professional development of Simmons students. Success Connection mentors include accomplished leaders in a variety of industries who provide students with real-life professional experiences. Each year, approximately 25 students are chosen and matched with Success Connection alumnae/i for a one-day job shadowing opportunity.

"My Success Connection experience opened my eyes to what is possible," said Emily Carallozzi '07, whose alumna mentor was Olivia Cohen-Cutler '75, Senior Vice-President of Broadcasting Standards and Practices for ABC News.