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Global Public Policy Expert Credits Career Success to Skills Learned as a StudentTECH Intern

Published January 19, 2023

 Credit: Roberto Rosas

By Kimberly Mann Bruch

Twelve summers ago, Roberto Rosas was selected as one of the first StudentTECH high school interns to assist Education Manager Ange Mason with workshop coordination at the San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego. Following his time at SDSC, Rosas completed his undergraduate degree at San Diego State University and went on to serve in the Biden-Harris Administration as a Congressional Policy Advisor at the U.S. General Services Administration.

Before his time in the executive branch, Rosas served in the House of Representatives as a congressional staffer – assisting U.S. Congressman Scott Peters, who represents California’s District 50 (previously congressional District 52) in Washington D.C. Rosas said that his SDSC internship played a helpful role in eventually acquiring this position by giving him an array of skills that were then applied to his role in Peters’ office.

“The lessons I learned at SDSC while working on a marketing project and the relationships I formed with amazing people are things that I still carry with me today,” Rosas said. “Getting involved with SDSC was my first foray into the technology space and a professional environment – it is where I learned about customer service by helping facilitate tech-focused workshops and it is where I developed my digital and project management skills by creating different designs for our marketing campaign.”

Also while at SDSC, Rosas saw how technology still centers around people. “I would work with students one-on-one in class to support their learning,” he said. “One of my favorite things from the SDSC experience was witnessing young minds at work and visibly seeing the light-bulb moments once they had a breakthrough. Equipped with experience from SDSC, I was able to find other great opportunities and leverage that experience into ways that I could make a positive impact at other organizations.”

Rosas noted that he connected with the SDSC community through one of his personal passions.

“I love to play soccer, and I found others with whom I would play. Though I didn’t think of it in these terms, I was growing my personal and professional networks while enjoying the beautiful game,” Rosas said. “SDSC was not only a great place to grow my connections, but it was also a beneficial training ground for me to develop my career skills and gain real-world experience.”

Rosas recently completed his Master’s degree at Cambridge University in the U.K. and currently serves as the Director of Global Advocacy at The Institute of Internal Auditors (The IIA), where he assists The IIA’s members across the globe with the development and execution of public policy strategies.

“Having SDSC on my resume helped connect me to more internships. Because I had worked there for so many summers, I was able to showcase my experience in the context of growth and development over the years,” Rosas said.

Illustrating the value of his tenure at SDSC, Rosas explained that the the summer before he transferred to SDSU, he attended some recruiting workshops in the career center. He said that when he showed up with his resume, which featured his SDSC internship, it garnered the attention of the recruiter of a Big Four accounting firm. That eventually led to a successful interview, followed by two internships.

“I would like to thank Ange Mason, the StudentTECH team, and everyone at SDSC for fostering a supportive, engaging, and collaborative environment,” Rosas said.