CSU Monterey Bay alumna Zoe Carter knew an internship in the nation’s capital was a long shot, but she applied anyway. She said her first reaction to learning that she had been accepted was, “Take that, you Ivy League kids. This CSU kid is at the White House.”

Carter’s four-month, unpaid stint at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue was better than anything she could have expected.

“Having the opportunity and privilege to work in the East Wing and meet and work with the people I did is something I will never forget,” she said.

Carter worked in the office of First Lady Michelle Obama from late August through mid-December, on Mrs. Obama’s “Let’s Move” initiative to combat childhood obesity and her project that supports military families, “Joining Forces.”

Carter, 24, graduated from CSUMB in 2010 with an Integrated Studies degree that combined journalism and global studies. While an Otter, she served as Associated Students president and as chair of the California State Student Association. She also studied in Spain and had an internship in London.

She has relocated to New York City.