PeerForward Hosts Princeton PICS Summer Intern

For three consecutive years, PeerForward has proudly hosted summer interns from Princeton University through the Princeton Internships in Civic Service (PICS) program. The PICS program was founded by Princeton alumni in 1996 to encourage students to engage in meaningful summer internship opportunities that contribute to nonprofit and civic service work being done nationwide. 

This summer, PICS intern Anna Macknick ‘21 joined our Marketing and Communications team after learning of PeerForward’s mission. Coming from a low-income/first-generation college student background herself and having worked with other college access organizations before, Anna says, “What set PeerForward apart was its model. I appreciated that the organization was set up with a student focus and horizontal mentorship, centering students as the key leaders in creating a college-going culture in their high schools.” 


Anna Macknick, 2019 PICS intern, at the PeerForward office in Washington, DC. 

Using the design skills she gained through her work with the Princeton Student Design Agency, she spent her internship creating new social media content surrounding the three college-going campaigns our Peer Leaders run throughout the school year. Not only did this project help her to improve her design skills, she says, it also helped her gain a closer look at the work behind nonprofit communications. Throughout the summer, Anna also had the opportunity to do live social media coverage of different program events, like Impact Day with Deloitte and our Summer Workshop at Washington College. “By far the Washington College workshop was the highlight of my time here with PeerForward,” she says. “I loved getting to meet with the students we worked with, as well as hearing stories from some of the seasoned veterans who have been with PeerForward for years and years.” 

Watch below to learn more about Anna’s PICS internships at PeerForward in her self-produced video below:  


Last summer, PeerForward welcomed PICS intern Emma Panullo ‘22, a Princeton student from the Class of 2020 majoring in Economics. Emma worked as a Program Operations Intern at PeerForward, helping to coordinate and ensure Summer Workshops ran smoothly and supporting program operations for collaborations with our corporate partners, like Impact Day with Deloitte. Reflecting on her internship, she says, “The highlight of the summer was attending the workshop at Towson University.  After spending the summer planning and preparing for the workshop, it was cool to see everything come together and witness the impact that it makes in student’s lives.” Now back at Princeton and serving as co-president of the PICS Student Advisory Council, Emma says, “One of the biggest takeaways from that summer was learning how nonprofits run. Service is incredibly important to me, so I definitely plan to stay involved in nonprofits or civic service for years to come.” 

Emma Panullo (far left), 2018 PICS Intern at Deloitte Impact Day 2018. 

Our very own Communications Coordinator, Victoria Navarro spent her first days at PeerForward as a PICS Intern. Victoria, a 2018 graduate of Princeton University, spent her internship learning everything that PeerForward has to offer. Not only did she create a community organizing guide for all Peer Leaders, but her research was also later included in the handbooks distributed to every Peer Leader across the nation. During her PICS experience, she volunteered to as a Writing Coach, a cherished role at PeerForward that guides our Peer Leaders through a reflection of their personal experience and leadership qualities to construct the basis of the personal college essays. She excelled at the role, which furthered her commitment to the mission and her connection to PeerForward. As a great benefit to our organization, Victoria has as continued to use her mastery of storytelling as a Writing Coach.   

Victoria Navarro (right) interviewing PeerForward Alumni, Mohammed Gomaa (left).

As our Communications Coordinator, she works closely with our Peer Leaders to capture their hopes for the future and the motivation behind their pursuits with our Forward Thinkers campaign. By continuing to encourage Peer Leader to tell their stories, Victoria has come full circle from her time as a PICS Intern. 


You can see Anna and all of our Summer 2019 Interns on our Instagram, here!

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