An excerpt from Mollie's winning essay:
With a family tree comprised of Buzzards, Muskrats and Snails one might question my personal values, character traits and career objective. Being a "Buzzard" taught me the value of a sense of humor at an early age. Growing up on a farm presented opportunities to develop character, almost on a daily basis. Traits laid out for me included a strong work
ethic, perseverance, integrity and a cooperative spirit. Along with a unique name and heritage, my family laid a strong moral bedrock for me to continue to build upon as I pursue my goal of Special Agent (SA) for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).
Respect, gratitude and awe describe my feelings toward my ancestors.
They embraced opportunity despite personal adversity. On my father's side, my Cherokee family endured innumerable hardships as they were forcibly relocated from their homeland in North Carolina to Indian Territory on the Trail of Tears in 1838. Overcoming this challenging
situation, they cultivated a life and homestead of which they were proud. My mother's great-grandfather was a German immigrant who came to America penniless at the age of 17. He participated in the Great Land Run of 1893 and settled a farm in the Cherokee Strip. Compelled
to give back to their country, my relatives served in World War I, World War II, the Korean Conflict, Vietnam, Desert Storm and are currently stationed in Iraq. This rich heritage enables me to truly appreciate the role of the FBI. A trademark of my family, I possess
the desire to serve my country and believe the Bureau presents the arena in which I can be of greatest assistance in maintaining the sovereignty of the United States of America.
The position of SA was solidified as my career choice after serving in the capacity of FBI Honors Intern in Washington D.C. this past summer. I was immediately welcomed as an integral member of the team by the Analysis and Policy Unit (APU) of the Mission Support Section
(MSS) of the Security Division (SecD) of the FBI. This experience allowed me to interact with, and garner insight and knowledge from, individuals who have established that their number one priority is to ensure the integrity of America and her people.
While meeting with my supervisor the first day I was given an overview of the projects I was to complete during my time at FBI headquarters (FBIHQ). By the middle of August I was to have
researched and written the Security Risk Analysis (SRA) Update and the Security Risk Journal (SRJ). I was also expected to process the Security Risk Assessment reports received by SecD from Bureau field offices, divisions and technology centers across the nation. In addition to these duties it was my responsibility to assist my team members and supervisor with projects that arose during my tenure.
The SRA Update is a quarterly bulletin disseminated to all FBI field offices and members of law enforcement agencies (LEAs) and the intelligence community (IC). Its purpose is to highlight and provide methods to combat current and emerging security risks. The purpose of
the SRJ is the same as that of the SRA Update; however, the SRJ is a bi-annual publication and considerably more substantial in length. I interviewed numerous sources throughout FBIHQ to gain material for these projects. In my quest to achieve a thorough understanding of the
subject matter, I also consulted with other members of LEAs and the IC, such as the Secret Service. From these preliminary interviews I was able to formulate ideas to research and develop for both publications.
I received the mission of processing the Security Risk Assessment reports halfway through my internship and, because of the sheer volume of reports and enormous amount of information to be extracted from them, was forced to set aside my previously assigned projects to focus
all of my energies on this task. This "unexpected" job served as a highly effective lesson in time management as it was either finish these reports or give up my highly anticipated trip to New York. Loathe to sacrifice a five hour ride on a bus with no air conditioning
during the peak of a July heatstroke, I worked out a schedule and accomplished the project on time. My assigned tasks were designed to allow me to contribute to the mission of the Bureau and gain awareness of the organization of which I aim to become a member. They were
successful in their objectives. The work was both challenging and rewarding, yet the greatest challenge lay in deciphering the endless stream of acronyms of which the Bureau is so fond.
Serving as an intern was not all work and no play. A session at the gun range was arranged by a supervisor. Upon arrival I witnessed agents fulfilling their required quarterly shoots. After observing their superior skills, I was hesitant to publicly display my shooting abilities. I use
the term "shooting abilities" loosely, as I was restricted from gun use by my brothers after an unfortunate BB gun incident early in my childhood. After taking a great deal of ribbing for arriving in high heels a good time was had by all as a few other interns and myself were granted the opportunity to handle a variety of weapons. I desperately wanted to retain
my silhouettes as souvenirs. However, I was unable to devise a plan to transport them on the Metro without invoking mass terror. Thinking ahead, I realized that even if I was able to move them from FBIHQ to my home in Springfield, Virginia it was highly unlikely I would be successful in ushering them through the airports upon my return trip to Oklahoma.
My rural background and family, complete with decidedly unconventional names, contributed to the development of a deeply rooted set of values. They provided me with a priceless education. It is now time to expand upon the knowledge I have cultivated over a lifetime and give
back to the people, society and the country that have provided me with everything. The FBI is where my future lies. The attainment of a law degree from the University of Iowa will allow me to be highlycompetitive in the achievement of my goal."