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Tara Marks, 1L, Testifies Before the U.S. Senate Budget Committee
Tara Marks, a first year law student from Pittsburgh, Pa., testified before the U.S. Senate Budget Committee during a hearing on the impact of federal budget decisions on families and communities. Marks described how federal programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Pell grants, provided aid in her time of need. “I was able to lift [my son] and myself out of poverty by finishing school. SNAP was a critical factor in my success.”
She asked Committee Chair Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and other members of Congress to “invest in life-saving programs so that families like mine all across the country can get the support they need to get back on their feet, back on track, and back into a job.” Senator Murray recognized Tara’s accomplishments of graduating college and going to law school as proof that “taxpayers got a pretty good return on their investment.”
Stephanie (Spirer) Crandall, BA ’03 and president of the Capital City Polar Bears, ONU’s Washington, D.C. alumni chapter, was in the audience. “Tara’s story served as a great example of how federal aid programs were designed to be safety nets when people needed them most. If Washington took a lesson from Ohio Northern and treated people as more than just budget numbers, perhaps more people could reach their potential and become leaders in their communities like Tara,” she said.