Intern Spotlight: Thomas Pierce

This is the fourth in a series of five individual profiles of our summer 2015 student interns. This summer, Learning Life’s social enterprise partner, Signia Surfaces, has five interns who are working on marketing, sales and educational content.  To learn more about interning with Learning Life or Signia Surfaces, email    


Where were you born and raised?

I was born in Cincinnati, Ohio, but while I was still an infant my parents moved our family to the suburbs of Philadelphia, and eventually into the city itself.

What is your current occupation?

I am an undergraduate student majoring in organizational sciences at George Washington University in Washington D.C.

Thomas PierceWhat do you like to do in your free time?

I read novels (e.g., The Imperfectionists, Trainspotting, and currently, The Count of Monte Cristo), newspapers (e.g., Wall Street Journal) and magazines (e.g., The Economist) for pleasure. I also love being outside.  In the summer I like to fill my days playing rugby and tennis, skateboarding, hiking, bike riding and running. I also enjoy languages and am currently studying German.

What is the most beautiful place you have seen on Earth, and why is it so beautiful?

I went skiing in Park City, Utah this year and the views from the top of the Rocky Mountains were amazing. On the same trip, I went to Antelope Island, a national park outside of Salt Lake, Utah.  From the top of this island mountain, you can see across the great Salt Lake (which actually has no water, but glistens not unlike a mirage in the desert due to its salt deposits) upon the snow-capped Rocky Mountains.

Is there a particular life experience you have had that has shaped you as a person?  If so, what was it, and how has it shaped who you are?

Growing up in Philadelphia was a formative experience. The mentality and character of the people in Philadelphia are interesting — blunt and honest, but also very friendly. If you are being obnoxious in a restaurant in Philadelphia, for example, someone will stand up and tell you to quiet down. The same person, however, will say hello to you on the street, a not so common courtesy in some East Coast cities, especially D.C.

Why did you choose to intern with Signia Surfaces?

Signia Surfaces presented itself as a productive outlet for my time and energy, while furthering my professional career skills and offering the chance to work and interact with new and interesting people.

What are your career plans?

I am pursuing a career in management consulting, but as a young person I realize that life does not always comply with our desired plans. As long as I am happy and healthy, I will be content.