Global Impact: Sarah Steverson ‘25 Chosen for State Department Fellowship

News Story categories: Academics Career Preparation Computer Science Cybersecurity Internships Student Life
A person with curly hair wearing a black shirt standing outdoors with greenery and a blurred building in the background.

When Sarah Steverson ’25 graduates from Randolph-Macon College next spring, she’ll be stepping into a career that will utilize her skills and expertise on a global scale.

Steverson, a computer science and cybersecurity double-major, is one of seven undergraduate students chosen for the U.S. State Department’s . She’ll complete an internship with the State Department this summer in Washington, D.C., supporting its information technology functions. In the summer of 2025, she’ll intern at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate abroad.

Upon successful completion of the internships and the FAIT fellowship program, which includes other mentoring and professional development opportunities, Steverson will enter a five-year commitment with the Foreign Service and receive an apportionment as a Diplomatic Technology Officer (DTO) at one of more than 270 State Department posts overseas.

As a DTO, she will be responsible for the IT and security needs of the post, which could include managing network security, operating classified servers, and much more. With American embassies in nearly every country in the world, her duties will vary widely depending on the diplomatic needs and location of the appointment, which will rotate after two years.

Spanning the globe will come naturally for Steverson, who hails from Haymarket, Virginia.

“I’d like to say traveling is a little bit in my blood,” Steverson explained. Her father worked for the government and traveled often, while her mother was born and raised in Hungary before moving to the United States. Steverson, a California native, lived in Hungary for two years before moving to Virginia, and often returned to Hungary when she was a teenager to volunteer at a summer camp that teaches English language and Canadian/American culture to children from Hungary and other European countries. 

“I think it’s really important to see the world,” Steverson said. “It gives you a different perspective into the way people live in different cultures.”

Steverson’s experiences at 91Ƶ, both inside and outside the classroom, have helped prepare her for a globetrotting career. She’s served as a tour guide, teacher’s aid, and resident assistant, is a member of the Honors and Leadership Fellows programs, performed in an 91Ƶ musical production, and was a part of the LUXE Show Choir.

She also points to the mentorship of faculty members in her degree programs for their support, and for consistently challenging her to reach the next level on concepts in the classroom.

“I love every single professor I’ve had in this program. They’re just all really supportive and kind, and they’re there when I have questions,” Steverson said. “They give coding assignments and homework and labs that really challenge us. We have to dig deeper than just the lectures to understand, and they make us collaborate about it and really go deep into it.”

With all the experiences and passions Steverson has collected throughout her time at 91Ƶ, she believes it is equally important to ensure that her impact is not only found within U.S. embassies but also outside of them. By extending her influence beyond U.S. embassies, Steverson aspires to foster positive change and make a tangible difference in the lives of locals, youth, and the disadvantaged in communities she visits.