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Saint Mary's Softball Player Lands Prestigious National Security Agency Internship

May 1, 2015

(Courtesy of Saint Mary's Media Relations)

MORAGA, Calif. - At the end of Saint Mary's softball season in May, junior Erica Musgrave will head across the country to take part in a prestigious internship with the National Security Agency.

According to the NSA website, Musgrave will be working side by side with employees who are the most intelligent people in the intelligence business.

"There were over 200 applicants and about 18 get into the program," said Musgrave. "It's difficult because you have to go through a very long security clearance process. They dwindle it down to about 80 kids, then they fly you out for an interview... we had to go through a polygraph, psychology evaluations... and then they did a security clearance after that. It's a very long process... I applied back in October and didn't find out until a few weeks ago."

Musgrave has consistently been a top student-athlete at Saint Mary's. She was named All-West Coast Conference honorable mention last year, hitting .295 in conference games. Additionally she was a top-notch defender at second base, making only four errors the entire year, good for a .982 fielding-percentage. In the classroom, Musgrave, a mathematics major, shared top-honors at SMC with a cumulative 4.00 GPA, sharing top honors for student-athletes at SMC.

"The internship is a 12-week program in mathematics," said Musgrave. "We will be doing research in Math. We aren't told exactly what we will be doing because everything will be classified... we aren't allowed to talk about it. We won't know what we are doing until we arrive. We do know it will be mathematics related and about what the mathematicians do at NSA."

Taken from NSA.gov, " the NSA is a world leader in the protection and exploitation of intelligence. They gather and analyze foreign intelligence to produce vital information for US policy makers and warfighters. They protect American intelligence from the ever-listening ears of adversaries, giving the Nation a decisive edge."

After her NSA experience and senior year in 2015-16, Musgrave plans on attending graduate school to get her PhD in Mathematics. She plans to pursue a career in that area or go into Academia.