Fourth Academics Garner Knowledge and Experience from a Range of Internships
Gaining invaluable experience in the real world, our Fourth Academics just wrapped up their two-week internships at varying organizations in the DC metropolitan area. Below, we highlight a few students and their impressions of their experiences while interning. We are so grateful to all the sponsors who hosted our student interns.
Shira Nash ' 19 - Plan USA International
"My internship at Plan USA International was not only informative, but eye-opening and inspiring. This organization's mission is to 'strive for a just world that advances children's rights and equality for girls' and Plan is undoubtedly doing that work. Plan has established influential programs and partnerships in over 70 developing countries, all focusing on tackling some of the worlds most challenging issues surrounding childhood poverty. As an intern, I mostly assisted with the logistical aspects of one of Plan's programs, the Youth Leadership Academy. To prepare for this week-long program in July, I constructed workshops and activities for the students, and attended meetings and international webinars. Through truly immersing myself on both the planning and action steps to bring a program to life, I have gained a greater appreciation for the hard but necessary work that nonprofits do to change the world. Even though I was only at Plan for a week, I feel that I contributed to a program that can change the lives of many."
Sofia Rojas '19 - FasterCures
"My internship with FasterCures could be summed up with two words: awe inspiring. The nonprofit is a subsection of the larger Milken Institute which is multifaceted economic think tank that hosts conferences and funds research for policy issues around the country and the world. FasterCures follows drug pipelines throughout each phase of getting authorized and released to the market where they can be bought by consumers. While working with the organization, the veil over the healthcare system fell and I saw the system for what it really was: broken. The day to day work varied from busy work such as putting names and data into an excel document to doing foundational research for the growth of a new sector of the organization to sitting in on meetings and conference calls. I was also given the opportunity to talk to every member of the FasterCures team about their paths to how they found their way into healthcare and subsequently, FasterCures. Each member demonstrated for me how your path can start from anywhere and end in a completely different area than you had intended."
Nadine Daboub/ Vitamin Sea Design
"For my internship I worked with Vitamin Sea Design, a company that customizes items such as blankets, yoga mats, towels, bags and much more. I learned a lot about graphic design and how long it takes to make a perfect individualized order. I learned about profit margins and the reasoning behind them. I was able to engage in setting up the website and adding new products that I had designed, it was amazing to see something that I had created on her website. Overall I had an amazing experience and wouldn't change any of it!"
Sophie Thompson/ Sibley Memorial Hospital
"I spent my internship observing Dr. Armine Smith and her co-worker Dr. Justin Banabdallah in Sibley Hospital's Urology Clinic. I was able to sit in on patient consults, see various small procedures, and learn how to treat ailments, such as pancreatic cancer and kidney stones. Through my internship, I was able to learn a lot about the ins and outs of compassionate patient care and treatment. I now have a better understanding of the large responsibility urologists have to keep the members of their community healthy and a greater passion for the field of medicine."
Abby Romano '19 - The American University Athletics Department
"For my internship, I decided to combine my love of sports and interest in business, as I worked as an intern in the Athletics Department at American University. I worked with Ms. Josephine Harrington, Deputy Director of Athletics, who helped me set up interviews with multiple people in the office so I could learn about all of the different positions in the department. Among others, I met with the Senior Associate Director of Athletics, the Director of Recreational Sports, and the Controller for the university. I was surprised at the diversity of positions available and loved to hear each person's stories as how they ended up at their respective position. In addition to speaking with multiple people in the office, Ms. Harrington gave me different "projects" to work on each day which included researching athletic department statistics from Patriot League schools and organizing it in Google sheets, making graphs to organize the data, inputting student athlete financial aid data, team travel information, and other important data into spreadsheets. From this experience, I have learned that I enjoy working in college athletics and will pursue this next year in college."
Lily Gee/ The Association of Fish and Wildlife Services/ AWFA
"I spent my internship at AWFA, a governmental NGO who mitigates between federal and state agencies in terms of conservation. AWFA is a large agency who works closely with the Department of the Interior, The U.S Fish and Wildlife Services, Canada, Mexico, NGOs, and community organizations across America. During my time there, I sat in on conference calls, staff meetings, interviewed in state and out of state employees, attended a senate hearing, and primarily wrote articles and did research for various AFWA newsletters and social media accounts. My writing is published in a few letters coming out in June, as a wrote an article on the IBPES Report on Biodiversity that was debated in the senate hearing I'd attended. Overall, the most valuable experience I got out of AWFA was talking to the vast array of people in the office because they all work in the conservation field but in entirely different ways. Through getting to know such an array, I learned more about how to apply an environmental science degree in varied career paths. In addition, I learned that conservation is intrinsically interdisciplinary, so it won't be difficult to combine my passions if I decide to work in the conservation sector. Hearing my coworkers talk about their paths to AWFA gave me the confidence to try many different things in college, and most importantly, keep an open mind to everything."