CAS ’18 | Sociology
CCD: Tell us about your internship experience. What were your responsibilities?
Vanessa: As a Counselor, I worked together with the other Counselors to oversee the athletic and creative side to the Upward Bound program. Throughout the day, I would provide supervision while talking and interacting with the students. I ran an athletic or creative activity such as soccer, painting, or making friendship bracelets. In addition, I taught a cooking workshop that combined food justice themes with international cuisine. I helped tutor the students during Study Hall. All the Counselors and Tutors would collaborate on whole group activities and running floor meetings. Overall, I was a resource for the students if they ever had problems or questions about academics, college, or life in general.
CCD: What was the best thing about the experience? What was the worst?
Vanessa: The best thing about this experience was interacting with students who do not get a lot of academic or social support. Seeing them become confident in their studies and themselves was so rewarding and made the experience worthwhile. The worst thing about my summer experience was the constant changing circumstances. The program got reinvented this year so there was a lot of trial and error for a lot of different aspects of the program. Having to constantly adapt to the changing program at times was frustrating.
CCD: What’s next for you?
Vanessa: After this summer, I know now that I definitely want to help first-generation, low-income students achieve their higher education goals whether that be a four-year private institution or a trade school. While I’m open to other possible careers, I want to focus on working in higher education and helping students that come from underrepresented areas.