My DukeEngage experience is not how I had imagined it would be when I was accepted back in December, but nevertheless, I am still growing both professionally and personally. I had hopes of engaging with a community and making a strong impact with a group of people in real life, but that has not been possible for me with my internship this summer. I am the only intern at my organization and I rarely communicate with anyone other than my supervisor, so it has been hard to create or feel as though I am part of a community. To combat this, I have tried to ask for meetings with other employees and affiliates of the organization to get a more holistic experience. So far, I have spoken with two associates of Nobis Project that are not my supervisor and I am so grateful that I did. They have given me a richer understanding of what the organization’s mission is and how it affects the communities that it aims to connect with.
More specifically, a part of my DukeEngage summer that is not going as expected is the level of impact that I’m having within the organization. I had a work plan with many tasks that I hoped to accomplish this summer, but things have been moving slower than I had anticipated. For example, I had hoped that the new Instagram account that I was supposed to take charge of for Nobis Project would’ve have been long underway by the halfway point of my internship. However, the Instagram account has not even been created yet. My supervisor has had me focusing more on research, which I still enjoy very much, but has largely pushed the making of the Instagram account off. This was disappointing to me, so I brought it up to my supervisor earlier this week and she agreed that she wanted the account to commence before the close of my internship. We now have plans to launch the Instagram this upcoming week! I am so glad that I brought up my concerns about wanting to engage on a project that would be a lasting part of this organization—communication is truly the key to success. I hope the work that I do with the Nobis Project Instagram account will expand the outreach of the organization and allow networking to begin with other similar organizations.
In general, I respond to change in a positive way. I’m always interested in trying new things and I tend to have a very open mind. However, I have seen myself become uneasy about changing some of the tasks that I had aimed to finish this summer. This, in turn, has taught me how to be more adaptable in the work space. With that, I have become more organized and confident, in terms of speaking up when I don’t understand a task at hand or need advice on how to go about what my supervisor is looking for. Unfortunately, my internship does not inject me into one particular community, so I have not learned much about resiliency in that way.