techISH

May 3, 2007

CH7 Third Sector Tech. Internship

Filed under: Creating, MiniNovel, publishing, TVC, Writing — techish @ 1759 UTC

At the end of my second fall semester I remember talking to a fellow student and he telling me about this internship he was going to be starting after the holidays. I was very happy for him but I was also more than just a bit envious. This guy had never worked anywhere before but had more talent pouring out of his pinky in both graphics/web design as well as in the networking and technical computer areas – so I wasn’t jealous of this opportunity he more than deserved but also would greatly benefit from – just envious! Shortly after the holidays were over and the spring semester had started, I received the same opportunity! I was ecstatic! I assumed I would be working along side this fellow student. I found out however that I received the position instead of him.

“What? That doesn’t make any sense!” When I found out why, I felt I owed it to him to let him know why. This internship was not only an opportunity for me to work with a real company doing real work, but the rarest of internship situations, it was a paying position. On top of going to school full time, and working the tutor program I now had this internship. They were awesome working with us around our school schedules and these were part time positions (although they often resulted more than part time work) – but the experience alone was priceless. It was a telecommuting position and we were working with a specific grant program they’d started.

I received invaluable experience working on a design team, in a situation where I only saw them face to face during occasional staff meetings and all other correspondence was via email and I turned in files and mock ups via FTP on their server. I got to run teleconferences with multiple clients at the same time, sometimes with other employees, sometimes by myself and had to make progress reports on each of the clients in the program that I was working with. We even got to be a part of a week long conference where all the clients in the program came to Fairbanks and we were able to help them in person as well as being able to teach them as a group some of the skills they would need to keep up with their websites we were building for them.

The position also gave me an opportunity to work with the man who founded the first ISP in the interior and one of my most respected instructors. I felt like I was being showered with blessings and good luck no matter where I was and no matter which way I turned. Life was so good that year!

Not wanting this chapter to be solely about the internship position itself, the challenge here is how to tell about the internship while keeping a balanced focus on what was going on in classes at the same time and how what I was learning at both places was supporting each other.

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