Hey guys! I’m also in disbelief that my internship with Mobile Baykeeper has already come to an end this summer. It was a fantastic opportunity and experience that has benefited me tremendously, and I am so excited about the knowledge and experience I have gained throughout this summer.
Specific tasks and accomplishments from my internship that have supported my learning goals, as mentioned in my previous post, have included researching and compiling a word document of city strategies and approaches for achieving sustainability as a city, and also my involvement in organized cleanup events throughout the city of mobile. When I first set off to begin my internship, my learning expectations and goals included bettering my skills at researching, brainstorming, gaining public support through education, and implementing my plan in a successful manner. Through my research and the cleanup events, I feel as though I accomplished each of these, while leaving the last one up to the staff at Mobile Baykeeper to carry out for me now that I’m no longer there! Through my research of effective environmental strategies and programs found in cities within the U.S., I have expanded my knowledge of sustainable city planning significantly. I have also experienced firsthand what it takes to effectively educate the public about environmental issues and their mitigation through the educational cleanup events I helped with throughout the summer.
I will build off this experience during the rest of my time at Tulane and beyond in many ways. Firstly, as I mentioned in my previous post, this experience solidified my determination and desire to spend the rest of my life helping cities, states, and countries become more sustainable and environmentally healthy. It’s amazing to me that after spending three months working at Mobile Baykeeper, it only makes me crave the opportunity to do similar work even more. This craving motivates me tremendously going into my first semester as a USG senator. I will be within the Student Life committee working specifically on environmental issues and mitigation on Tulane’s campus, and will use the knowledge and experience I gained during my time at Mobile Baykeeper to work hard at making Tulane one of the most sustainable universities within the U.S. My time at Mobile Baykeeper will also give me more knowledge, understanding, and perspective in my environmental studies courses this year (I’m a poli sci and environmental studies double major), and allow me to think back and remember which city strategies would help mitigate each environmental issue we discuss/learn about.
After completing my internship, I now want to focus solely on the mitigation of environmental issues from the government’s perspective. After working at Mobile Baykeeper, one of the things that became most apparent to me was the importance of government action in truly creating a sustainable future. Without the necessary government action, accomplishing our environmental goals will be very, very difficult. Therefore, the next internship experience I would like to have is one within any level of government (city, state, or federal), working to implement the strategies I researched this past summer.
Advice I would give to a student interested in an internship with Mobile Baykeeper would be the following:
1) Ask as many questions as you can. The staff members at Mobile Baykeeper are always very busy, understandably, so they are usually very focused on their next task at hand. If you ask questions, they are more than willing to answer them. This helped me learn tremendously!
Advice I would give to a student interested in this industry/field would be:
1) Be patient! Making progress on mitigating environmental issues takes a ton of patience and time. Unfortunately, opposition will always be present when attempting to make positive change, especially when it clashes with monetary interests, but if you continue to work hard at educating those around you about the importance of sustainability and its many benefits (and creating an effective way to accomplish your environmental goals) you will succeed!
Lastly, I want to thank all of you for a fantastic summer and this wonderful opportunity. I’ve enjoyed reading all of your blogs and keeping up with your incredible experiences tremendously, and I’m so excited that each of us had such a wonderful learning experience this summer. I cannot thank CELT and Mr. Thomas enough for giving me this opportunity, and I hope that, now and in the future, I can help these great people as much as they helped me this summer.
Thanks again, I can’t wait to see all of you at the celebration soon!