Monthly Archives: June 2014

Halfway Point at Fit NOLA

we are new orleans

Hey everyone,

I’m nearing the halfway point here at my summer internship with Fit NOLA, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s going to end in 4 weeks, as they’ve just asked me to continue this Fall! I think I will definitely try to fit that into my class schedule because I’ve actually gotten the chance to put my public health knowledge to work here, and I feel like I often am learning a lot more here than I do during a normal class.

Over the past couple of weeks, my main responsibility has been to completely re-do their newsletter. I met with the IT department and created a template for it on I was required to update their database and contact Fit NOLA’s partners with requests for logos/fliers for their events to include in the Newsletter. After putting the whole thing together, I had to receive approval from the head of the Department of Health before sending it out. Overall, the newsletter reached about 500 people. If you click this link, you can see the final result:

As part of my internship, I am also responsible for communicating with the sector chairs who lead the sectors I am in charge of – the community sector and the early childhood sector. I’ve just started communications with them, and soon I will set up a meeting with them so that we can talk about goals for the sectors this quarter. I will then help them lead the meeting with each sector group. This should be pretty interesting because my bosses allowed me to pick the sectors I was most interested in, so I’ll get to communicate with a lot of professionals that have similar interests to mine. I hope this will provide some good network opportunities when the time comes!

Today, I finally found some free time (which felt weird). The newsletter, although not that complex, was very tedious, since we had never used that program before. So, I asked my supervisor for some stuff to do, and she decided that to combine my majors of Public health and Spanish, I should do some translating for them! So, I am going to begin translating the newsletter into Spanish. Other than that, I am still helping my supervisors work on putting together a memo and letter of intent for a grant we are applying for (that they’ve let me basically name and create)!

If you guys haven’t seen the facebook page for Fit NOLA, take a look and LIKE IT!!!

That’s all for now,


Midway Through at Peace Corps

As I will be starting my fifth week at Peace Corps, I am almost exactly half way through my internship. One week in I came up with objectives/ goals I wanted to achieve during my time at Peace Corps and shared them with both of my supervisors to hold me accountable. My objectives were the following:

  1. By July 1st I will have created my own Data Tools and uploaded them onto the Peace Corps Intranet for posts abroad to use.
  2. By July 20th I will have attended 20 professional development workshops put on by Peace Corps (i.e. Brown Bags, lectures, tutorials, etc.).
  3. By the end of the summer I will have spoken to three different professionals in the field of international development regarding the path they took to get to where they are today (i.e. masters programs, PC, field experience, etc.).
  4. By the end of my internship I will have read two Programming and Training manuals from the Knowledge and Learning Unit.

So far I have completed objective 1 (well before the objective date). In regards to objective 2, I have attended 10 professional development workshops put on by Peace Corps. I may have to extend the deadline to a more realistic one but we will see as time goes on. I currently have one lunch meeting set up with the head of the Evaluation Unit at PC and a coffee meeting set up with one of my supervisors to discuss my future, how they ended up at PC, where they’ve worked previously, etc. (objective 3). And finally, I am half way through objective 4, having read one training manual on the role of the volunteer in development and the promotion of capacity building.

The goal setting was just one of the ways I have tried to make the most of my internship. I have such a fabulous opportunity working for, what I would argue, the coolest federal agency. I have an excel table with my goals and check-in dates to meet with my supervisor and assess my progress. I also created an excel document to monitor and track the activities, tasks and seminars I attend. I’ve also reached out to meet with people in the office to look over my resume and discuss interview skills.

Objective 1 is what I am most proud of. For the first two weeks I was solely responsible for uploading data collection tools, made by sector specialists and our resident MRE employee responsible for data collection tools. Finally, it was my turn to create, design and develop my own data collection tools, in conjunction with the CED sector specialist, for the Community Economic Development sector. They are now on the PC Intranet page for posts and volunteers to use abroad. They will improve the overall data quality.

Everyday I learn something new and everyday I am even more grateful for this opportunity. All of the skills I have learned and will be learning in the future are transferable to my career and marketable to future employers. I am gaining real world experience with the government and it’s intoxicating.



Midpoint in Sales Internship

My internship is wrapping up in 4 weeks! I cannot believe it. If I do well I could get a possible job offer out of it. Sales is fun, but it requires a lot of persistence. I feel like I get on peoples nerves sometimes. Its okay though. I meet a lot of cool people everyday. I also get to learn about them. Some people have cool stories about how they got to where they are today. I hope I have success like they do.

Blood, Sweat, and Baywater – First Experiences at Mobile Baykeeper

Hey guys! Due to difficulties with the blog and also my being out of the town the last week and a half, I’m finally able to post my first blog. Sorry for the delay!

I am interning this summer with an environmental non-profit in Mobile, Alabama called Mobile Baykeeper. The purpose of Mobile Baykeeper is to help protect Mobile’s bay and surrounding waterways, as well as monitoring air quality and preventing trash pollution in the city. This involves research, education of the public, and ultimately taking action (which relies in large part on the passing of policy within the city). As the Executive Director of Mobile Baykeeper has stressed to me, the process is: “Research, Education, Collaboration”.

Mobile Baykeeper is located right in downtown Mobile. Pictures will be coming shortly!

I had been familiar with Mobile Baykeeper throughout my childhood and especially during high school, due to their being well known in our county with the help of media and outreach events. Due to my interest in environmental studies, I applied for their available internship in hopes of joining their team. My internship responsibilities include conducting research for the programs department, writing regularly (including blog posts), synthesizing policy and scientific information for laymen, and attending community outreach events.

I began my internship right in time to help prepare for one of the biggest Mobile Baykeeper fundraisers of the year: the Grandman Triathlon. The fundraiser, held in Fairhope, Alabama (right across the bay from Mobile) accounts for a sixth of Mobile Baykeeper’s budget, and requires a long week of preparation. My first few days consisted of calling potential volunteers for the event. Then, as the event drew closer, I began to help set up the site. The process required the setting up of tents, food venders, banners; the placement of barricades; the making of signs; the preparation of the racecourse; and so on. And unfortunately, most of this took place in the rain due to ill timed weather during those few days. So, needless to say, it was a challenging few days, but we powered through and the triathlon was a success! I also met and worked with a ton of fantastic people/volunteers along the way, and grew much closer to the Mobile Baykeeper staff. They are all an absolute pleasure to work with and are very friendly! So, in conclusion, by the end of the week I had learned a lot about successfully planning for and managing a fundraising event for a non-profit.

After post-triathlon duties were finished, I was given the opportunity that I had eagerly been hoping for since I applied to Mobile Baykeeper. The executive director assigned me the responsibility of addressing Mobile’s trash problem by researching ways other cities have successfully cut down on trash in their bays and waterways, and creating an approach of our own. After beginning my research, I have learned that this approach must first involve conducting a study to measure how much trash is in Mobile Bay and surrounding waterways, and then determining a Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) that limits the amount of trash that can legally be released into the environment by an entity within the city (a business or restaurant for example). I have been diligently working on this project since I have returned from out of town, and I am loving it!

Lastly, my main expectation for learning this summer is being able to successfully create the beginning stages of a plan/approach for cutting down on the amount of trash pollution in Mobile’s bay and surrounding waterways. This will involve bettering my skills at researching, brainstorming, gaining public support through education, and implementing my plan in a successful manner. It won’t be easy, but I’m determined! I will absolutely keep y’all posted on how it is going.

Hope everybody’s having a great summer so far!

Learning to Teach: The beginning of my summer with Catholic Charities

Thanks to my CELT Summer Internship award, I was lucky enough to begin an internship this summer with Catholic Charities’ ESL department. I am a rising senior majoring in Spanish & Portuguese, Linguistics, and English who is interested in translation and second language instruction so I was excited to be given the opportunity to work with Catholic Charities. The Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans provides affordable and reliable English instruction and citizenship classes to our immigrant community, to students who come from Honduras, Vietnam, Brazil, Thailand and many other countries (these are just a few of the nationalities in my class!). I first learned about the Catholic Charities English as a Second Language program based out of Newcomb Hall through a service learning component of my Spanish 1020 class.

Beginning as a Teacher’s Aide, I discovered how much fun I had helping students learn English and I began teaching my own class as a sophomore, leading classes until the spring of my junior year. That year, the Latino Farmers Cooperative gave me the chance to learn about the organizational and administrative aspects of ESL programs when they took me on as a Language Exchange coordinator and then as a grant intern. My internship this summer with Catholic Charities represents a combination of my responsibilities as an ESL teacher and as a program coordinator. Over an intensive seven week program, I will lead a Level 2 ESL class as well as aid in program administration and coordinate informational presentations by local community members for the students.

It wasn’t until the first week of class that I formed a clear picture of what this internship would be. When I signed up for the internship, I was very excited to begin leading an ESL class again, especially because I was given the opportunity to teach a level I had never taught before. But I wanted to gain more experience in non-profit management by observing the program’s office manager and aiding her in her responsibilities. Fortunately, my internship supervisor understands what I want out of this internship, and asked me to help her during the program’s registration session during which I administered a survey to incoming students about potential new services Catholic Charities is developing. Experiences such as this help me learn vital professional skills such as communicating bilingually and helping to coordinate a complex event involving over 90 people. These skills could make me an appealing job candidate when I apply to non-profits in New Orleans when I graduate next year. Keeping these goals in mind, I am excited to continue working with Catholic Charities and learn to successfully coordinate my roles as instructor and program administrator over the course of this summer.

Thanks for reading!

I Love the Experience

Hey Everyone,

I have been a little late to post, but this internship has me insanely busy. So here is what has happened to me so far. I started my internship mid-May, and I have been working 8 hours every weekday. I make cold calls to businesses that will benefit from advertising to Tulane students. So far I have made a little over 10k in sales. I love this internship because I’m not sitting behind a desk all day crunching numbers. I’m out and about meeting business owners all day and having good conversations with many of them. Being in sales makes you open up to people, and it teaches you how to get others to open up to you. I have been offered a few jobs and also another internship in Marketing. This internship has made me change my professional goals. There is a big possibility that I will want to do this in the future. It can be challenging when I don’t get a sale, but its super intrinsically rewarding when I do. I know I worked hard to get the sale. I’m not sure if I could say that about being an accountant, which was my original plan. This internship also partners with career partners that monitor my progress and could potentially offer me a job. That would be amazing. I am starting to see the light at the end of the college tunnel. So in this internship we are divided by regions and I am in fifth place out of all of the schools in the South. Pretty cool huh?

That is all I have for now.


Hello again, everybody! Found myself with some time and thought I would update everyone on what I think is probably the most interesting part of my internship with Foresight Design Initiative this summer.

Every Friday, we head to downtown Chicago to participate in an Intern Lunch Series. Now what is this, you might ask? Well, the Intern Lunch Series is a brown-bag lunchtime lecture series, where my group of interns, along with other interns from a multitude of different organizations, go and visit an environmental-minded group. During these lunches, people who work at these organizations tell us a little bit about what they are doing.

Some examples of places we have gone to include the National Resources Defense Council, and the Environmental Law and Policy Center. Each opportunity has given us the chance to connect with like-minded interns that are around our own age. This has the benefit of expanding our networks and getting to know young people interested in the same topic as us. As well, it gives us the opportunity to hear from and ask questions of experts in our chosen field, and to learn more about the job opportunities that may be available for students and future graduates such as us. But finally, it gives us the opportunity to see great views of the Chicago skyline, such as those I have posted below.

View from NRDC


I am really enjoying the opportunities and knowledge that I am gaining from my internship with Foresight Design Initiative. The friends that I have made, the people I have met, and the projects that I have been working on have given me the opportunity to expand my knowledge about my chosen field and to learn skills and abilities from others that I had not thought about previously.


3 Questions

What is your internship this summer, Sam?

This summer I am working as an Investigator Intern with the Orleans Public Defenders. Public defenders are essentially a law firm that provides legal representation to indigent (poor) people accused of crimes. The Supreme Court, interpreting the Constitution has ruled that all people are entitled to a lawyer. Think about in cop tv shows/movies: when police arrest people and say “you are entitled to a lawyer…. if you cannot afford one, one will be appointed to you…..” the appointed lawyer is a public defender.

What are you internship responsibilities?

I am an investigator for the actual public defenders, the attorneys. I act as an investigator/detective in order to gather information that will prove our clients (those accused of crimes) innocent. My investigating includes talking to witnesses, reviewing security footage, and other activities. Often, I speak to the complaining witnesses, or alleged victims. Finding witnesses is frequently quite difficult, as many witnesses may lack permanent addresses or phone numbers, and some may even be homeless. This means I must canvass (search for witnesses by talking to other people in the area). I may go door-to-door in neighborhoods, or apartment complexes, or businesses and attempt to find some elusive witness.

At my internship I also perform legal administrative tasks. I serve subpoenas, submit records requests to court/hospitals, and perform jail visits to receive signatures from inmates.

How did you find and secure your internship?

I found this internship through word of mouth from previous Tulane students. I secured it by applying through the normal application process.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to posting more about my internship in the coming weeks. For now, more information can be found at the OPD website:



6/23: Overview of my first few weeks at Fit NOLA

first day

My supervisor took this picture of me on my first day of workcity hall

This is City Hall, where I go for my internship with Fit NOLA!

This summer, I am interning with Fit NOLA at City Hall, which is a physical fitness and healthy eating program that is part of the New Orleans Health Department. Fit NOLA strives to be the portal that links all healthy eating/exercise activities in New Orleans, and in order to do this, the program creates relationships with its “partners” – other physical fitness/wellness initiatives around the city. Much of Fit NOLA’s work relies heavily on the communications with these partners, so it is divided into six sectors, which are groups of people from Fit NOLA’s partners that come together quarterly in order to draft ideas for how Fit NOLA can tackle health and wellness issues in the city. I started interning in early June, and so far it has been very interesting. I am the intern in charge of the Early Childhood Sector and Community Sector. That means that I am working to identify what kinds of services already exist for early childhood health and wellness and what services the city lacks. It also means that I am in charge of creating the newsletter, which is sent out twice each month. Even though the health department (which just got accredited…woohoo!!) is pretty large, Fit NOLA actually only has about 5 staff members. Therefore, I get to do a lot of hands-on work that doesn’t just apply to my sectors because they are short-handed at times. My supervisors are very patient and enthusiastic people, and they have let me tag along to many important meetings, as well as the Spring forum.

My learning objectives were:

1) I will acquire specific knowledge about public health organizations and how they function in New Orleans, including governmental organizations (like the health department) and non-profit organizations.

2) I will acquire the professional skills, including etiquette and interpersonal skills, needed to work effectively in a professional, governmental work environment.

3) I will learn more information about how to establish public health campaigns among certain populations.

4) I will cultivate good relationships with the public health department’s partners, so as to create connections and learning opportunities to have available after I graduate.

So far, I have gotten the chance to connect with many of Fit NOLA’s partners at their spring forum. I have attended about 20 meetings, worked on multiple different databases, helped create a program that we are using to apply for a grant, and worked on updated our social media and calendars. The employees here listen to, use, and give me feedback on all of my ideas, which has been very rewarding. As these activities continue, I think I will definitely be able to accomplish all of my learning objectives by the end of the summer. I’ll be posting again soon, as my various projects continue to grow!

– Anna

Digitizing Food Access Information

Last week I started my internship with Development Services International, an NGO that focuses on analytics and mapping to address social issues. I am the Sustainable Urbanization intern for the summer, based in New Orleans.

My first map will consist of all of the food banks in New Orleans, providing easy access to information about where they are located and their hours. I’m excited for all the new skills that I’m going to learn this summer and that my internship will result in a tangible resource for lower income families.

My first foray into the organization was a meeting with a local farmer, David Young, in theLower Ninth Ward. David has 26 plots of farmland in the city, and shared his wealth of knowledge about growing in the area and dealing with logistical issues. I got a better sense of what providing fresh food for low-income residents really entails. David showed us around a few of his plots, including one with honey bees! I actually had one bee that kept following me down the street and wouldn’t leave me alone – I was glad to be wearing a hat with a net covering my face!




– Becca Greaney