The high school I attend is a small, rigorous college preparatory charter school located in Durango, Colorado, that differs from a traditional high school in many ways. As part of the AHS curriculum, juniors take part in a unique program which we refer to as LINK: Leading INTERNSHIPS for New Knowledge. This is a 3-week internship where students gain workforce experience in the careers of their choice.
Anticipation and prepaRATION
For my LINK anticipation and preparation I originally looked for an internship in the field of clothing design, although my greater interest is in business. I was hoping to find a LINK that is out of town, and would allow me to travel and experience living in other parts of the country. I contacted 10-15 different businesses seeking a mentor. Despite my efforts I couldn’t find anything in the field I originally sought after, or a LINK that allowed me to travel. I heard several no’s from every company I originally applied for. Nervous and distraught, I began reaching out to local businesses that would offer me the LINK experience I was looking for. With just weeks until LINK, I still hadn’t found my internship. I met with our schools internship advisor, and she directed me to a local business that matched exactly the workforce experience I was seeking. I did some research, then reached out to them about possibly doing my internship there; shortly after, I had finally landed myself an internship.
I have always been a very business savvy person. For years I have known that my career choices would most likely be business oriented. Going into LINK I already had 6+ years of graphic design experience. During LINK some skills that I developed task management, keeping myself on task was difficult, but I learned how to break up my time to include all of the projects I was working on. I learned a lot about the managerial and promotional side of business and marketing. The skills I developed during this LINK will help me with my future because in the real life work force I won’t have someone watching my productivity, I will be on my own and my productivity will be my own responsibility. Some of the challenges I faced during LINK were my timeliness, not always having my mentor to support and motivate me, and finding rides to and from LINK. I wasn’t actually that important to the business during LINK, as the business is designed to function on it’s own, without the presence of staff/interns. The internship helped me plan my next steps for college by helping me narrow down what exactly that it is I want to do in the future.
For my LINK I chose to work for a business called R Space, R Space is a coworking space owned by the Rochester. For those of you who are unfamiliar with coworking spaces; a coworking space is a space that allows people who work from home, people who need part time office space, people who need access to office amenities, and those who are on vacation away from the office, and need a space to work from. R Space offers several amenities, including the fastest wifi in town, private offices for meetings and business calls, board rooms for corporate meetings, and work spaces for R Space members to socialize and cowork together.
For my LINK project I helped with many different small projects, such as assisting R Space's web designer/programmer Chris develop their website, or helping with taking photography of the space for their website. I helped with creating visual designs for promotional use, or informational signs for customers. I also helped by working on marketplace research for R Space; this aforementioned research consisted of compiling a spreadsheet of other coworking spaces with similar business models. In this spreadsheet, I compiled on each company starting with their name, their address, their website link, and data on the services they offer. I did this by finding information about them on the internet.