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Intern Spotlight: Emily Elam

image of emily elam a soche intern
Emily Elam, SOCHE Intern

1.  Where are you currently interning and what are you doing?
I am currently interning with Camps Rock, Inc., a business that provides a free website where organizations can list their summer camps for kids, and parents can search for them. As an intern, I am facilitating the growth of the collection of summer camp organizations on the site through research, and beginning the process of contacting them so that they can be made aware of our services. Another part of my position has been testing the site itself for bugs and errors and providing feedback on how its content could be streamlined.

2. How is it helping you reach your career goals?
This internship has been a great opportunity for me to expand my work experience. A career in research was not one that I had considered before but this position has proved to suit my skills and my lifestyle. It has also been exciting to contribute to a growing business that has simplified the search for fulfilling and enriching youth programs throughout the US and Canada (so far), much like the ones that helped me grow in my teens.

3. Do you plan on staying in the Dayton region?
I have recently moved to Southeastern, OH to study Agroecology at Hocking College, and have fallen in love with the environment here and plan to stay near it. However, I grew up in Dayton and my family still resides there, and so I do, and will, return frequently to visit. Dayton is my hometown, and I have many fond memories there.

4. Tell me a little bit about what you’ve learned throughout the course of the internship.
Throughout this internship, the research process has familiarized me with the bounty of information on the internet, and I have discovered clever ways of seeking it out and organizing it to serve a specific purpose. I have also become familiar with the vastness of youth opportunities in the arts, sciences and athletics throughout our country and beyond, which has further interested me in supporting such an important means of education and entertainment.

5. Tell me about how SOCHE has helped you find the internship placement (especially during COVID).
This is actually my second internship with SOCHE, and so I am particularly thankful for their part in providing me with work opportunities when I really needed them. It has been difficult for everyone seeking jobs since the beginning of the pandemic, and as a student in a rural area, I have had trouble finding work that suits my needs. My internship with Camps Rock, Inc. was not one that I would have sought outright as it is much different from what I am studying. However, it allowed me to work from home and on a flexible schedule, both of which are very important to me at this time. On top of being convenient, this internship has given me a broader insight into my abilities and ultimate career goals. So, thank you SOCHE!

6. Is your internship online or a blend of both and is that working well?
As I mentioned, my internship is completely online and it really suits my lifestyle! I have not had a work-from-home position before and it has encouraged me to look for more long-term positions like it.

7. Why do you think it helps to learn on the job?
I am a visual learner, which I believe comes hand-in-hand with being a person who learns best by participating. By learning on the job, as I have in this internship, my understanding of the field of work expands far beyond my preconceptions of it. As an artistic person who likes to work outside and with her hands, I would have never thought that I might be suited to a stay-at-home, internet-based position if I had not had this opportunity.

8. What have you been able to accomplish so far at your internship?
In the short time I have been interning, I have collected the contact information for a few thousand organizations that provide summer camps for youth in the larger cities of New York, Pennsylvania, Arkansas, and now Canada. It is hardly the tip of the iceberg but it was no small feat to accomplish. As a result, the Camps Rock, Inc. site with be able to provide a service to thousands more organizations and parents and I am pleased that I’ve been able to contribute to that. I have also helped to enhancement the site itself by testing its navigability and suggesting solutions to its organization.

The Intern Spotlight Series are interviews conducted with current and past SOCHE Interns, discussing the value of their on-the-job experience at their internship.
If you are interested in hiring an intern, contact Patty Buddelmeyer at patty.buddelmeyer@soche.org or (937) 258-8890.
If you are interested in applying for a SOCHE Internship, go to www.socheintern.org.

Councils & Committees

SOCHE is dedicated to advancing higher education through active collaboration, resource and knowledge building, and effective professional development programs. To accomplish this, SOCHE administers 16 active Councils and Committees. The purpose of a SOCHE Council or Committee is to provide an opportunity for representatives from higher education to be a resource for one another, share information and best practices, identify common challenges, and, ultimately, broaden awareness of the resources, services, and activities in higher education. SOCHE is also dependent upon the Councils and Committees for substantial input on annual professional development programs.

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