For about a year now I’ve been gaining valuable work and life lessons as a web marketing intern at the New York State Energy Research & Development Authority (NYSERDA). This fall semester in particular, I’ve had to learn to work more independently at my internship and how to prioritize my time as a young adult with growing responsibilities. Prior to my time spent with NYSERDA I was naive about the culture and expectations of an intern. I thought my time would spent in excess of extremes; I would either be constantly busy or I would be constantly free with idle time. I instead found that the most fulfilling experience in a work setting is to be firmly grounded between busy and idle time – that there is nothing wrong with wanting to be a hardworking asset to a company, but organizations flourish with the openness of social connections.
The seniority of my time spent at NYSERDA and that I was one of the only interns within my department made me eligible to work independently on project tasks, collaborating with other NYSERDA employees outside of my department. When I first started, many of my responsibilities were from direct assignments of my supervisor or other employees in the web marketing team. As of the summer season to this current semester, my assignments have been directly assigned from staff all over, implying that my skills and competency are not without notice in this organization. Independent tasks gave me the experience to interact with personalities that I have never meet before, and also dealing with the uncertainty of content management system to perfect everything has made my time here worthwhile.
As a senior studying Information Science and Communications, I have spent my educational career partaking in small jobs or freelance work as web content manager. In those experiences, I have only work with small websites. When I first began my internship with NYSERDA, the management system was extremely different for a site with thousands of pages, layout designs, and content creators who all expected something different with they browsed the website. Needless to say, I thought I would become overwhelmed but my studies have taught me how to wear different hats so to speak. My experience in website development and marketing is what got me hired, but my knowledge about social/economical collaborations have been my hidden strength. I look forward to completing my internship for the remainder of my time as an undergraduate student and can honestly repeat the saying that “I wouldn’t trade this experience for anything else.”
Latoya Clarke is a senior at the University at Albany, current web marketing intern at New York State Energy Research & Development Authority (NYSERDA).