Jeremiah's Internship Experience

March 08, 2016

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I had the opportunity to be an intern for the Student Volunteer Center during the winter quarter of my first year here at UCSC. As an intern, I did various jobs around the office that helped the directors and the Student Volunteer Center as a whole, in addition to some non-profit organizations. As an intern, I was assigned with confirming/updating the contact information of 20 non-profit organizations in and around Santa Cruz. By doing this, student volunteers can be efficiently directed to organizations they would like to learn more about. We were also given the tasks of designing posters for events and posting them around campus, in addition to posting flyers every week. This way, the Student Volunteer Center could get their news out to the students on campus, whether the information be from the SVC or various organizations.

One huge task I had as an intern for the Student Volunteer Center was to plan and put on a fundraiser for a non-profit organization of my choice. Working with my two co-interns, we decided to put on a fundraiser for an organization called Above the Line. Above the Line is a great non-profit organization that works with foster children. They cater to their personal, academic, and economic needs and decide help them either connect with their biological family (if deemed safe) or find a new, loving family. My co-interns and I had to scratch out our original fundraiser idea as it brought concerns for the Student Volunteer Center. After researching fun fundraising ideas and roaming around around Pinterest, we came up with the idea to bake and sell cake pops. After finalizing our plans, my co-interns and I slaved away for about 10 hours which resulted in us baking 300 cake pops (crazy, I know). The day after, we set up a table at the Quarry Plaza and sold them for $1 each. We unfortunately did not sell all of our cake pops but made a little over $100. This amount in itself is still a great total.

The fundraiser taught me quite a few things. Baking 300 cake pops was a very tiring and long process. Despite that, this fundraiser is still small compared to what non-profit organizations do frequently. Our fundraiser really opened my eyes to all the hard work and effort organization put into raising money to help others, at a cost that does not benefit them physically nor financially. It is so crazy to think that so many people and organizations are so dedicated in helping others. I really respect non-profit organizations for everything they have already done and what they will accomplish in the future.

This internship was a pretty great experience. It has really taught me the importance of communication, teamwork, time management, and organization. I am leaving with new skills and a better mindset and knowledge of professionalism.