When I think back to the first day of my CIRI internship, I must admit I was feeling a little nervous. Within minutes of walking in the door, however, my nerves turned to excitement as I attended orientation and acquainted myself with the other summer interns and my co-workers.
Now, over a month into my internship, I can say I feel right at home. I am continuing to learn new skills every day. CIRI provides many learning experiences for its interns and I feel like a sponge, soaking it all in. The other interns and I have attended multiple informational workshops and heard from important figures in the Alaska Native community, such as author, educator and politician Willie Hensley. Most recently, we visited the Alaska Native Heritage Center where we explored our shared culture and heritage and addressed some of the issues facing Alaska Native youth. These are the types of experiences I would not be able to find anywhere else.
In addition to acquiring new skills through my internship, I am learning a lot from the other interns. KC Chickalusion, CIRI’s Business Development intern, is always working on an important project and I love picking his brain. Autumn Olson, CIRI’s Human Resources intern, is also a great person to know.
We have worked on several projects together, such as an employee recognition wall. CIRI’s corporate values of Excellence, Honor, Mission Driven, Respect and Unity shine through in KC and Autumn’s work.
I’ve had a blast exploring Alaska and I am disappointed I’m only here for another month. Luckily, I still have enough time for a few more adventures! I have already seen much more of this beautiful state than I ever planned, from Matanuska Glacier to Fire Island. Both professionally and personally, my CIRI internship has made 2017 a summer to remember.
Until next time,