It is sad to say my summer internship is coming to an end with the Branching Out Program. It is hard to believe 10 weeks have flown by faster than a roller-coaster ride. I am very thank you for this internship because I was chosen to be part of such a great educational program that gives young college students the opportunities to explore career goals. I have learned that there are many National Parks in the United States and I had the chance to see many of them and work at some of them. For example, I never knew Eleanor Roosevelt had her own National Park and she was such an important figure as a woman! I also learned to take care of a formal garden at Adams National Historical Site and learned the Adams family history. The staffs and Bob were so kind and were willing to always help us. Many historical parks try to preserve the history of its locations by not changing its original structure of the historical sites. The types of experiences and skills I have gained are how to work in a team, to be a leader to the younger youths, to maintain a garden, learned to use new tools and learned new techniques. Also, I learned how to do a plant healthcare project by researching on boxwoods and peonies. I learned to identify the diseases the plants face and how they can be prevented in the future. I have a typed up plant healthcare report for the park to use.
The Branching Out Program experience has changed me this summer by showing me that working for the National Park Service can be fun and you do not have to work at an office building all your life. You can do both by working with nature and enjoy what you do. My park-based internship has influenced me to go explore other jobs in the national parks as an intern and just go take the opportunities to go explore while you are young and enjoy the outdoors. Hopefully next summer, I can be an intern again by working at Boston Harbor Islands, volunteering at community gardens around Boston areas, maybe even apply with the SCA program to work at other states. It is uncertain of where I might end up next summer but, I hope it involves the outdoor.