Rosemarie Fettig ’20: American Philosophical Society

Name: Rosemarie Fettig
Class Year: 2020
Major: English
Hometown: Potomac, Md.

Internship Organization: American Philosophical Society
Job Title: Curatorial Research Intern
Location: Philadelphia


What’s happening at your internship?

As a Curatorial Research Intern, I spend most of my time reading! At the APS Museum, summers are dedicated to preparing for the next year’s exhibition, so the curatorial team starts off reading secondary source material about the exhibition topic — our exhibition is about Benjamin Franklin and science — before turning to primary sources and objects to include in the exhibition. When I’m not reading in my office, I’m in the APS Library’s reading room, consulting books and manuscripts from the archives. My specific project has been researching Ben Franklin’s experiments and inventions with electricity, which there’s certainly no shortage of material on! I’ve read letters between Franklin and his philosophical peers, gone through all of the Library’s 13 copies of his book, Experiments and Observations on Electricity, and deciphered some slightly cryptic scientific illustrations, all to help our two Curatorial Fellows develop the story they want our exhibition to tell and gather material for object labels and guide scripts.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I’m hoping to pursue museum work after graduation, and I knew that this internship would give me valuable experience in the field. While I’ve already done some museum work — I’m a Special Collections Assistant at Bryn Mawr and I interned in the Registrar’s Office of the Smithsonian American Art Museum last summer — I’ve never done curatorial work before, so I was eager to broaden my experiences and gain a more well-rounded understanding of all the different subfields of museum work!

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

As cheesy as this might sound, my favorite part of my internship is the people! Working at a smaller institution means that there’s a lot of communication and cooperation between different departments, so everyone knows what everyone else is working on and is constantly learning from each other. For me, this means I get to learn more about how the museum as a whole functions and develop a new appreciation for all the different things museum staff do!

What is something you have learned from your internship that you didn’t expect?

One of the best parts of my internship is the fact that I learn something new every day, since early American history and the history of science were both subjects that I didn’t know a whole lot about before I started this position. My personal favorite fact: mid 18th-century scientists were fascinated by a fish called the torpedo fish, a type of ray that gives off a shock like an electric eel, and their obsessive study of this fish eventually led to the development of early electroshock therapy and the invention of the battery!

Rania Dali ’22: Prevention Point Philadelphia

Name: Rania Dali
Class Year: 2022
Major: Economics
Hometown: Houston, Texas

Internship Organization: Prevention Point Philadelphia
Job Title: Community Outreach, Development, and Education Intern
Location: Philadelphia

What’s happening at your internship?

Prevention Point is a public health organization that seeks to improve access to medical services and promote empowerment and safety to the community of Kensington, Philadelphia, which is largely affected by drug use and poverty. Therefore, every day my tasks change depending on the needs of our participants and my ability to cater to their needs.

Why did you apply for this internship? What is something you have learned from your internship that you didn’t expect?

I applied to intern with Prevention Point Philadelphia because I wanted to work with a public health organization that is very integrated in the community that it serves, and when a friend at Bryn Mawr who interned with PPP last summer told me about her experience, it seemed perfect. PPP is in the heart of Kensington, which makes it easily accessible for people in need of syringe services, wound care, or just a hot meal. Now the question that comes up is: Why is an organization serving a community affected by drug use handing out free syringes on a weekly basis? This is called a harm reduction approach. Harm reduction aims to reduce the harm associated with drug use, meaning reducing the amount of overdose deaths and HIV/Hepatitis cases. Overcoming addiction is a battle and recovery is not a thought everyone has, therefore, many continue to use drugs no matter whether they have access to new syringes or not. Handing out new syringes means fewer people sharing their used syringes and fewer HIV/Hepatitis cases. Since PPP opened 27 years ago, it has expanded its services to include case management, HIV/Hepatitis testing, mail service, medically assisted treatment, shelter and more. As a result, I learned a lot about harm reduction as a service and practice. More importantly, I found ways to connect it to my major by exploring the cost effectiveness of PPP as a harm reduction program since it opened its doors and the ratio between cost of HIV cases prevented vs. the cost of syringes given out.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

My favorite part of interning at Prevention Point has been working with my team and interacting with the participants. My team is very small so I can always get immediate feedback on my work and ask questions. Since I work as an outreach and engagement intern, a lot of my work serves to engage the community and allow the participants to voice their needs and concerns. Recently, I have been doing presentations about HIV medications and chronic homelessness to our participants in the drop-in area and they’re very responsive. They ask questions and provide me with feedback that I can use to better cater to their needs. For my most recent project, I filmed a guidelines video for our staff and participants and once I played it in the drop-ins, the participants were so excited to see familiar faces on the screen and they clapped at the end, which made me realize the impact I’m having on the community even if it means making one person smile.

Odinaka Oranekwu ’20: Generation Teach

Name: Odinaka Oranekwu
Class Year: 2020
Major: Mathematics
Hometown: Lynn, Mass.

Internship Organization: Generation Teach
Job Title: Teaching Fellow
Location: Roslindale, Mass.

What’s happening at your internship?

My internship is a teaching preparation program that targets Boston Public Schools students who are primarily black and brown students who are more prone to being subjected to the summer slide. I was a lead math teacher for fifth grade students who are currently enrolled in BPS. I taught two sections of about 10 students each. I also taught an elective of basketball. I taught two sections of basketball of about 17 students each from fifth through eighth grade. I was also a club leader of about 25 students varying from fifth through eighth. As a club leader, we organized free time to wind down the school/camp day and give students the opportunity to make connections with the other kids.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I applied for this internship because I wanted to do something that impacts a group of people. Being an underprivileged black girl from Boston, I understand the worth and value of a black/brown teacher in my life trajectory. I wanted the opportunity to be that for kids. Additionally, as I’ve changed my major to mathematics this past school year, I’ve been curious as to what I’d want to do with a mathematics degree. Teaching has crossed my mind several times and I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to decide if I could possibly make a career in education.

Can you give us three adjectives and three nouns that describe your internship experience?

Adjectives: Challenging, Fulfilling, Growth
Nouns: Mentorship, Network, Dedication

What is most rewarding about your internship?

The most rewarding aspect of my internship was the kids. The kids honestly made the hard days easier. The relationships I built with a lot of the kids really will stick with me for a while. I knew I enjoyed being with the kids, but when I received notes and artwork from my students my heart nearly exploded. There is no greater feeling than knowing you’re making an impact in someone’s life, and that is what I felt throughout the summer.

Natasha Porter ’20: PennEnvironment

Name: Natasha Porter
Class Year: 2020
Major: Political Science
Hometown: London, England

Internship Organization: PennEnvironment
Job Title: Clean Water and Conservation Intern
Location: Philadelphia

What’s happening at your internship?

This summer I am working with PennEnvironment, a statewide environmental advocacy group focused on protecting the environment in Pennsylvania through grassroots organizing, advocacy, and lobbying state officials. I am a Clean Water and Conservation Intern and am working on creating on advocating for progressive environmental policies throughout the state. In particular, I am working on the “Get the Lead Out” campaign which aims to pass legislation that requires mandatory testing for lead in all public schools in Pennsylvania and treatment to decontaminate drinking water in schools. Through working on this campaign, I have written opinion pieces on the issue that have been published in several local newspapers to raise public awareness and create support for this important legislation. I have learned about the political research and targeting that goes in to advocacy work and creating support for a bill moving through the state legislature.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I appreciated how this internship combined several different areas — environmental policy, advocacy, legal and political action, and grassroots organizing. The opportunity to learn about all of these different areas and skills at the same time seemed very enticing. It has definitely allowed me to develop skills and knowledge in a range of interrelated areas and enhanced my understanding of local and state governments and how social movements can impact policy on a subnational scale.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

This summer, I’ve had the opportunity to shadow lobbyists and advocates and therefore have been able to listen in on calls and attend meetings with legislators. These meetings allowed me to have greater insight into the conversations that often happen behind closed doors that are fundamental to the policy-making process. Being able to gain further insight into the specific reasons why some laws pass and some don’t, and why some laws that pass are not as progressive as they were at is inception has been very eye-opening in understanding the policy-making process.

Can you give us three adjectives and three nouns that describe your internship experience?

Nouns: Fresh and Clean Water. Activism. Community.
Adjectives: Renewing. Refreshing. Important.

Michelle Scuzzarella ’21: Magee-Womens Research Institute and Foundation

Name: Michelle Scuzzarella
Class Year: Rising Junior
Major: Biology
Hometown: Lynn, Mass.

Internship Organization: Magee-Womens Research Institute and Foundation
Job Title: Research Intern
Location: Pittsburgh

What’s happening at your internship?

The Yanowitz lab focuses on the field of reproductive biology and uses Caenorhabditis elegans as a model organism to conduct this work. I’m currently working on two projects relating to the process of meiosis. One project has to do with a mutation in a protein that normally creates double-strand breaks in chromosomes that are needed for cross-over events. Without a cross-over event, the chromosomes are not able to segregate properly into their sperm or egg cells, which means that these cells are unable to create viable offspring. However there sometimes appear to be cross-over events in these mutants, so I’m testing to see what may be causing these apparent cross-over events to occur. In another smaller project, I’m trying to determine when a protein, which is important in the process of meiosis, is produced during the life cycle of C. elegans.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I applied for this internship because I have a love for biology. After taking biology courses throughout my academic career, I was beyond ready to be in a position where I would be doing real biology. Working in a lab setting would be the perfect thing to do to exercise some of the skills I’ve already learned in lab courses, while also gaining so many new skills and a ton of invaluable experience. On top of all of this, I would be working on a project that could possibly have real world applications one day. I think most STEM majors dream of the day that the things they learn and put work into actually have real world applications — I know I do.

Living in a new city? What has that experience been like for you?

This experience has definitely had its ups and downs, but so far, it’s been a great experience. It’s been difficult to be away from my friends and some of my favorite places at home for the summer, but I think this experience will be worth it. It has also been very difficult living in a completely new city, but I’ve had a lot of help getting to know the city from a fellow Bryn Mawr student and her family. This experience has also led to me becoming much more independent and it has helped me learn how to navigate a big city. I’ve really enjoyed this experience so far because it has helped me see what I’m capable of.

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced at your internship?

I think that the biggest challenge I’ve faced so far has been working with the C. elegans. C. elegans are microscopic nematodes that can just barely be seen at their largest without a microscope. In order to move the worms to their desired destination, we have to look through a microscope and use an instrument called a pick to pick them up and leave them where they’re needed. When I first started out, the worms more often than not did not safely make it to their destination. I’ve also had to learn how to dissect the worms, and believe me, that’s just as hard as it sounds. While looking under a microscope, I have to use a small and very sharp needle to cut the worms in a specific spot so that we can expose and examine their germline under a special type of microscope. Thanks to my clumsy nature and shaky hands, working with C. elegans has been incredibly tedious and exhausting, but also a fantastic exercise in patience.

María del Pilar Ferreira Romero ’21: Fundación Tierra de Esperanza

Name: María del Pilar Ferreira Romero
Class Year: 2021
Major: International Studies
Hometown: Lambaré, Paraguay

Internship Organization: Fundación Tierra de Esperanza
Job Title: Intern at Dirección de Investigación, Desarrollo e Innovación
Location: Concepción, Chile.

María del Pilar Ferreira Romero

What’s happening at your internship?

I am an intern at the Dirección de Investigación, Desarrollo e Innovación (DIDI), or Research Development and Innovation Direction in English. This department of Fundacion Tierra de Esperanza is in charge of managing and sharing data. As an intern, I am working on creating a systematization guideline that will allow the Fundación to keep a record of all the experiences from their projects. In this way, good practices that worked for one project could be applied to other projects.

Additionally, I am also learning about the different projects that the Fundación has in four main areas: Education, Substance Abuse, Juvenile Justice, and Human Rights. The work the Fundacion does in Chile is impressive and I am eager to keep learning in the weeks that I have left!

Why did you apply for this internship?

One day, I received an email with a new internship that was going to take place in Chile with an organization that works with children. It was a pilot program created by the Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research and Fundación Tierra de Esperanza for undergraduates and graduates students. When I read about the work that the Fundación does in Chile, I knew that it would be the place where I could learn about the use of data for the creation of programs that address pressing issues in society. Furthermore, this pilot program appeared as a unique opportunity to work in a city and a country that would challenge me and expose me to different realities in the international context.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

My favorite part so far has been the people at the Fundacion. Everyone received me with arms wide open and with a desire to teach and share with me all the knowledge they have. They have been extremely helpful during my immersion into the Fundacion to understand the acronyms, programs, and many other things. Moreover, they are also showing me the best of Chile. Everyone at the Fundación tells me what I have to visit, what dishes I have to try, and have even invited me to some cultural events in the cosmopolitan city that Concepción is. They have all been really friendly and accessible to teach me things that I have to learn, and to make sure that I have the very best time here in Chile.





Living in a new city? What has that experience been like for you?

Living in a new city has been fun and entertaining. I am living in a hotel, which means that I have all the commodities that it offers and can eat out almost every day. Concepción is a walkable city, and my hotel is in downtown. Therefore, I can walk almost everywhere.
The city of Concepcion has many museums, theaters, and other cultural places that I have yet to visit. There is so much history in this city and I am learning something every day. There are so many places to know here in Concepcion, and in the surrounding cities. Furthermore, the landscapes that it offers are also delightful. During my time here, I have seen some marvelous sunsets that decorate the beautiful hills that Concepcion has. I am excited to keep exploring and learning more about this historical city!



Edith Lorna Jepkirui ’21: To Our Children’s Future With Health and Together for West Philadelphia

Name: Edith Lorna Jepkirui
Class Year: 2021
Major: Mathematics
Hometown: Eldoret, Kenya

Internship Organization: To Our Children’s Future With Health (TOCFWH) and Together for West Philadelphia
Job Title: Student intern
Location: Saint Joseph’s University and Overbrook High School (West Philadelphia)

Going into the summer, I knew that I wanted to do an internship related to social justice. More specifically, I wanted to work with African and Caribbean immigrant populations. I had been involved in a lot of social justice-related activities on campus and I was looking to get a feel of social justice work outside campus, with a population that I cared about. Midway through contacting the organizations that I was interested in working with, I was introduced to Dr. Robin Foster-Drain. Dr. Foster-Drain was putting together a research project on West Philadelphia involving students from colleges in the area including the University of Pennsylvania, Saint Joseph’s University, Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, and Cheyney. The students would conduct a literature review on West Philadelphia. Despite the project being heavily related to public health, I became interested in it.

Together with Nisha, a second-year student at PCOM, I spent every Monday and Wednesday at Saint Joseph’s University researching the 19131 zip code of West Philadelphia. We collected census data, tracked changes in demographics, looked at social determinants of health, and studied the history of the community. We wrote about our findings in a 2-to-3-page writeup that we submitted every Friday. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we reported to our community immersion sites, where we were supposed to interact with the community and get a firsthand impression of our zip codes. I was placed at Overbrook High School, where I was a math tutor for the To Our Children’s Future With Health’s Workforce Readiness program for high school students. The Workforce Readiness Program is an after-school initiative by Dr. Foster-Drain’s community-based organization (TOCFWH), which focuses on teaching career and workforce development, customer service and sales, electrical, IT and math and literacy. On Fridays, we went to Lankenau Hospital for our reflection sessions. Dr.  Foster-Drain brought in different speakers working in public health-related fields every Friday. Overall, Together for West Philadelphia had about 15 students in different zip codes in West Philadelphia conducting research and interacting with the community. The result of the project would be a document that the community would be proud to read.

There are several things that I enjoyed about this internship. First, my research partner and I were at different educational levels, yet we worked together and complemented each other’s strengths perfectly. Nisha was a medical student and she was very comfortable with anything public health related, while I am a math major who was comfortable around demographic statistics and census data. I also enjoyed working with the Workforce Readiness Program at Overbrook High School as a math tutor. My math sessions were meant to supplement the electrical class lessons as well as to make math more practical and real-life. I worked with two students at a time for 30-to-45 minutes. During my first week at the program, I handed out diagnostic tests that I had tailored to different ability levels. I then intentionally designed unconventional math sessions where we did math readings, a math budget project, and interactive math games. I wanted the math classes to be a welcome break from the electrical class. The students in my class would make very random comments about their experience, or lack thereof, with money. We talked about taxes, credit card debt, student loans, choosing a living space, and the gender wage gap, among other money-related topics. The resources that I put together for the mathematics sessions this summer will be used during TOCFWH’s after-school program during the school year.

Every Tuesday and Thursday, I went to talks by guest speakers, invited to Overbrook High School by Ms. Intisar, who was one of the camp counselors. The speakers were self-made entrepreneurs and business owners from 19131. My greatest take away from those afternoon sessions was that despite the cards that the speakers had been dealt with in life, they still worked hard to make something of themselves. It did not matter whether someone they loved was killed or whether their parents were on drugs. The afternoon talks felt like conversations with an older brother or sister who understood the enormous potential that all the high school kids had. I appreciated how invested the staff at Overbrook High School was in the students’ success in life.

Hikma Salhe ’20: Together For West Philadelphia

Name: Hikma Salhe
Class Year: 2020
Major: Psychology
Hometown: Philadelphia

Internship Organization: Together For West Philadelphia
Job Title: Summer student researcher
Research Site: Lankenau Hospital
Community Immersion Site: Lewis Cassidy Elementary Plus School

What’s happening at your internship?

I have spent this summer working as a summer student researcher at Together for West Philadelphia, a nonprofit organization. Their main goal is to provide a holistic approach in servicing the public health issues that affect the west Philadelphia area by partnering with Main Line Health. This initiative is incredibly important as it works toward resolving the disconnection between the communities that live on either side of City Ave., both in their social and health realms.

Why did you apply for this internship?

As a rising senior, I knew that I wanted to spend my summer working with an organization in a field of my interest. TOCFWH and TFWP are not only in the public health field but they also serve a community and demographic that sits close to my heart. As a West Philadelphia native, I’m aware of the many issues and troubles that strike the area. However, through this experience I was exposed to an ever deeper look at the issues (e.g. statistics, person-to-person interactions, etc.).

What has been the biggest challenge you have faced at your internship?

A huge part of my internship was centered around the reports we wrote and submitted every week about our specific zip codes. Each week there was a different category of assessment (e.g. qualitative assessment, zip code history, etc.) that we had to research. I very quickly found that it is incredibly easy to find heartbreaking statistics and facts that fit the narrative that has been built around marginalized communities. However, I knew that the aim of this project wasn’t to weave a similar story, but instead it was to create a community narrative that would uplift the community while still addressing pressing issues. Even though it was difficult to reframe how I approached the statistics, it was an incredible learning experience for me academically and mentally.

Was this internship what you expected it to be?

This internship was everything and more! I was a little hesitant going into it; I just didn’t know what to expect. However, it was the most rewarding experience I have ever gotten the privilege to be apart of.

Elizabeth Todd ’21: The Global Fund for Children

Name: Elizabeth Todd
Class Year: 2021
Major: Anthropology
Hometown: Columbus, Ga.

Internship Organization: The Global Fund for Children
Job Title: Programs Intern
Location: Washington, D.C.

What’s happening at your internship?

I’ve done a multitude of different projects, but am currently finishing up the East Africa Scoping document that I have been working on all summer. I’ve helped write a youth advocacy strategy, made recommendations for partner selections, and helped craft guidelines for the Youth Leadership Council, as well as participated in SWOT analyses and training for OCA and ONA.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I wanted to get a different perspective on nonprofit work that was separate from my hands-on work. Working at an INGO that primarily functions as a funding body was an experience I was specifically interested in. I also wanted an office experiment to test out whether I can flourish in that kind of environment. I have a passion for nonprofit work, and this opportunity jumped out at me immediately.

Can you talk about the skills you are learning and why they are important to you?

Surviving the 9-5 workday was something I wanted to learn how to navigate, and testing out what worked and was doesn’t for myself is a skill that I really hoped I could cultivate. Honing my research skills will continue to serve me in my academic career as well as in my professional path. A large majority of my work has been writing, which I have historically considered one of my strengths. I have learned a new way to structure reports, and learned how to construct different types of resources, which has also been valuable. I have always been interested in grant making, so gaining a greater familiarity with that software and how it functions quashed a longtime curiosity of mine.

Was this internship what you expected it to be?

This experience was not at all what I expected it to be, but in a good way. I expected to get coffee, make copies, and do all the grunt work that no one else wanted, which is the exact opposite of how my summer has gone. Starting with my first project, I was directly integrated into decision-making processes and got to familiarize myself with new grant making software. I had much more freedom and autonomy surrounding my work than I was expecting. This company also functions in an open office setup, which contributed to a really relaxed feel to the workday that I was not expecting. I’ve worked on a variety of different assignments in more than one focus area, which I did not expect to be privy to. The people that work here have been intensely welcoming, and while I didn’t expect the staff of a nonprofit to be cold, I didn’t expect how open and friendly everyone would be.

Vinty (Liwen) Guo ’20: LITS at Bryn Mawr College

Name: Vinty (Liwen) Guo
Class Year: 2020
Major: Computer Science and Math
Hometown: Guangzhou, China

Internship Organization: LITS at BMC
Job Title: Digital Technology Intern
Location: Canaday Library

What’s happening at your internship?

My internship job involves an indigenous language revitalization project and my part of the job is to help customize the views of its language learning Drupal website, debug the PHP codes used in the website, and analyze the language text data in R in order to visualize the patterns/trends of the data. So, basically, I’m on the technical support side to move this project forward. And obviously, most of my work is done on a computer.

Why did you apply for this internship?

I heard about this internship from an upperclass student who was in the same position as I am right now in the previous year and I got curious. Therefore, I collected some information about the LITS internship program and realized that LITS interns usually receive tasks from alumni, faculty, and staff members within the Tri-Co. And, they often engage in clients’ projects, helping their “clients” move the project forward by applying what they have learned at school to the workplace. I was intrigued by the idea of a group of people helping the clients in need with the projects that they value and have put so much effort in.

What has been your favorite part of this internship?

My favorite part of this internship has always been the interaction with my colleagues, clients, advisors and my supervisors who have been kindly trying their best to help me. For the project that we interns have been working on, communication involving scholars and technicians across the country plays an important role throughout the entire process. We have weekly check-in meetings, teleconference with our technician based in California and client based in New York City, and have taken several trips to Swarthmore College to meet with a linguistics professor for his expertise in analyzing language. This diverse working environment has been motivating and keeping me excited about my work.

What is most rewarding about your internship?

The most rewarding part about my internship is that my client, a linguistics scholar, is satisfied with and excited about the result of our work. This gives me the feeling that what we have done and what we are doing right now is important and meaningful to some people, and they will use the tool that we engaged in building for educational purposes. When our client said that he had been waiting for this moment for almost 20 years, it feels extremely rewarding.