As taxing as it is, I truly love exercising. After a long (and rather sedentary) day at the office, there really is nothing better than breaking a sweat, moving your body, and exhausting yourself to the point of satisfaction.
Well, as my time in the program comes to a close, I have come to discover that my summer has been rather comparable to that of an extremely challenging workout. I started the program eager with anticipation, unsure of what my time would bring, but fairly certain my efforts would pay off in the end. As the weeks progressed, I became increasingly focused on form and output, working to improve my existing skills and hone new ones. Finally, at the fellowship’s conclusion, I find myself reflecting on my time with OANO and perfecting my final project, tired from my performance, but stronger as a result.
This summer has been a grueling workout, a plethora of highs, lows, and moments for growth. My summer project, which initially began as an unorganized collection of thoughts and ideas, has transformed into an innovative and revamped initiative for OANO’s Standards for Excellence program. The other summer fellows, who I first greeted awkwardly as strangers, have quickly become some of my closest professional confidants. My coworkers, terrifyingly intimidating in the beginning, are now my favorite faces to see in the morning. Lastly, my fellowship, once a temporary summer position, has now transformed into a part-time position with OANO in the fall (say hello to the organization’s newest Administrative Assistant!)
Through the ups and downs, I have been able to witness myself transform into a better version of me- one that is confident in my professional endeavors and eager for the days that have yet to come. Although the journey has not always been easy, the results have made it well worth the chase. After all, nothing worth having comes easy.