Well, this is it.
My time as a Columbus Foundation Fellow has officially come to an end, and with that, I think it’s only fair that I reflect a bit on my experiences, in the form of a little list:
- Don’t be afraid to take on more responsibilities. As an intern, it was difficult for me to find my place within an already tight-knit workplace. But the more people I reached out to, the more friendly faces I created around me, and the more diverse experiences I gained. Asking for more work felt awkward at first, but paid off a thousandfold in the end. If you’re a future Fellow and you’re reading this post–DON’T FEEL BAD ABOUT ASKING FOR MORE WORK!
- Enjoy the journey. As a rising junior at Ohio State, I’d be the first to admit that I often get very caught up in thinking about “what’s next?!” I often find myself trying to figure out how to best check all the figurative boxes in my life. But this summer, I realized the importance of just taking a step back to really enjoy all the small amazing moments that occur every day. It makes you feel way more satisfied if you focus on what makes you happy each day rather than worrying about what you’ll be doing tomorrow, or how you’ll fix that issue that might pop up in a few weeks.
- Learn as many new things as you can. Before this summer, I was the friend who calls you when you’re studying at the library because I can’t figure out how to work the TV remote. Let’s just say that technology is… often not my friend. But this summer, I spent my time utterly surrounded by technology, conjuring up spreadsheets and working with Excel more than I ever thought possible. And it was FUN! Stepping out of my comfort zone made me learn that I actually do have skills in the computer realm, and I’m excited to pursue these more in the future.
- Be nice. One of KIPP’s most famous mottoes is “Work Hard. Be Nice.” While this is a great set of phrases to instill in young students, I think it’s also just a great mantra for everyone in life. Not only should you always give things your best try, but you should also focus on being a good person. It’s an invaluable trait to have in the workplace and just as a human being. And it absolutely shapes the culture at KIPP, where each person is both hardworking and kind, and the type of person you just want to be around.
I can’t believe the fellowship has ended, and I am so grateful to have had this opportunity. Thank you so much to both the Columbus Foundation and KIPP Columbus for being incredibly welcoming, kind, and wonderful mentors, as well as to my fellow Fellows, a truly remarkable and inspiring set of women.
(Pictured below, some Faces of the Fellows from our final luncheon: Anna, Kerigan, myself, Katie, and Kathleen.)