Reflection – #5

My stint with the Learning for Life division of the Boy Scouts of America was a wonderful opportunity afforded to me. Prior to this summer, I would never have anticipated working with the Boy Scouts. However, an opportunity presented itself and I decided to pursue it, and I could not be happier with my decision.

I have been able to learn and experience an immense amount, more than I have withany employer before. I learned about the pseudo profit motive that exists within a non-profit organization and how the motive is different than that of a traditional business, but exists nevertheless. I learned about the importance of placing publications and databases under scrutiny in an effort to avoid wasting time. I also learned about interpersonal communication and the importance of it in the workplace. I gained skills interacting with the public as well, whether face-to- face or over the phone. I got a wide range of experience from my stint with the Boy Scouts of America, and I certainly enjoyed what I got to do.

The most enjoyable part of my internship was the wide range of activities I got to experience. I got to work on marketing maps, roster checks, phone calls, camps, and numerous more tasks. I was sometimes in the office, sometimes at a summer camp, sometimes at a school, and always enjoying my work. The people I got to experience were also a great benefit to my summer. From Denver Area Council employees to summer camp volunteers, I met and interacted with a wide range of people. I was grateful for this interaction, as it gave me irreplaceable experience working with others.

The greatest challenge I faced was not one that I had ever considered before. Staying busy was a surprising obstacle to encounter. My preference when facing a task is to continuously hammer away at said task, and to do so until I have completed it. I did this in many of my projects and completed them quickly, leaving vacant hours as a consequence. This forced me to find ways to occupy my day, so I tried to make these activities productive. I read about Denver Area Council programs, organized files on the server, and tried to do whatever was needed. This challenge taught me a valuable lesson that sometimes it is better to work slowly and not to worry over extreme promptness, and above all, that interaction is valuable, as is time for reflection and observation. I certainly will take time to interact and observe in the future and not worry so much about constant engagement in tedious tasks. This valuable lesson came as a result of my greatest challenge during employment, and that alone makes me quite grateful for my summer employment with the Boy Scouts of America.

Overall, I could not thank the Denver Area Council enough for this opportunity and experience. I have enjoyed it tremendously and am happy to have been able to encounter something I never would have anticipated. This work with non-profits has sparked a new interest, and perhaps even changed my career path.

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