This summer internship experience has been one I will never forget. I was living in a new city that became like home. I met friends who became family. I was guided by mentors who changed my life. And most importantly, I grew to love/believe in myself and the importance of public service.
Before DC, I had never really gotten out of my comfort bubble. I stuck with the same people from the same organizations, I thought I had to know my exact career plan, and I never tried new things that scared me. However, this summer changed all of that!
I’m so grateful to LSA, CAPAL, and the USDA for allowing me to meet such incredible people, visit such memorable places, and learn so much about our country, its people and the ways I can contribute to the world. Without the help of all three of these organizations, I would have not been able to live in one of my favorite cities and get a full experience that included educational and social components.
Going into this, I never thought that I would fall in love with the city, the work I did and the people I met. However, I always tell everyone that it was so hard coming back home from DC. Yes, I had so much fun and that had a lot to do with it. More importantly, though, I learned so much. I don’t think I’ve ever been given the chance to have so many opportunities for hands on experience, networking and educational events.
My boss and supervisors entrusted me with tasks that were actually important and applicable to the skills I need in life/my career. I’m so glad that I was placed in an office where they knew I liked to keep busy. They made sure I was doing valuable work and helped make my experience in a new setting so amazing!
CAPAL provided me with so many contacts, educational opportunities, social events and so much more. I’m so grateful for the opportunity to connect with other Asian Americans around the world. I never knew much about Asian American issues until this past summer, and it has definitely made me a more informed individual.
I was surrounded by students who were activists on their campuses or who promoted social justice advancements. They are all such passionate individuals, and I have been inspired by so many of them.
Even though I do not have a solid plan for the future, I know that that’s okay. I’ve finally been able to accept that I will find what works for me and to just continue doing what I love. I’ve always cared too much about other’s opinions, but this has helped me build more confidence in myself. I’m so excited to start a new school year with this new mentality. My internship has (hopefully) turned me into a better person, with more experience and an even bigger passion for public service!
DC has opened my eyes to so much history and so many opportunities! I cannot wait to go back sometime in the future!