By Staff Writer Kylie Cooper.
Amidst the many internship opportunities offered, one in a school district may not immediately come to mind.
Yet, through their internships in the New Bedford Public Schools system, two UMass Dartmouth students have been able to closely interact with the local community while gaining professional experience.
Allison Goodwin ‘20, English (Communication), and Samantha Perry ‘19, English (Literature and Criticism), are interning this semester within the New Bedford Public Schools Superintendent Office.
As interns, they write press releases and are able to go to the elementary, middle, and high schools to cover events.
“We’ve been [covering] anything positive going on in the schools,” said Perry, who recently attended an event in which second graders presented projects they’d made.
Some of Goodwin and Perry’s press releases have been picked up by local media, as well. The Standard Times wrote about developments in New Bedford High School’s goal to start a vocational business technologies program. The original press release had been written by Goodwin.
The New Bedford Guide also wrote an article about New Bedford High School’s JROTC ceremony held at the end of March because of a press release Perry wrote.
“The faculty and the administration are all really doing the best they can to help the children succeed in life,” said Goodwin on her favorite part of the internship. “I’ve seen a lot of enthusiasm from the children from the different schools, as well.”
While the internship does not directly relate to what Goodwin and Perry want to do in the future, it has given them valuable skills in writing press releases and working in office environments.
There currently aren’t more internship opportunities within New Bedford Public Schools, but Perry said there are recruitment fairs for graduating students hoping to be teachers.
Outside of education, there are plenty of internship opportunities for every student at UMassD, regardless of major. Goodwin and Perry obtained their internships through Handshake, a new service that became accessible to UMassD students in January.
“It’s a way to connect students with job and internship opportunities,” said Amelia Alburn, Director of Experiential Learning and Internship Development at the Career Center.
Through Handshake, students have thousands of opportunities available at the click of a mouse. Companies are able to specifically select schools they want their opportunities presented to, and so far, UMassD averages about 400-500 new jobs posted every week.
While there are plenty of local opportunities posted, the nationwide service also gives students the chance to work across the country in any industry. Opportunities at renowned companies, like The New York Times, are even available.
“If a student wants to have a professional job related to their major in Boston, they can find that on Handshake,” said Alburn.
“If a students wants to be a park ranger at Yellowstone or in Colorado, they can find that on Handshake, too.”
Handshake may be found under the “Student Resources” tab on the myUMassD portal. To join, students log in with their UMassD information and are immediately able to create their profile based on specific job interests.
Regardless of how students find internship opportunities, Alburn highly recommends every student to obtain one.
“Internships are such a vital part of making [a] resume the best it can be for that employer to want to hire you,” said Alburn.
To students who are seeking internships, Goodwin said to “take it as seriously as you would any other job.”
“Initially, just apply for it,” advised Perry, who had been unsure if she should apply to the Superintendent Office internship. “Do your best in the interview. Just go for it.”
For more information on Handshake or job/internship opportunities, students are encouraged to visit the Career Development Center, located on the ground floor of the Campus Center in Suite 001 and next to UMass Pass.