As the semester closes out, and I come to the end of my internship opportunity, I look back on how interning at SWANA has been an opportunity I’ll never forget.
I am a senior Communications major at University of Maryland. As I approached my spring semester never having had an internship, I knew that if I sought professional experience in my major before graduating, this was my last opportunity. I’ve always had a passion for writing and expressing myself and I take pride in finding the most articulate ways to communicate—it’s what I’ve always had a niche for. When I saw SWANA’s communication and marketing internship opportunity, I knew I had to apply.
I didn’t know lots about the solid waste industry coming into this position. I knew how to recycle and have always had appreciation for Earth but I didn’t know any of the logistics or how the industry operated. Since working in this industry, and working hands on with marketing materials, I can say I know a lot more about the industry than I did when I first started.
What this experience has taught me is that I can teach myself anything, but what really matters is that I’m doing what I love most, which is expressing myself creatively, producing content, and finding a way to appeal and connect with audiences. All of the skills I have learned—creating social media content, designing company emails, assisting in the SWANA blog, and designing graphics have helped me confirm this is exactly what I need to be focusing on when seeking a long-term career.
Not only has what I’ve learned meant a lot to me, but this internship came at a crucial time in my life. With Coronavirus taking graduation and the last of my college experiences from right under me, it was nice to have a stable group of supporters to keep me on track. It was nice to know I had something helping me progress towards my future in such uncharted territories.
SWANA is an excellent company with warm, open-hearted people who have pushed me towards professional success by providing me with the right resources and teaching me every step of the way. I am honored to have this experience under my belt. I will take with me the techniques and skills I’ve learned throughout this opportunity through the rest of my career endeavors.
Thank you SWANA, and the SWANA team, for everything you’ve taught me.