Thoughts on a Summer Internship

Hello World.


I have to come to terms with the fact that I never will blog as frequently as I promise myself I will. Once again, it’s been a solid two months since I last wrote. My summer internship is over, my summer classes are over, yet there are only two short weeks before I move back to campus (again).


This summer flew by. I have enjoyed my time immensely as I made new friends and worked (sometimes seemingly endlessly) for hours on end. But, as with the close of every job/season, it’s time to reflect on the good, the bad, the necessary that happened. Here are just a few things I learned this summer:


  1. Maximizing your resources is absolutely necessary to being successful.

I knew I would have the internship at AidData in early May. I knew then that it only required 30 hours of work a week, which would have left ample time to relax each day…or I could use that extra time to pursue a different field. I chose to take two classes. Once my internship started, I learned about the awesome opportunities this company had to offer: I quickly got on board with what I liked to call, a side project. Then, I learned about a research proposal competition, which I also decided to do. Did I take on way too much? Of course. Did I sit in my friends’ room several nights and wonder how I was going to get everything done? Heck yes. But now, with everything finished, I feel so accomplished and proud of what I did this summer. I wouldn’t have been happy if I had let those opportunities fly by me. So, if you’re pursuing an internship for the upcoming semester or school year, think about what else you can do. Don’t be stuck in one job, bored out of your mind with the repetition and monotony. Maximize your resources, and start something else.


Oh yeah, I would also like to mention: Maximizing your resources can lead to more networking opportunities. People higher up on the company totem pole will see you being proactive and taking interest in something you’re passionate about, and will want to write you a recommendation letter in the future.


  1. I cannot sit still for 8 hours a day.

I never thought I would have problems with a desk job in the future. I imagined myself researching, writing, crunching numbers for my dream job. Now, after having to sit down for six to eight hours a day, I know I can’t do that.


  1. Being surrounded by people you like is key to surviving anything.

I would not have survived my internship without my best friend by my side all summer. I learned the art of subtle communication- utilizing google chat to converse with someone sitting right beside you. Of course workplace gossip kept us entertained amongst the boring hours of coding, and we looked especially productive having our email open, rather than being on Facebook or with eyes glued to our phones. Communicators of the future, learn the necessity of g-chat. I can see the tagline now, “Google chat: inciting workplace rumors since 2015.”


  1. Cooking for five is more fun than cooking for one.

This summer was the first one where I was completely on my own, without a meal plan. Eating out every night is just too god dang expensive, so I had to learn how to cook.

Except, I didn’t. Luckily for me, four of my close friends all lived in the same dorm as me this summer, so we all ate together most of the time. In reality, only one of our friends knows how to cook really well. (Bless you, Andie, for your delicious food.) But, we all ate together many nights, which made the evenings so enjoyable. Sometimes I even felt like a real adult there. There were times that I knew I could have been studying, or researching, or reading a book I wanted, but I chose to strengthen the bonds of friendship with these people. They truly made my summer so memorable.

If you have a painfully boring internship, make sure you make friends that you can spend time with. I cannot stress this enough. My friends MADE this summer for me. Sure, the academic stuff was productive and made me feel successful, but my friends and the fun I had with them made this summer one of the most entertaining and memorable summers I’ve ever had.


  1. Everything has an expiration date.

Your internship will end one day. That exceedingly difficult class you’re taking will end. One day, everything will be over. So don’t worry if your internship is the worst possible thing you’ve ever done, or that you’re stuck at an awful job because it pays well but the work sucks. The terribleness will come to pass, and you can move on from it then. There were times this summer that I didn’t think I could geocode anymore. While I enjoyed my job, I would not want to do it for another summer. And that’s okay! That’s the point of internships. We do them, and we learn what we want to/don’t want to do for the future. Just take the horribleness one step at a time.

(In the event that my boss ends up reading this…I’m sorry, but you’ve said it yourself: geocoding can be boring work.)


So…that’s a very brief list of what I’ve learned this summer. I honestly do wish I had had more time to write, as I have a lot of thoughts/ideas for upcoming blog posts. But, I will inevitably get too busy, so this is what you get for now.


Did you have an amazing summer internship? What did you learn from it?


The 2013 Post

I’ve been struggling to come up with something reflective to say about 2013. In all honesty, this has been the most difficult year of my life. I’ve had to face personal issues, academic issues, monolithic feeling life choices that could potentially change my destiny. But I also have learned and enjoyed more of this entire year than I have throughout my life. In 2013, I got into college. In 2013, I graduated high school. In 2013, I joined a sorority. In 2013, I got my first job. In 2013, I started this blog. The list goes on and on. The amount of things I’ve accomplished this year have been life changing, even though I attribute this year to be the hardest year so far.

Even though my list of accomplishments feels heavy, I didn’t finish every task I started. There are still things that I would like to have done, and things that I still plan on completing. These things that I want to do can still be done. There is still time. Even though I didn’t get to them in 2013 doesn’t mean that I will never do them. Reflection drives motivation. I stand by this phrase. Reflection shows you what you did and empowers you to do more. You saw that you could do this certain job, so who can tell you that you can’t do the next? If you learn anything from reflecting (as it is the end of the year), do not focus on what you did wrong, but focus on what you are going to do right. 

What I’m realizing is that as you grow older, life does get harder. Each passing year will seem, to quote a friend, “like a never ending ride on the struggle bus.” And that’s because we are learning. We are adapting. If life got simpler, we wouldn’t be enjoying it. And who doesn’t want to get more out of life?

So return those lemons to life; nobody gives you anything. You work for it yourself. And be darn proud of it.

And here, friends, is my all-encompassing, year of 2013, self proclaimed reflective thought:

Let life be hard. Relish in the fact that it is, and agree to never let it keep you down.

  (For longer than it takes to finish a pint of Ben & Jerry’s, that is.)


Happy New Year! 

What is your one sentence 2013 reflective thought?