By Anne Bremer
This summer, The Watershed Project was fortunate to welcome five summer interns to our ranks. Although these interns came to us with a wide range of skills and interests, they all share the desire to make a positive impact in their community (four of them are Richmond residents) and learn more about the environmental field. All of our interns are introduced to a variety of environmental professionals, develop concrete skills that are relevant to their interests and future endeavors, and learn about the workings of a small non-profit. They also work on meaningful and impactful projects, and learn about our watershed and how they can become stewards of it. For more information about our internship program, visit our careers page.
Elliott Maroto and Calder Abbott are high school students aiming to gain insight into potential career paths while building workplace skills and experience. Elliott, who attends El Cerrito High School, came to us through the West Contra Costa Unified School District (WCCUSD) Summer Internship program, and Calder has already been interning with us for several months through Albany High School’s Environmental Design Society English and Technology (EDSET) Academy. They have spent their summer working with our Education and Greening Urban Watersheds teams on several projects, such as maintaining green infrastructure on the Greenway, conducting a trash assessment in a creek, developing educational materials for lessons and field trips, painting a mural, and monitoring native Olympia oysters.
Kevin Vasquez is studying Criminal Justice at San Francisco State University. He is working toward a career in the legal field, perhaps as an Immigration Lawyer or Environmental Lawyer. As a lifelong Richmond resident, he wanted a summer internship where he could make a difference on the ground in his community, and develop his community outreach and education skills. He is accomplishing these goals by assisting our Healthy Watersheds team with outreach for Coastal Cleanup Day. He has created and distributed flyers for the event, and is reaching out to schools, churches, gyms and more in hopes that these organizations will bring groups of volunteers to help us clean up the shoreline on Saturday, September 15th. We hope you’ll join us at Shimada Park or Albany Bulb too! For more information, see visit our Coastal Cleanup Day website or email email@example.com.
Xavier Ravella and Melanie Parra are high school students who came to us through the Community Leadership Institute (CLI) at Leadership Public Schools. The CLI teaches students about the many different ways they can be leaders in their community (civics, advocacy, direct service, local government, and more) through workshops, site visits, guest speakers, and reflective discussion. As second-year participants in the program, Xavier and Melanie spent two days with The Watershed Project as a way to get to know a local organization in more depth. They toured our office, met several staff members, conducted informational interviews, examined and analyzed reports, and facilitated a workday with the first-year CLI students on the Richmond Greenway. They also completed projects in line with their own interests: Xavier, who is interested in restoration, spent time with our Greening Urban Watersheds staff tending to our green infrastructure sites. Melanie, who is interested in pursuing her Doctorate of Education, worked with our Education staff to update field trip activity materials.
Many thanks to Elliott, Calder, Kevin, Xavier, and Melanie for their hard work this summer! Are you interested in an internship with us? The Watershed Project welcomes interns year-round! If you would like to join our team, please send a resume and cover letter expressing your professional interests, skills, and experience via email to Juliana Gonzalez at firstname.lastname@example.org with “TWP Internship Program” in the subject line.