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landIf anyone is looking for a paid internship over the summer that fits your focal area, consider applying for an internship with the North Carolina state government. Every year, North Carolina opens up applications for positions that range anywhere from working with the governor to assisting and completing research for the museums; you can practically find an internship for almost any focal area. This program is run through the Youth Advocacy Involvement Office and applications are due December 18th. If you are unsure whether or not this is for you, let me tell you about my experience:

Last summer I took up a lease with a friend in Raleigh and reported to work at the North Carolina Department of Agriculture with the Soil and Water Conservation Districts. At the time, I thought my focal area would be related to communications, so my internship description involved designing brochures and creating marketing materials. I had held a job at Technician and Agromeck (NC State’s newspaper and yearbook) as a writer, photographer and designer, so this job suited me quite well.

Although I initially thought I would be designing brochures and flyers for my internship, it lead to a lot more as my supervisor saw what skills I had in marketing and design. Throughout the summer, I traveled around North Carolina to farms and landscapes with my professio
nal DSLR to take photos that were to be displayed on banners taller than I stand. I talked to farmers and technicians about their work and transcribed them into brochures and information packets that were to be sent around the state. My proudest achievement was designing the new Soil and Water Conservation logo. All in all, it was exhausting work, but from it I was able to obtain some great recommendations from government officials as well as a more developed resume and portfolio for my future career.

My story focuses on design and marketing. There are plenty of other internship opportunities that involve research, engineering, policy, and everything in between. One thing that I found interesting about the program was that the internship office that oversees all the interns would put together bonding experiences with other interns who were not in your field. Sporadically throughout the summer, you have opportunities to go to historical sites, museums, and landmarks across North Carolina with other interns all paid for by the office. You also get paid to go to these experiences as well. A few of my favorite memories involve finding out that another intern who sat next to me was also an ES major at NC State, exploring downtown Raleigh with a group of people I met from UNC, and meeting with Governor Pat McCory- at his house.

Side note: The governor’s mansion is possibly one of the most beautiful homes I have been to in North Carolina, and he also has an adorable dog.

If you are considering applying for an internship with the North Carolina government, visit: http://www.doa.state.nc.us/yaio/interns.aspx and if anyone needs any help with their application or deciding whether or not they want to apply, feel free to contact me at dcan@ncsu.edu.

Happy exams!