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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

So long, Intern Emily!

Posted by WWC's TIPS intern, Emily Buckner.

I began working for Washington Wilderness Coalition at the beginning of July after being set up with them by the organization Teens in Public Service. I applied to TIPS this spring, hoping to get one of the few paid internships they offered with a local non-profit organization. I have always spent a large amount of my time outdoors, hiking, biking, and canoeing, and am passionate about the environment, so I was thrilled when TIPS set me up with such a leader in conservation like WWC.

This summer, my main project was organizing Washington’s Great Outdoors Week, which is taking place August 20-28. I researched all of the different outdoor recreation groups in Washington and their events happening during the designated week, drew up the schedule on the WWC web site, and wrote the fact sheet on the threats to Roadless areas in Washington and around the country. Over the course of the summer, I acquired many new skills in the office, such as using a database and a fax machine, becoming competent in Excel, understanding the importance of ‘sticky notes’ and learning how to be a responsible employee, as well as gaining a whole new perspective on environmental policy.

In addition to office work, I also went to several outreach events and worked at the WWC booth, talking to people about the mission of WWC, the current issues they are addressing, and ways the public could become more involved. This was a much more challenging assignment than working on the computer, but it was even more rewarding. It was at these outreach events that I really learned the most about the organization and how to communicate clearly with people. I feel like I grew the most from these experiences and gained an enormous amount of confidence in myself.

My favorite part of working at Washington Wilderness Coalition this summer was getting to know the staff and other interns working there. I made multiple new friendships with my coworkers, who are all amazing people and care more about their work and each other than just about anyone else I have ever met. I think the most important thing I’ve realized over the course of my internship this summer, however, is that I should never take for granted the beautiful wild lands that surround us!

Emily Buckner recently completed her TIPS internship with Washington Wilderness Coalition. She will begin her freshman year at Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, this fall. Thanks to Emily for all of her hard work and dedication to WWC – you will be missed by the staff!

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