I learned about Syracuse Community Geography (SCG) through my undergraduate advisor after expressing interest in seeing what a job in geography looked like. As an intern for SCG I worked on a number of projects from mapping to event planning, all of which gave me first-hand experience in a real-word workplace. These experiences allowed me to apply what I learned in the classroom, acquire a whole new set of skills, and contribute to the city of Syracuse.
Working on projects with community partners challenged me to step out of my comfort zone and let me learn many skills that I didn’t get in the classroom. For example, I learned small things such as how to send a “proper” email, and how to schedule meetings effectively, as well as larger skills such as the intricacies of conducting real research, and how to juggle numerous groups of people efficiently.
I currently work as a Project Manager for National Geographic Society. My primary responsibilities include managing NG’s signature professional development program for educators, creating an international network of educators, and working with National Geographic Explorers and field experts. I use (and continue to build on) the foundational skills that I developed at SCG on a daily basis. I constantly juggle projects and people with varying timelines, facilitate partnerships, and schedule and run meetings effectively.
Syracuse Community Geography definitely helped bridge the gap between my college experience and my professional career. I really value my experience with Syracuse Community Geography, and am so glad I took that first step of becoming an intern.