The opportunity to spend this summer working with Science Clubs International (SCI) allowed me to grow and learn in many ways. Having the chance to be involved in such an impactful organization certainly shaped my goals for my professional career. I understand the importance of making science education accessible to spark social transformation, especially in Latin America where there aren’t as many opportunities in the field. Teaching high school and college students about the impact scientific research can have on the world and introducing them to the field is the way to create change-makers. Through engaging assignments, I have grown into a better educator, collaborator, student, researcher, coordinator, and team member. My confidence and understanding of non-profit STEM education has grown, and I know I want to continue collaborating and working with a project like this in the future.
During my time with SCI, my confidence working in a professional environment increased. As an intern, I have been involved in the growth, development, and organization of an SCI international event that will happen next month for over 300+ students from different countries. Every year, the organization hosts young scientists, graduate students, and postdocs to share their knowledge and stories about pursuing careers in science with high school and college students, and to organize workshops to offer a hands-on scientific experience for them. As I worked in the organization of the event, I demonstrated initiative by increasing the number of Brazilian students applying to the event. I improved my communication skills by translating the website, documents, and tutorials across three languages: Portuguese, Spanish and English. While I’m working at the event next month, I’ll be able to see all of our work actually coming to life.
I’m proud of all of the work I’ve been involved in this summer and grateful I had the opportunity to pursue this internship. For those interested in interning with SCI or a similar organization, I believe I can offer advice on how you can make the most of your internship experience.
The main advice I would give is to learn from the experience each professional brings to the team. I understand that as an intern, it may seem scary to approach them in the work environment, but most individuals are open to talking about their careers in and contributions to the STEM nonprofit sector. When I felt comfortable doing that, I received extreme support from those I work with, developed a professional relationship with them, and learned to better advocate for what I believe.
Working with SCI was an incredible experience. This is something that I have always wanted to do since I participated in one of their programs in high school, and being able to be on the inside and learn how everything is put together was a rewarding experience. I also loved reflecting on my experiences by writing these blog posts throughout the summer. I hope these posts inspire other students to pursue similar internships and apply to be a part of the wonderful WOW cohort in the coming years.