- Work on adding an application family to a file
- Practice report out presentation
- Mock presentation for CIO and fellow IT interns
- Daily stand up to discuss current state of the application
- Work on nesting issue with adding to certain components to a file
- Attended a wrap up discussion
- Volunteer with Club Esteem to help kids build FM radios
- Dinner with all IT interns and ITLP advisors
Name: Autumn Thompson
Type of Project: Internship
This summer I was lucky enough to find a healthcare internship in Ho, Ghana. Another student from OSU and I were placed in a local health center that focused on preventative care that was about 30 minutes from our home base. For a month we were able to witness the healthcare system in Ghana, weigh children, monitor their growth and development, visit local schools to educate them on important topics such as AIDs and malaria, and travel on home visits to patients in local communities.
It had always been a dream of mine to go to Africa, and the fact that there was an internship there that was directly related to what I want to do for the rest of my life made it the perfect trip. The only thing I really knew about Africa was that they had cool trees, elephants, and what the news portrayed as thousands of starving children. The funny thing is, the only stigma that held true after I got to Ghana was that they did have beautiful trees. During the month I was there I saw only a handful of people that were malnourished. All of these cases were due to the fact that they were elderly and ill, not a result of not eating.
Another thing that schools rarely cover is the amount of pride and hope that Ghanaians have. I never felt endangered or unwelcomed. Everyone was respectful and wanted to learn about our ways of life as much as we wanted to learn about theirs.
One of the experiences that I think impacted me the most throughout this whole trip occurred during a home visit. During the first week we walked to a local community to perform a monthly visit. During the home visit we walk from hut to hut and talk to every family about their illnesses and give them medical advice. When we arrived at one hut an elder women came out with a bad case of scoliosis. She was in extreme pain and couldn’t work in the fields anymore to make money for her family. Something as simple as a back brace would’ve meant the world to her and her family. We were told by the medical staff with us that a brace for a person in Ghana without insurance costs 5,000 Ghanaian pesos, roughly $1,250 here in the US.
During that same home visit, we stopped by another hut where an older man lived. I was watching the door, waiting for him to exit when I saw movement by the ground of the doorframe. When I looked down I saw the man that lived there crawling outside to come and talk to us. He had no muscle on this legs, only skin and bones. They were covered in dirt from having to drag them through the sand. His legs were cross-legged and he used only his hands to get from place to place. Amazingly, this man never once asked us for help, money, or for a wheelchair. All he complained of was pain in his wrists from having to use them at an awkward angle to crawl everywhere. He knew a wheelchair was out of the question for him; it was way too expensive. If you looked into his eyes he didn’t look sad or defeated. He still had a light in him that showed he was happy to still be alive.
These were the moments when I saw the differences between Ghana and America. In America, we have so many things that are purely for our comfort. We have heated floors while they have dirt. We have casts and medical supplies and they have home-made casts made from sticks and twine. Hot water and air conditioning? Not a chance. Even our clinic didn’t have running water. But the beautiful thing is that people didn’t care that they had so much less because they didn’t know any better. The sense of community was so much stronger. Kids played outside all day and had to walk to school. They took the time to cheer for each other and help each other reach their goals. In America, it’s so fast paced and individualized that we never slow down and take the time to make sure everyone around us is okay. Everyone just wants to be the best version of themselves that they can be. They want to be the CEO making millions or the doctor with a huge second home in France. If someone else comes between them and success, you better get out of their way because they don’t care if they have to crush your dream to get to theirs. At what point did we get to be like that? Has the American Dream always been every man for himself? When did we lose sight of going out of our way for strangers?
This trip has meant the world to me. Not only did it give me friends that will last a lifetime, but it reminded me of why I have the dreams that I have. In the future I hope to become a doctor and travel to impoverished countries like this to help wherever I can. In America I have met so many doctors that are in it for all the wrong reasons. The over competitive drive and self-interests of my peers made me wonder if this was really the path that I wanted to follow. But seeing these people with so much hope and faith, I realized that this was what I was passionate about. I have no other wish than to help as many people as I can during my lifetime. Ghana reminded me that there are people that want you to succeed more than anything, and believe that you can do it.
I also decided that I was going to try and start a club at Ohio State for Ghana. I want to focus on raising money by fundraising during the school year to send medical supplies such as braces and wheelchairs for those in Ghana without health insurance that need them. I also wanted to have biweekly meetings focusing on ending the stigmatization of Africa. Hopefully this club will encourage students to go on this trip themselves to experience what I have experienced first-hand.
I really couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity to have gone on this internship and for the funding I received from STEP. It truly was a life changing experience and I wouldn’t have used this money for anything else. It opened my eyes to a whole other way of living life and gave me the motivational boost that I needed to continue through college. I can’t wait to share these experiences with others, educate peers, and hopefully inspire others to give Africa a try.
1. My Step signature project consisted of an 8 week internship in Sydney, Australia. I worked for a company called Wrays as a marketing intern.
2. A lot can change in two months within your own personal knowledge, perspective, and behaviors. While being abroad in Australia, my perception of my own capabilities changed. From succeeding on a project at my internship, to personal challenges like conquering canyoning, I discovered capabilities I didn’t know I had. This opportunity to leave America pushed me so much further outside my comfort zone than I thought possible, but I grew in so many ways.
My view of the world also transformed. I learned that there are so many things I do not know about other countries cultures and habits. I learned how to fit in like a Sydney local, and meet so many people from different cultures, backgrounds, and personalities. I have a much deeper appreciation of the world now, and I can truly understand how big it is. Being halfway around the world and working in a different country challenged my every move to adapt and grow. I am so beyond thankful to have had this experience because I loved every second of living in a place as special as Sydney.
3. In regards to my personal growth throughout my project, I owe it to my job, and the culture of Australia. This was my first internship, and I was beyond excited to be challenged. When I was assigned different tasks or projects, for example I had a marketing internship so I worked on social media and communicating with others, I learned how to communicate, use my resources, and ask for help as I worked with a fellow intern and employees in different sectors of the company.
My freedom to explore the city on the weekends allowed me to travel far and wide to find all the must-sees of Sydney. I went surfing, canyoning, hiking, and saw every beach I could get to. After learning how to properly navigate a city, I was able to explore farther and farther as the weeks passed. With all these experiences under my belt, my perception of how beautiful the world is has grown tremendously. Every day I would discover new places I wanted to go and things I wanted to see. As time dwindled down I was able to reflect on all the amazing places I’d been. This allowed me to appreciate my incredible experiences that much more. I am lucky to have gone abroad doing an amazing program.
For the most part, it’s the little things that have stuck with me in Australian culture and behaviors. Their accents, their humor, and their kindness made the trip very enjoyable. I will never forget their hellos or “g-day’s,” and I will cherish their friendships forever. Because I travelled halfway around the world on my own, I was able to make friends with the other students from Ohio State, and carry those friendships back home. My coworkers made me excited to get into the workforce, and ready to pursue my career.
4. These transformations I have had helped me understand what kind of career I want to have, where I want to work, and where I would like to travel. When you are put in such an unfamiliar place, you are able to learn a lot about yourself. The positive changes I have seen in myself like my understanding of other cultures, and getting a taste of the work force, are important in pursuing future personal and professional goals. I now know I want to work in the fashion industry and would love to travel back to Sydney to experience the culture again. If I had not gone abroad I would not have discovered my passion to work and my love of Australia. I am so thankful for my Step signature project and the opportunities that are soon to come!
Below was a weekend well spent seeing the Opera House!
- Daily stand up to close out the sprint
- Sprint review to discuss to go over what will be done in the future
- Review our presentation to discuss final touches
- Sprint retrospective to go over the successes and failures of last sprint
- Daily stand up to discuss adding an application page
- Spent most of the day trying to get the functionality up and running. Running into an issue with referencing a component’s parent node
- Daily stand up to discuss progress about the web app
- Present our demo to the Director of infrastructure
- Receive more feed back on presentation to make it even more business structured and less about the technical
- Listen to other interns present their work this summer and hear the feedback they each recieved
- Daily stand up to discuss progress on adding a family page
- Demo the live version of the health monitoring application to the VP of IT
- Received feed back from VP of IT on the application and how to present the product from a more business stand point
- Finish working on adding a family to a file
During the past eight weeks, I worked as an Accounting intern in the Financial Services department of an international insurance company in Hong Kong. I got the chance to know how corporate finance, as one of the accounting and finance jobs, is like and briefly know how financial departments operate.
I think not only the understanding of myself, but my view of the world changed as my internship passed.
For myself, I know more and specifically what role I play when working with teams, as well as my shortages. I see how my lack of networking skill might negatively influence my career in the future. But the good thing is, I kind of know what kind of job I may enjoy.
For the view of the world, it’s more about the view of choosing a lifelong career in nowadays’ society. I always thought that working was all about making a living, even if I didn’t like what I am doing, it shouldn’t be a big deal. Now I started to consider involving interest in making a career decision.
During the internship, I got a chance to work with a team in a real business environment. One of the tasks assigned was to redesign a KPI calculation worksheet to maximize the efficiency and readability of it with two other interns. That was the first time I worked with a real group in a working environment. The overall working environment in Hong Kong is very fast-paced, therefore I was required to find my role on our team quickly. I found out that even though I am not a good starter, I can be a great executor. Both of the other two team members knew each other before, so they basically communicated well and knew each other’s working styles. The pressure pushed me to make an adjustment and see my potential. Professionally, I discovered my role in a team and developed teamwork and communication skills.
I also attended events held by OSU Hong Kong Alumni Club, which allowed me to talk with graduates from various industries. Through talking to one of the alumni, I heard her story about how she found the career she loved and how her skill of networking led her to what she loved. That was really impressive and made me start to practice my networking skill.
The other story I heard was from one of my coworkers. She was once like me, thinking that working was all about making a living, but her assumption changed one year after she graduated. She got really high pay in her first job, but she didn’t have any personal life since she always needed to work overtime. The most impressive thing she told me that was no matter what you were doing, you needed to have your own interests and time to do what you like, or even you got high pay, you’ll start to hate what you were doing gradually. That kind of changed how I saw career.
All of those transformations and developments were valuable for my life since I know more about myself through them. I still remember one of the alumni told us that never made a big final decision when you were young because you never knew what would happen in the future. That was really true. I always tried to find out what I would like to do as my lifelong career before that, but now I tend to experience various possible choices. Career, for me, was just a job before, but now it could be something I enjoy. Thinking like this, I find myself more enthusiastic about my professional plan in the future. Moreover, I now have clearer academic and professional goals. I really appreciate this experience.
- Daily stand up to discuss progress on our presentation
- Brainstorm session on putting together a demo for the VP
- Worked more on developing the back end of the application
- Given a tour of the data center for palm bay