Interned at Litchville/Marion Public Schools, School Counseling
Senior majoring in Psychology and Human Services with Criminal Justice Concentration
Minoring in Sociology
Expected graduation: May 2017
1. How did you find your internship position?
I found my position through Career Services. I had an idea of where I wanted to go, but that turned into a dead end. So Career Services contacted a different school counselor that was able to take on an intern.
2. Why did you decide to do this internship?
I decided to do this internship because I was deciding on a career that I would want to pursue after VCSU. I knew that I wanted to do something in the counseling field, but I did not know what aspect of counseling I wanted to do so I thought that school counseling would be something I would like to try.
3. What were your responsibilities?
For my internship, I had multiple responsibilities. At the beginning of my internship, I mostly observed my supervisor while she did her job, and updated her website. As the internship progressed, I slowly acquired more responsibilities. Eventually, I was creating and leading class lessons. I remember one time when my supervisor had two grades in a class, when she prepared for one, so she asked me to take one of the grades and do some sort of lesson with them. Based on my experiences from the internship and VCSU, I was able to give an impromptu lesson on why a student should get some sort of post-secondary degree. Also, at the end of my internship I planned a week focused on STEM careers. This week consisted of activities, presenters, and a question of the day, with prizes.
4. What was your favorite part of the internship experience?
My favorite part of my internship was interacting with the students. I remember a time where I had given a lesson to first and second graders on how to clean their desks, during the time that was allowed for them to clean their desks, a second grade boy came up to me and told me that he wished that I would be his teacher all the time. Having that feeling, where you know that you actually impacted a student’s life, is something that I will never forget. It was at that moment that I realized that school counseling is where I belong.
5. In what way has your VCSU experience prepared you for this internship?
My time at VCSU had prepared me for my internship in a couple of ways. One of these ways was by giving me an understanding of the techniques used during counseling sessions. During my internship, I was also taking Counseling Theories & Practice. By doing this, it allowed me to learn about theories of counseling, and then I was able to watch them in real-life during my internship. This gave me a better understanding of the theories and techniques being used. Another way VCSU had prepared me for my internship, was by the experience I got as a member of the Viking Campus Activities Board (VCAB). I was a member of VCAB for 2.5 years, 1.5 years as a coordinator. In that time, I was able to learn how to coordinate. I used this experience when planning the STEM careers week. Due to me VCAB experience, I knew what steps had to be done for each event and activity, so that the week would be a success.
6. How do you feel this internship has helped prepare you for your career?
This internship gave me a look into my future career. At the beginning of this internship, I did not know what career I wanted to pursue. After about halfway into my internship, I knew that this was my future career. This internship also gave me a direct look into what my being a school counselor would be like. Now I know what will be expected of me when I get into this field. Finally, this internship gave me an experience that most undergraduate students do not get. I have been told by multiple people, that most undergraduate students do not get the opportunity to intern with a school counselor. Also, if they do get to intern, they are normally not allowed to observe individual meetings, like I was able to do. This puts me a step ahead of other applicants when applying to graduate school, and eventually for a job.
7. What advice would you offer to a student completing an internship?
Advice that I would offer a student that is completing an internship, is learn as much as you can from it, even if the internship has nothing to do with your future plans. I have friends that have done internships, that are not related to their future career goals. They have told me that even though their internship is not related, they still learned valuable skills and abilities that have helped them in their current careers. So no matter what you’re doing, there is always something that you can get out of the experience.