Oluwasegun Esan is a 12th grade student at People’s Prep Charter School. He is currently an intern for Schools That Can Newark.
Through my high school, I applied for the Schools That Can internship in the Fall of 2022. I didn’t expect too much at first, because I had only ever completed one internship, which had little to do with my degree and was more focused on the hospital sector. However, after being asked for an interview, I knew it would be a great opportunity to learn what it’s like to work in the humanitarian or nonprofit sector.
Because it had been a long time since I had an interview, I began preparing for the interview around two weeks prior. As the halfway mark of my internship with Schools That Can comes to a close, I began to think about past tips I covered in my blogs, and which ones I used in my interviews over the past two years.
Being able to have professional skills and communication skills in the back of your mind during an interview puts you at such an advantage. You won’t have to be taught these skills on the job. By the time you’re hired, you’ll already have the skills for that position or job that they are applying for.
I’ve hoped and planned to study biology when I move on to college. Since working at Schools That Can, I am considering being a professor or something else in a humanities-related field. In September 2022, when I was offered an opportunity to become a member of the Schools That Can team, I have worked on social media projects, assisting with improving our program, and curriculum and data analysis about students.
I was a bit nervous about the role, since I was not confident about my communication skills or my time management skills. More importantly, I had no idea what it’s like to work in a nonprofit field.
After joining the team, I learned about how communication can bring you a long way. My supervisors and I worked together to create a schedule around everything because they have actual jobs and, with the hope of trying not to disappoint both of them with my work, I took everything seriously.
After the first few weeks I started to learn things that I have never heard of until now, and how much they can help you. I learned how to work with Salesforce , I helped with analyzing and inputting data, and wrote blogs for their website. My blogs have been about career skills and research, and how that can be a change for high school students and how those skills can support them.
In the past 4-5 months, I have gotten to experience what it’s like to be part of an organization like Schools That Can, which has been a force of change in different cities all over the U.S within the school system. In addition, the organization is helping over 600+ students, mostly junior and senior high school students, with their resumes and helping them gain experience by sending them out to get the chance to job shadow.
Helping other students have opportunities like internships sets them up for better futures, and makes them ready for the real world because of the real-life experience that they gain from that internship. This is because not all schools offer internships as an elective, and they are very selective when they are given out to students. But as I wrote in my last blog post, real-world career skills are important for students. Schools That Can allows each and every student we work with that support.
I have gotten to see what it’s like to go out and convince others to volunteer for a greater cause which was, in this case, supporting students. I have gotten over the stage fright, and I have learned what it takes to keep people engaged. I watched one of my supervisors convince people from different departments and fields to help high schoolers with their resumes and interview tips.
My internship was supposed to be about 5 months. I had so much fun and have learned a lot just from the few months of working at Schools That Can, so I wanted to come back. I am happy to say that I will continue with them, making this my longest internship ever ,and the most fun and impactful. This internship helped me build my researching skills, writing skills, and time management skills. Also, I have gotten quite an exquisite experience on what it’s like to work for the betterment of others rather than myself. I hope to continue to learn and grow as my time with them comes to an end towards graduating.