Project: Facility Management Strategic Writing
School: Tufts University
Major: International Relations, Community Health
Interning at OMFR has been such a wonderful experience in part because it has given me new eyes. As an International Relations and Community Health double major, I’ve gotten to learn more about the facilities management field and see its relevance to real life. For instance, one weekend, while exiting an elevator at my dorm, I saw a man wearing a tan uniform that had HVAC written on the shirt pocket. Normally, this wouldn’t catch my attention, but this time I recognized what the letters meant. HVAC stands for heating, ventilation, air conditioning— information I learned during an email exchange with a mechanical engineer during my second week here.
Of course, I have learned plenty related to writing as well, such as how to write successful interview questions, choose my own deadlines, decide on a topic, etc. Below is a list of projects I have worked on. Hopefully, this gives you an idea of what this internship might look like for you!
- CLEAN MATH: Smithsonian Facilities Team Participates in First Ever National Math Festival
- Earth Day: Smithsonian Facilities Team Hosts a Variety of Activities for Earth Day
- Facilities & Families: Children Interact with Smithsonian Facilities Team During 2015 Bring Your Sons and Daughters to Work Day
- Museum Mindfulness Children’s Book, Article, & Video. An educational package for young visitors to learn how they can help keep museums clean.
- Spanish Folklife Festival Interviews: The Smithsonian Folklife Festival is an annual festival that features the culture of one country every summer. This year, the theme was Peru: Pachamama (Mother Earth.) I worked with our videography intern, Yenny Martin, to help translate and write interview questions for Folklife “Participants”, the artists, singers, and dancers who came from Peru to share their culture with the public. The video, which is still a work in progress, is about sustainability, Folklife, and Peruvian culture. After gathering interview footage, I translated participants’ responses back to English. This may have been one of my favorite projects. I was very excited and eager to put my Spanish skills to use. I currently have a professional working proficiency in Spanish.
- Best Bathroom Awards Article: I learned about OMFR’s new “Best Bathroom Awards” during OMFR’s Town Hall Meeting. To learn more, I interviewed Kendra Gastright, our Director, and even shadowed members of the Best Bathroom Awards Inspection Team.
- Editing Intern handbook: I plan to completely revamp the Intern Handbook during the final two weeks of my internship.
I’ve had a ton of fun writing, but I’ve had a ton of fun outside the office too! If there’s anything true about an OMFR internship, it’s that the supervisors here want you to enjoy your experience just as much as they want your final products! My supervisors always ask me, “Sarah, how do you feel about this? Are you enjoying your summer?” and encourage me to explore the Smithsonian while I am here. I have experienced and learned so much so far, and I look forward to the rest of my summer here!