My very last act
as a Kennesaw State University undergraduate was to fulfill my internship
requirement. I chose to intern as a field technician at Edwards-Pitman
Environmental Inc. (EPEI) over the summer. It was exactly the hands on
experience that I was hoping to gain.
is a cultural resource management (CRM) firm that works mostly in Georgia.
Being in archaeology class you often hear about CRM and if you have Dr. Terry
Powis, it comes up often, due to his background in the field. Dr. Powis’ field
school is even CRM based and that gave me a small taste of what it is like. But
I must advise you, doing actual CRM work is like Dr. Powis’ field school but in
overdrive and turbocharged! This internship allowed me to see first hand what
all the hoopla was about.
Being a CRM
field tech can be very fast paced and is almost always rugged. You may be
walking behind sound barriers which haven’t been visited by a human being since
they were erected. Or maybe it’s rural Georgia and you must trudge through thick
vegetation only to run into a stream
you must fjord.
Or perhaps you are walking
along a noisy interstate, feeling
the full force of the sun for
several miles. I say all this not to scare anyone away, but to give a real
sense of what the hardest parts of the job entail. On the flip side, there are
easy days. Often, large portions of shovel test are in paved, developed areas
and those are simply written off as undigable. Other times you have ample time
to do all the shovel tests for the day and you take frequent long breaks.
Regardless of the work situation, the crew chiefs are very considerate of your
well being and take environmental conditions into account. This summer was freakishly hot with regularly
high humidity, so the crew chiefs were regularly checking in with their techs,
taking regular breaks and making sure everyone was hydrated.
majority of my time was spent in the field, but I did get a small amount of
time to work in EPEI’s highly equipped lab. My work there solely consisted of labeling
and inventorying artifacts from past projects. This is pretty tedious work, but
it’s essential that it is done correctly to ensure that the artifacts are
curated properly. Though lab work isn’t my cup of tea, so to say, but I enjoyed
doing it as it gave me a greater appreciation for the work. It also is a bug
free, air conditioned work space which was a nice break from the field!
One of the
coolest things about working in CRM is that you are actively doing preservation
work. I truly believe that work itself is of utmost
importance and the folks at Edwards-Pitman share
that value. It is nice to work in a crew of like minded people and have
an accomplished feeling that you’ve done work towards the greater good. I
really enjoyed working with people of vastly higher skill level than me. I had
a suitable, albeit amateur, skill level coming into this, but it gave way to so
many learning opportunities. It seemed like at every turn I had a question and
there was always someone there with a good answer. There is also a decent
amount of commingling of people with varying levels of experience and/or
education in the field. Being around these people gave me hands on experience
that is inherently lacking in a classroom.
When I changed my major to anthropology I envisioned myself doing work that looks very similar to being a CRM field tech and I must say I couldn’t be more satisfied with my experience, bugs, heat and all. Since my internship was the very last class I took, it felt very much like a culmination of all my past experiences at Kennesaw State. My internship with Edwards-Pitman was the perfect, pretty ribbon to wrap up my college experience.
This summer I interned at Bulloch Hall in
Roswell, GA. The site is located near the Roswell Mill, and was the childhood
home of Mittie Bulloch, the mother of former president Theodore Roosevelt. The
site showcases the Bulloch home as well as a garden, slave quarters, privy,
carriage house, and two wells. Visitors can explore the grounds and learn about
Roswell, GA, The Bulloch family, Theodore Roosevelt, and the way of life in the
Gwen Koehler, the Director of Education at
Bulloch Hall, along with her coauthor Connie H., have published three books
containing letters that the Bulloch family exchanged during the 19th
century. The books contain letters
telling the story of the love affair between Mittie Bulloch and President
Theodore Roosevelt Senior leading up to their wedding, the civil war, the couple’s
move to Thee’s hometown in New York along with Mittie’s mother, and the
hardships that the family faced during this time. These three books include
letters between 1854 and 1864. For my internship I read, analyzed, transcribed,
and digitized letters that were written between 1865 and 1869. My college experience has involved printed
textbooks and academic articles written by scholars, so it has been an
interesting experience working with handwritten letters. Not to mention these
letters are written in cursive with a fountain pen and inkwell, which now seems
to be a lost art. After all of the letters are transcribed, Gwen and her
coauthor Connie M. Huddleston will start the editing process and publish a
fourth book containing letters written post 1965. In addition to transcribing
letters, I had the opportunity to meet many docents (volunteers) at Bulloch
Hall as well as some of the members of the different guilds that meet on the
site such as the Gardeners Guild. During the middle of July Bulloch Hall hosts
Camp Rough Riders, which is a day camp for kids ages 6-10 to come learn about
the Bulloch and Roosevelt families, and do crafts relating to the time period.
I thoroughly enjoyed my time at Bulloch
Hall and wish that I could do it all over again. Being a student that is mostly
interested in physical anthropology, I wasn’t sure what to expect while
interning at a place that was more historically and culturally focused, but it
was one of the best opportunities I have ever had. The ladies that work in the
administrative office at Bulloch Hall rave about Kennesaw Students, and really
know how to make you feel welcome. I did not feel like an intern while working
at Bulloch Hall, I felt like family.
my final semester I chose to do an internship. From the very beginning of my
course work I have always been interested in doing cultural research, I was given
the opportunity to work with the homeless population in the metro Atlanta area
this summer. I was able to work and perform ethnographic research at Must
Ministries a nonprofit charitable organization located in Marietta, GA that
operates a homeless shelter and outreach program. From the very beginning of
the semester I was very excited to begin doing my first ethnographic study where
I could begin to apply what I’ve learned during my course work at KSU, by
studying and analyzing the behavior of the homeless (clients) through interviews,
participant and non-participant observation in the hope of better understanding
this particular sub-culture.
began my internship working in the intake section of the Elizabeth Inn shelter,
which was at first overwhelming and exciting at the same time. In the intake
section I was able to conduct structured
interviews with many of the clients, which went surprisingly well, since I
didn’t have considerable experience conducting interviews, the structured
interview did not require extensive training but it assisted in improving my
overall interview technique as well as being an excellent way of building
confidence for future unstructured interviews and field work. Working with and
interacting with the homeless population helped me to gain a better
understanding of the daily life of this sub-culture of our society by spending
significant time studying their behavior. Later I worked in case management,
where I was able to build rapport with many clients and conduct more extensive
interviews with the clients which gave me a broader view of the homeless and
what’s more, while working in case management I realized that each person’s
situation was unique.
internship has not only provided me with an invaluable experience it has also allowed me to have an one a kind
experience not only from the stand point of applying what I’ve learned during
my course work in the form of observations, interviews, fieldnotes all used to
form conclusions based on data, but also by broadening my perception of the
homeless, and obtain a more complete depiction of this sub-culture of our
Going into my
last spring semester as an Anthropology student, I knew my anthropological
interests- cultural research, art, and social justice. Needing an internship to
graduate, I used those key interests and found the nonprofit organization
WonderRoot. WonderRoot works directly at the intersection of art and social
justice through using creative initiatives and community partnerships. Their
programming includes artist fellowships, public art initiatives, and community
dialogues. The opportunity could not have aligned more perfectly with my
interests so I immediately reached out. I was taken on as a Programs and Events
Intern working under the Programs and Events Coordinator, Nina Dolgin. I really
enjoyed my time with the WonderRoot team and always felt that my questions,
ideas, and opinions were wanted and taken seriously.
intern program project and conversations with some of the WonderRoot staff I
was really able to development myself professionally and focus into what I
wanted my career (and life) to look like after graduation.
I had the opportunity to create my own program with the end product being a formal program proposal. I really loved the idea of community members being a part of the art-making process, so I decided to create an intergenerational community-based art program that would pair an older participant who was present during the 60’s Civil Rights Movement, and a younger participant who supports the current Black Lives Matter Movement. Together they would create a new piece of social justice art that incorporates themes from both participants experiences. Research on intergenerational programs showed that programs like this produced confidence in participants, reduced age-related preconceptions, created community, and stressed the importance of connecting art and narrative. With this research I was able to clearly set goals that stated what I wanted the participants to get out of my program. My evaluation methods for successfulness included qualitative methods, much like anthropological research, such as pre and post evaluation, interviews, and participant observation. Assessing the successfulness and whether the goals are reached is important for final reports that need to be given to any funders or stakeholders in the program. I also had to include a program schedule and budget, which my internship coordinator helped me realistically frame and break down. After completing the final document, I felt very accomplished and proud of my work. I always consulted Nina with my ideas, but the program is my program that I get to take with me after the internship. I genuinely enjoyed brainstorming ideas for a program, as well as fleshing the idea out into a detailed proposal.
While I am
still finding my place in the social justice journey,
interning at WonderRoot really
helped me focus my career pursuits. Many anthropology majors know what they
love about Anthropology but do not know how to translate that into an actual
job. Before my internship, if people asked what I wanted to do with my major
(which all anthro majors are used to being asked) I would say something general
and unclear, like cultural research at an organization, museum, or academia. Of
course, no one really knows what that means and I do not think I really did either. Being at WonderRoot helped me translate my “cultural research” answer to
a more confident answer that is much more clear and concise for professionals. WonderRoot showed me that I wanted to
conduct qualitative research in underserved, minority communities in order to
create meaningful and impactful programs for that community. Focusing and
clarifying my career desires has really helped me when searching for jobs, and
I was able to very quickly find potential jobs in which I was able to market
myself because of my time at WonderRoot. If you are an Anthropology student who
knows your passions but has no idea how to make that into a career, I highly
suggested taking an internship. Find an organization that closely aligns with
your passions, apply, and learn more
about yourself- professionally and personally.
internship at Sterling Estates of West Cobb Senior Living Community has proven
to be the best decision I have every made. In January 2019, I started my
internship, excited to work with seniors. I got hired on as a Community
Relations Intern, learning the ropes of the sales process. At first, I wasn’t
sure if ‘sales’ was going to be for me. But, after seeing what an impact the
Community Relations Counselors, Martha and Sherry, were making, I wanted learn
every bit of the process that I could.
intern, my main responsibilities were the daily tasks like making sure we had
enough copies, keeping the conference room tidy, and going on tours to learn as
much as I can about the selling process and community. Slowly, I started
handling more tasks, such as working with the Director of Maintenance in order
to ‘flip’ rooms on time. In February, I was offered a full-time position as a
Community Relations Counselor with my main focus in coordinating the move in
process with new residents.
I want to
thank the Department of Geography and Anthropology for this opportunity,
because without the requirement for an internship, I wouldn’t have the career I
love today. I also want to thank Dr. Alice Gooding for all of the help she has
been in helping me to achieve my goals this semester.
My internship at the LabCorp
Austell Patient Service Center was amazing! I got to dive into completely new
experiences that will definitely be useful in my future career pursuit as a
Physicians Assistant. I was grateful for the opportunity to be so hands on with
the patients, specimen and understanding all aspects of what it takes to work
in one of these offices. Furthermore I hope sharing my experience can help
future students on deciding what internship is best for them.
One of the most valuable tools that
I took away from LabCorp is understanding how to work with patients of all
different backgrounds and cultures. I didn’t realize how important and
necessary it would be for me to help patients with simple task, such as
providing necessary identification, or informing them about the testing they
were having done. Sometimes patients would come in frustrated at their employer
or doctor for the test they had requested, so it was imperative that we
remained calm and assured them that this would be a quick and easy process.
Another thing that I learned to do from this
internship was conduct different lab test. Of course, I wasn’t allowed to
conducting them on my own but it was very cool being able to participate in the
process. A few that I did quite frequently were drug screens, urinalysis,
genetic molecular testing, and paternity testing. One of the coolest things
that I did was the hair drug screen test where I was taught on a practice doll
how to collect 200 hair strands from the patients head. I also had the pleasure
of working with newborns to perform heel sticks test, which was quite exciting.
One of the most challenging parts
of this internship was learning how to work the Touch system which is how all
the specimen are tracked. This was something that I frequently needed
assistance with, and it wasn’t uncommon for Patient Service Technicians to mess
up on. Of course, I always double checked if I had questions because if
specimen got lost or mixed up, then that could result in retesting, which is a
hassle for the patients.
In addition to working in the lab,
I also got the opportunity to ride around with the courier who picks up the
labs at each office. This was interesting to see what goes on behind the scenes
once your lab work leaves the lab. I was able to visit the Birmingham
headquarters where the specimen are organized and tested. This facility had
many departments with chemist and biologist who studied specimen in detail.
Unfortunately I wasn’t
able to take photos in the lab due to it being a HIPPA violation; however, I
did include pictures of what the office looked like and the rooms that the
patients were serviced in. This internship was an incredible experience and I
would most definitely recommend students to apply for this internship. I was
very active at this facility and staff were extremely helpful in teaching me
the in’s and out’s of the lab.
This May our senior Internship and Research Practicum students presented their amazing work to a panel of faculty and peers. From private companies to non-profits, our interns developed a range of skills in contemporary work places and put their anthropological knowledge to good use. Congratulations to those who scored a paying job as a result of their internship!
Our research students explored biological and cultural variation while testing basic and applied scientific questions. Congratulations to our seniors who have been accepted to graduate school programs in the fall! Check out our department Facebook page for all the updates: https://www.facebook.com/KSUGeoAnth