We’ve just wrapped up Benetech’s first formal Summer Internship Program, which was a huge success. You can read about our first cohort of excellent interns—Allison Clabaugh, Martin Esquivias and Nestor Frutos—in Part 1 of this two-part blog series.
Today we’d like to introduce you to our second cohort of interns: Javier Guzman and Marcos Rodriguez. They, too, were wonderful additions to the Benetech community.
As in the first session of our Internship Program, Javier and Marcos participated in various company meetings, brown bag lunches and other learning opportunities. They were also extremely helpful in assisting Bookshare with daily tasks, including proofreading dozens of student-requested picture books and updating metadata in Spanish, which allowed us to process and add many new titles to our Spanish collection. Marcos and Javier, too, came to us from Mission Middle College and the Peninsula College Fund, respectively.
Please meet Javier and Marcos and read about their internship experience:
My name is Javier Guzman and I am a sophomore at San Jose State University majoring in Criminal Justice. I found out about this internship at the Peninsula College Fund fundraising concert, where Annie Naftel talked to us about the opportunity to work at Benetech. I am very grateful I got to work with such wonderful people like Joe Berentsen, Madeleine Linares and Annie, who made working at Benetech a wonderful experience.
I decided to apply for the Benetech internship because I wanted to gain experience working in an office, but most importantly because I’ve received a lot of help from many nonprofit organizations and I wanted to learn more about the nonprofit world. Working at Benetech was also a great opportunity for me to give back to my community by helping Bookshare achieve its mission of making books accessible to people with print disabilities through the use of technology.
I really enjoyed working with everyone here at Benetech, but the thing that I value most was that I had so many learning opportunities. I really enjoyed participating in the brown bag and departmental meetings because they had so much information to offer. One of the things that I learned about Bookshare is that even though the majority of its current funding is intended to help people with print disabilities, Benetech’s Global Literacy Program more broadly works to open up new horizons for people with limited accessibility to literacy. I really enjoyed working at Benetech and seeing that the work I’ve done benefits many people around the world. I feel proud to say that I helped Benetech achieve its mission of promote social change through the use of technology.
My name is Marcos Rodriguez and I’m a high school senior at Mission Middle College. I applied to this internship because I was already volunteering and doing image descriptions using the DIAGRAM Center-developed tool called Poet. I so enjoyed describing images that, once Summer came around, I knew I wanted to do this internship. Although I didn’t know what to expect, I was very eager to apply. During my interviews with Benetech staff, I heard about all the experience and knowledge I would receive from such an internship, but nothing could’ve prepared me for the wisdom I would gain.
Being an intern at Benetech was a life-changing experience. I had wonderful supervisors (Madeleine and Annie) who taught me how to proofread, edit metadata, chop books and many other tasks. To top it all off, I had the opportunity to work in an office environment, sit in meetings and give a presentation which luckily even Jim Fruchterman attended! I was also fortunate enough to squeeze in conversations with Tyler Chick, an MBA Summer Associate with the Global Literacy Marketing team and Collin Sullivan of the Human Rights Program Field Team, who both helped me take a more decisive step in my major, Political Science. Finally, Benetech is not only a nonprofit organization, but also a family. I can guarantee I will not feel as “at home” anywhere else like I did at Benetech. For that I’d like to thank Annie, Madeleine, Joe and many more. Thank you, Benetech, for this fantastic internship!
Looking to the Future
Are you interested in future internship opportunities at Benetech? We invite you to sign up for our newsletter or check back on our blog early next year for details about our 2014 Summer Internship Program.