Diary of an Intern: Maeghan’s Projects / The People / The Skills
June 30th, 2014 | Comment
Let’s find out what Maeghan has been doing the last few weeks.
One of the most valuable things that I have learned this summer is how small things can have a great impact. As an operations coordinator with Teach for America, I do not get to directly work with students; however I am indirectly having a big impact on their lives. One of the projects that falls under my job description is breakfast logistics and procedures. I have the privilege of waking up at 5 am each weekday and greeting corps members for breakfast at 6:00 am before they depart for their school sites at 7:00 am. My coworker and I have sought out ways to make the corps member’s dining experience more dynamic and help to get their days off to a good start. We put out encouraging quotes on the tables and have recently created music themed mornings. These themes include Motown Monday, Throwback Thursdays and the recent addition of Beyonce Fridays. The response to these small implementations has been amazing! You would be surprised to see how many corps members are dancing through the lines at 6:30 in the morning. The energy from week one has changed as the corps members confront new challenges in their classrooms each week. However I know that we have a positive influence on the mindset our teachers have when they enter the classroom; this makes a world of difference.
The Nashville TFA institute is very intentional about supporting the professional development of all parties involved, corps members and staff alike. I have participated in cultural competency and professional development sessions, as well as one-on-one reviews with my director who works closely with me. These have been great spaces for me to evaluate my strengths and areas of challenges, and receive insight from my boss. My operations director thinks that I am great at organizing, planning and executing and that I am efficient at getting work done ahead of time with little instruction. She also has observed a strength in relationship building and networking. One area that she and I both identify as an area of growth is tailoring my approach of communication to the audience I am interacting with depending on their age or the environment, etc. The staff recently completed the true colors personality survey and discussed how their colors play out in our work setting. Using this information, my director and I also discussed how I might grow in how I communicate with my coworkers knowing my own working style and the style of those I work with. For those of you who are familiar with the test, I am blue shaded with gold. 🙂
One very memorable and valuable part of my summer has been developing a team culture that is positive, enthused and focused. My fellow interns and I all understand our roles but are not hesitant to assist one another. We are also very affirming of one another’s contributions and talents. These small interactions are things that I will try to incorporate in my leadership approaches on campus during the upcoming school year. Overall, Nashville has been treating me well and I am learning so much. Only two weeks left!
Maeghan Livingston ’15 – Sociology major
Category: Professional Development