An Internal View of the Y
Have you ever walked into a store and immediately been immersed with a welcome feeling? Then walked out, feeling even better? This is what I feel at the Y. In fact, one time I was on a bench lifting weight and I knew I would need some help. I was walking around looking for someone who could help me and I came across a Special Olympics athlete who happened to be a power lifter. He actually took the time out of his workout to spot me and give me some tips about how to lift better. He even showed me a different way to lift. I still think about that day and what he taught me.
Flash forward to college and there I am looking for a relevant internship. Where do I start my journey? At the place where I have always felt so welcomed- the Y. So, this summer I started an internship at the Philadelphia Freedom Valley YMCA corporate office. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I’ve come to find out it’s the exact same way as going to a YMCA branch-nice people who only want to help you along on your journey to be a better person. And at the end of each day, I walk out feeling accomplished.
I was given so many jobs and opportunities that were all so fun, it’s hard to pick which one was my favorite. So I’ll tell you about one of my first jobs. I helped out at a golfing event at the ACE Club. The golfing event was for a lot of the YMCA’s sponsors. In taking part in this event, I got to see just who helps the Y be the Y. It was great to get out and see a different side of the marketing spectrum.
Another project I was given that I really enjoyed was figuring out the typical member at the Rocky Run YMCA. I got to really push my limits on my knowledge of Microsoft Excel. If I didn’t know how to do something, use a certain program, there was always someone who was always there to help. They were always happy to help me and did a fantastic job explaining how to do something the most efficient way.
Coming into the job, I thought it would be exactly what it was. I learned so many things from editing pictures to using smug mug. What surprised me was the atmosphere in the office. I have always worked outside and thought that it would be quiet in the office. It was the complete opposite, everyone spoke to everyone, made conversation, and was very kind to everyone who walked through the door.
I feel that my internship at the Y prepared me for the future. They gave me a very personalized experience, teaching me a wide variety of things that many other companies wouldn’t find the time to do. It was great to see that the Y actually works internally the same way they work for their members- welcoming, helpful and happy to be there.