Although I was born in Charlotte, I have moved all over the country and my family currently lives in New York. I knew that coming back to Charlotte for college would sometimes be tough, because of the distance from my family, but volunteering at International House has helped me find my Charlotte family! Working at the front desk every day for a five-week internship this summer allowed me to have the chance to get to know everyone here at International House. I really enjoyed this and the opportunity to work with different staff members throughout my internship.
I learned a lot from my internship and gained a lot of practical skills too. I learned a lot about the U.S. immigration system and the challenges that immigrants and refugees face while coming here in search of a better life, and why it is important for our country to continue to welcome immigrants and refugees.
I have taken Spanish for seven years, but I have never had much experience using it with native speakers. Working at the front desk was the perfect opportunity to help clients over the phone and in person who only spoke Spanish, and I gained a lot of confidence with my abilities.
Lastly, I gained a lot of customer service skills, which is an area I had never had experience in. I think that was really valuable for me because those are skills that I can not only transfer to future jobs, but to my personal life as well.
I wasn’t ready to say goodbye when my internship ended in June, but luckily, my fall semester schedule will allow me to continue to volunteer here on Tuesday afternoons!