Time in the Commons
May 7, 2021

This internship, if nothing else, forced me to take a big step back and look at the state and community I live in with more perspective. It is often easy to get caught up in your own daily schedule and take where you reside for granted, but each community I’ve ever lived in has a considerable amount of potential to be improved, its just whether citizens in said town can overcome apathy to make life better for everyone.

My career I’ve entered into is journalism and no job calls for a more honest view on things. Whether its looking at the programs that have already been in place and seeing how they can be improved, or simply continued.

Places like Greensburg and Pratt display ability to overcome what may be seen as issues that can’t be overcome.

When their community was torn down by a tornado, the reaction from the Greensburg community could not have been more powerful and absolute, and the work they’ve done to improve the community should not be abandoned.

In a town like Pratt, you wouldn’t expect to have a large population in need. Through history, each society has had people in need, some acknowledging it more-so than others. The question is whether the government or fellow citizens address the suffering of those others. Pratt has not shied away from stepping up to do so and there is a genuine bond felt in the community because of that.

As the wonderful Nancy Johnson, one of the directors at the community said to me toward the end of my long, but rewarding day helping out, “If you stick around here long, please come back and help out again. It may surprise some people, but we like to take care of each other here in Pratt.”

Although my significant other’s current career unexpectedly led me here recently, where ever we move going forward will undoubtedly be looked at with more appreciation from my time spent in this apprenticeship.

My goals of networking, leading by example, and organizing my work environment were all accomplished to varying degrees and all bled into one another.

Networking has not been easy with the mass of people I’ve been introduced to over the past few months, but that comes with the territory in new communities with a new career. To be honest, the hardest part has been remembering everyone’s name! No doubt this is something I’ve emphasized and focused on, considerable progress has been made.

By pouring myself into work and other positive causes, I’ve led by example. That one is simple, but I believe that keeping form leads to better outcomes than over-the-top leadership attempts.

Organization, as always, is the biggest challenge for me. Luckily, with the help of an excellent boss who sets me up for success and due diligence from my end, I’ve never had a work environment less stressful.

Rural and Remote is an excellent cause and I am proud to say I took part.

Top Photo: My mother and nephew

Bottom Photo: My niece, brother, and myself during my brief year of coaching. A large part of the reason I returned to Kansas in the first place was these people.