My summer internship at the Larned Area Chamber of Commerce has been a great experience for me. It has really had a great focus on my future career field and I appreciate that. My supervisor Sydney has been awesome at giving me projects I have gained many benefits from. I have learned so much about working in the real world and what it takes to be in a position similar to what I hope to be doing for the rest of my life.
I was given multiple tasks to complete this summer. Many of which we have found out will take much longer than a summer to complete. One of my main projects was to implement a youth entrepreneurship program into the community. I have been researching and working for two months and I have completed nearly all that I can complete for this project. I have planned an entire summer camp for middle schoolers, free of charge. I have written a grant proposal in hopes of getting a program called Junior Achievement to open its arms to Larned high school or middle school. I am hoping my work will be used in the future to help bring a great business learning experience to the students of Larned.
Another major project of mine was to start a ShopLocal campaign. The community I am in has tried this previously and failed. I have spent a lot of time researching and writing down ideas on how to successfully implement ShopLocal. Mainly, you aren’t supposed to call it ShopLocal but rather GoLocal or GoLarned. I worked all summer coming up with short and sweet advertisements and plans to launch the program but after everyone telling me no matter what I do, it won’t work, I organized a meeting. We had an ad hoc committee meeting, a roundtable discussion with no agenda just positive energy and some people who were interested in the subject. The meeting was held Monday July 27 at the Chamber. I was nervous that this meeting may be attended by those who only wanted to gripe about Larned and what’s wrong with it. I was pleasantly surprised that my announcement at the beginning asking for only positive comments was really taken to heart and we had an extremely productive meeting. We had a great turnout and everyone that came contributed in some way to the conversation. Everyone became involved and had great ideas, I couldn’t have asked for it to go any better. We decided to meet monthly and discuss ideas and start taking action towards promoting locality to the community.
I made a rack card for the Chamber, I have made social media posts, promotional videos, gone to meetings, and helped assist in many events. I’ve had my finger in a lot of pies this summer and I am so thankful for the experience. I am glad I got to reconnect with Ogallala Commons because once again they have made me step out of my comfort zone and really do something that will benefit me in the future.