Hi, my name is Anahi (she/her/hers) and I am working for OSU Extension in Washington County this summer. In a couple of weeks, I’ll be heading back to college to start my sophomore year. I feel nostalgic for my time working with the team in the Washington County Extension Office, as time has flown by. Every event I attended provided me with new learning opportunities, from the work of our community leaders to the curiosity of the youth I mentored.
I could not have asked for a better team, one full of compassionate and dedicated individuals who work to have an impact on the people in the county. As I reflect on my final weeks, I can only acknowledge how fortunate I was to have the privilege of joining the team. As an Extension intern, I had the opportunity to be part of various community events. I was at free lunch sites throughout summer with a community organization, Operation H.O.P.E., to hand out science-activity bags. My days were filled with joy when I would softly hear “thank you” from every kid while they hurried to open up those bags.
On the days I spent with the 4-H Youth Environmental Educators (YEE) I mostly sat back and observed their work to learn as much as I could from them, their maturity, and their commitment to their projects. I would like to give a special thank you to the YEEs! All 10 kids brought fun to everything we did and being there to assist their adventures was a privilege. To have been part of their impact at Blue Lake Regional Park in Fairview and their community garden is beyond rewarding. Their dedication is something I will always admire. I spent days at the park with them and supported their planning days, learning and being mesmerized by their passion for everything they did.
I also worked with Juntos, an Extension Open Campus program that quickly became incredibly significant to me. Juntos allowed me to share my experiences as a first-generation Latina student in a foreign country. I saw myself in every student I met, and I felt my family’s presence through every parent attending the meetings. Not only did I have the gift to share my story in order to inspire, but I did so alongside a hardworking leader and role model, my internship supervisor Ezequiel Lopez-Reyes. I can only hope that this summer is just the beginning of my time with Juntos.
Extension expanded my passion for serving the community. It has been an experience that taught me the importance of curiosity, how much knowledge you can be gifted with by serving others, and that the resources available to us can always be shared to uplift others. To OSU Extension, thank you. I appreciate you taking the time to read about my personal Extension internship experience.