The summer 2022 break concludes with many Oklahoma Christian University students having finished internships and jobs. While college creates a solid base for career preparation, these internships and real world experiences have a significant impact on how a student views their education for employment.
Senior Mia Hensley was given the opportunity to work with an organization called Positive Tomorrows over the summer period. Positive Tomorrows is a social services agency specific to children and families experiencing homelessness.
Hensley worked as a summer camp counselor and teacher’s assistant, helping children specifically in kindergarten. She said she had the chance to watch children experience a wide and diverse range of activities and groups.
“Watching them grow educationally and mentally is something I will never get tired of,” Hensley said. “Although my position was sometimes challenging and required a significant amount of patience, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”
Having volunteered with Positive Tomorrows previously, Hensley said she already had an interest in their mission and practices.
“I fully believe in their mission to partner with families experiencing homelessness to educate their children and create pathways to success,” Hensley said. “The amount of love poured out to all of the families is astronomical, and I am just lucky I got to be a part of it.”
Unique experiences are one reason junior Jaxton Boyd decided to take on his internship for U.S.A Softball this summer. As the National Office Intern there, Boyd said he was able to rotate around four different departments and experience the unique branches of U.S.A Softball.
“It was amazing; I got to work with a bunch of really cool people from all across the country and work some of the biggest events softball has to offer,” Boyd said.
Boyd said softball has always been a part of his life, and having the opportunity to work with U.S.A Softball was his ideal internship opportunity.
“I didn’t realize that USA Softball was in Oklahoma City, but when I found out, I thought it would be such a cool experience to work for a sport that I love at the highest level,” Boyd said.
Internships allow for education and experience most college students need to prepare for their future career paths. Hensley said the learning aspect did not feel nearly as important as the experience she had at Positive Tomorrows.
“This job was challenging and it humbled me and pushed me to grow in patience,” Hensley said. “However, it also brought me so much joy to see cute little smiling faces every single day. It was the most fulfilling position I have ever had.”
As a sports management major, Boyd said he was able to discover where he truly thrives within his career path.
“I found out I love having full control over any event that I do. I think, ultimately, I would love to work the in-game parts of softball,” Boyd said. “I’ve learned that Christianity, faith, and spirituality is something I want to help grow in sports, and it starts at a young age.”
Boyd said students investigating internship opportunities should not be afraid to try something which may seem impossible.
“Be open to doing any type of work and be open to talking to everyone.,” Boyd said. “Each connection you make goes a long way in furthering your career and you never know what could happen.”
Oklahoma Christian has multiple outlets for students to discover internship opportunities, such as Day Six. There are also options to discover something individually or through an intuitive standpoint.
“Go in with an open mind and let yourself be challenged and experience new things,” Hensley said.