Diving Into Three Milton Students’ Summer Experiences
by Charis Palandjian on Friday, September 30th, 2016
Milton students spend their summers in a variety of ways — at camp, traveling, engaging in community service, or simply relaxing at the beach. This summer, many students engaged in jobs and summer internships, anything and everything from scooping ice cream to cloning DNA. The Milton Measure interviewed a few students with summer jobs to learn about their experiences.
Te Palandjian (I) interned at the Boston City Council, the legislative branch of the city government. She shadowed the president of the council, Michelle Wu. Working with Michelle, Te helped draft legislation and attended hearings as well as minority group meetings. Te’s work with the City Council restored her faith in government because she learned that “it’s all about the people.” Te also realized that she wants to pursue humanitarian work.
During her work, Te also had the opportunity to pick an independent project and investigate an area of her choice. Te ultimately chose to focus on HubWay, a City Council implemented bike sharing system, noting that the bikes are economically and environmentally friendly. However, Te also found that, although the bikes were supposed to be accessible to everyone, there were very few to no bikes in areas like Mattapan and Roslindale.
Te called the mayor’s office, who replied that they did not want to sponsor HubWay in economically underdeveloped areas. She believes the refusal to be “ironic” because the bike system is meant to be accessible to everyone, especially low income people who need to commute to work. She states that while the City Council would like to see developments in the HubWay system, these changes do not fit with the Mayor’s agenda. Te’s internship this summer was very eye opening; she “learned a lot from helping people in need and experiencing work in the government.”
Meanwhile, during her summer 2016, Olivia Risoleo (II) was a camp counselor at her old preschool, the National Child Research Center in Washington, D.C. This school offers accommodations to children with special needs, with a focus on especially autism. This summer was Olivia’s third at NCRC, and she started working there because she “loves being around children.” Each summer, Olivia learns more about children, their development, and how to empower special needs children.
Olivia describes her experience working with a student who had just learned to walk and wasn’t able to communicate during Olivia’s first year at NCRC. Olivia spent a lot of time with this student and grew very close to him, as she learned to understand him. She and the teachers worked to help this boy communicate. This past summer, his last at the school, the boy could speak a few words and used sign language to express all of his basic needs and feelings. This boy’s powerful story really affected Olivia, and she expresses that she “will never forget him.” Olivia’s work these past summers at NCRC taught her that she wants to pursue a career involved with special needs children.
Lastly, Noah Cheng (I) worked at the Tyler Jacks Lab, a cancer research lab, in MIT’s Koch Institute on his own project: cloning DNA. He looked at a “protein that is integral in tumors’ defense against the immune system.” Noah cloned DNA that coded for different variations of this protein so that mice could express it. He also dissected a mouse and participated in a lab scavenger hunt. Noah’s work at the lab this summer reinforced his interest in medical research and made him consider the possibility of becoming a doctor.
All three students The Measure interviewed were passionate about their summer jobs. Although the three jobs were vastly different, each student made an impact and clearly learned a lot. Having a summer job helped these students gain exposure and experience in career paths they may pursue in the future.
Short URL: http://miltonmeasure.org/?p=8290