The Sustainability Internship course through the entrepreneurship minor was a really informative crash course on the actual mechanisms of “being sustainable” and all of the cool stuff that is happening right now in the real world.
Degree and Class Year
What three words would you use to describe L&C?
Sustainability Internship Course Profile
What is your internship this summer, and what are your basic duties?
My internship is working with Sustainability Director Amy Dvorak to set up Lewis & Clark’s energy management program. My duties include tracking energy usage, meeting with people all over campus to talk about our program, learning about mechanical heating and cooling systems, and a lot of meetings.
What’s the best part of your internship?
The best part about my internship is getting to do something new every day, and making really great connections all throughout the institution.
How has the Sustainability Internship course supported you in the process of finding and securing your internship?
The course helped me by giving me a bunch of really cool options, giving me interview and resume advice, and then getting to talk to my professors about priorities and going over what would be best for me.
How do you see this internship leading to a career in your chosen field and aiding in your overall career development?
This internship gave me a ton of experience on what it actually means to work with energy in a sustainability context. I gained a ton of technical and soft skills that will help me be more competitive and successful at any future jobs. Most of all, it helped me see if this would be something that I actually enjoy, which it is!
How does this internship support your interest in sustainability?
This internship showed me what sustainability can actually look like in the real world and how to actually make it happen beyond the ideas that we learn about in school.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us about your experience?
It was a great experience, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in sustainability and wants to start off really strong.
Sustainability Student Profile
How would you describe sustainability at L&C?
Sustainability is a core belief at Lewis & Clark and it’s pretty apparent in my day-to-day life. It is clearly something that people consider when discussing what the school is doing, what extracurricular activities are going on, or major world events. People have a really diverse understanding of sustainability based on different majors and backgrounds. There is a broad understanding of what sustainability actually means and what it looks like. There is a lot of excitement around it and people are really out here making things happen.
What’s your involvement with any sustainability initiatives on campus? What’s the best part of your experience?
My first experience was taking the Sustainability Internship course through the entrepreneurial leadership and innovation program. The instructor, Amy Dvorak, is L&C’s director of sustainability and super knowledgeable. She is a fantastic teacher, too. She makes the subject engaging and accessible. It was a really informative crash course on the actual mechanisms of “being sustainable” and all of the cool stuff that is happening right now in the real world. We got to hear from great speakers and it gave me a ton of good ideas about what kind of sustainability opportunities exist. I even got an interview with a green building company out of it. I also run the Tiny House Club on campus, where we are building a 16-foot tiny house that we are going to donate to a local nonprofit called Community Vision. Sustainability was a big reason for taking on this project and learning about alternative, more sustainable dwellings and lifestyles.
What should incoming students know about sustainability at L&C?
Students should definitely expect to learn a lot about sustainability. It is actively discussed on campus, and there are a ton of clubs and opportunities to get involved, including SEED, Garden Club, and Tiny House Club. People are really great about connecting with people who are interested, but don’t know where to start. You don’t need to come in knowing everything. I think sustainability is a reflection of L&C students’ desire to make the world a better place, so I would be optimistic, enjoy the ride, and see where it takes you.
How does sustainability prepare students for life after L&C?
Sustainability is a rapidly growing movement that is only becoming more relevant with climate change and increased awareness of individuals and businesses. There is a ton of opportunity in the sustainability world to start something and make a real difference. L&C prepares students to enter that world and gives them the tools they need to be successful. There are so many ways to build your resume, make connections to peers and professionals, and most importantly, participate in something real and cool.