From a nonprofit organization in West Africa, to the Washington D.C. office of a U.S. senator, 32 Whitman students spent summer 2010 working as interns for a diverse range of organizations and causes, thanks to funding provided by the Whitman Internship Grant.

The grant provides a stipend of approximately $2,000 to students completing non-paid summer internships that are relevant to their educational goals and career interests.

Alison Barlow, coordinator of Whitman’s Internship Grant program, said a record 71 students applied for the competitive grant this spring. Barlow said the grant is unique in that it allows students to “get creative with internships and take part in opportunities that best match their academic or career interests.”

“A number of Whitman students choose internships with nongovernmental organizations or smaller nonprofits that can’t afford to offer a stipend for interns.” Barlow said. “The Internship Grant is essential because it enables student learning experiences that might not otherwise happen due to funding issues.”

The Internship Grant is open to all Whitman students, regardless of financial need, who have completed their sophomore or junior year and who plan on returning to the college in the fall. Whitman's Student Engagement Center chooses recipients based on the merit of their proposed internships and funding is provided by a combination of gifts and endowments, including the David Stevens Internship Endowment. The Stevens endowment was created by Robert Young ’55 in 2007 to honor his former mentor, Stevens ’47, who was a prominent faculty member, mentor and leader at Whitman for nearly 50 years.

Many of the 2010 grant recipients – who collectively worked in 21 cities in five countries – recently shared photos, stories and lessons learned with an audience of student peers and internship supervisors.

“I spent the summer working alongside attorneys, social workers and interns, trying to solve civil and criminal disputes without resorting to litigation or formal arbitration,” said Tom Everett ’12, a philosophy major and aspiring lawyer who interned at the Center for Social Justice in his hometown of Spokane, Wash. “I learned a ton and enjoyed every minute!”

Bethany Waites ’11, a biology major from Lake Oswego, Ore., spent her summer interning at the Department of Transplantation Surgery at the UCSF Medical Center in San Francisco, where she further explored her interest in the sciences.

“I have learned about working in the research field through interacting with various lab members as well as surgeons and members of other labs who work collaboratively with the department of transplant surgery,” Waites said. “It has helped me better define my focus in terms of a future career in science.”

 

2010 Internship Grant recipients and internships:

 

  • Robin Lewis ’11 - Land Stewardship Project, Minneapolis, Minn.
  • Joel Wilson ’11 - U.S. Federal Reserve, Helena, Mont.
  • Matt Manley ’11 - Tostan International, Mbour, Senegal
  • Kate Pringle ’11 - First Presbyterian Church of Walla Walla, Wash.
  • Julie Light ’11 - The Peace Corps, Washington, DC
  • Freddy Sanchez ’11 - Professor K. Hoffman’s Physics Lab, Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
  • Rachel Wishkoski ’11 - Classical King FM 98.1, Seattle, Wash.
  • Taylor Chock ’12 - University of Hawai’i at Manoa – Center for Conservation Research and Training/Pacific Bioscience Research Center, Honolulu, Hawaii
  • My Thanh Vo ’11 - Biology Department, Eastern Washington University, Cheney, Wash.
  • Jackson Maberry ’11 - Walla Walla Chamber Music Festival, Walla Walla, Wash.
  • Julia Schneider ’12 - Christian Aid Center, Walla Walla, Wash.
  • Tom Everett ’12 - Center for Justice, Spokane, Wash.
  • Linnea Rudeen ’11 - Sustainable South Sound, Olympia, Wash.
  • Lara Mehling ’11 - The Chocolate Farm, San Vito, Costa Rica
  • Will Reese ’11 - Oregon Research Institute, Eugene, Ore.
  • Alyssa Fairbanks ’12 - Fabric of Life, Schillios Development Foundation, Edmonds, Wash.
  • Taylor Overturf ’11 - University of Costa Rica – Language, Philology, and Philosophy School, San Jose, Costa Rica
  • Enkhjin Batjargal ’11 - Zorig Foundation, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
  • Heather Nichols-Haining ’11 - The Office of Senator Patty Murray, Washington, DC
  • Stephanie Foster ’11 - Veterans Administration Puget Sound Health Care System, Seattle, Wash.
  • Derek Thurber ’11 - Office of English Language Programs, United States Department of State, Washington, DC
  • Deirdre Clarke ’12 - Washington State Department of Natural Resources, Olympia, Wash.
  • Amanda Lane ’12 - Compass Community Services, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Elana Congress ’12 - The Center for Bioethics at Columbia University, New York, N.Y.
  • Thu Tran ’11 - Dezan Shira & Associates, Hanoi, Vietnam
  • Mara Chang-Northway ’11 - CAUSA/AMIGOS, Salem, Ore.
  • David Mai ’11 - Professor D. Lindsey’s Lab at Walla Walla University, College Place, Wash.
  • Matt MacQuivey ’11 - Professor K. Golden’s Research Lab, Whitman College, Walla Walla, Wash.
  • Bethany Waites ’11 - Department of Transplantation Surgery, UCSF Medical Center, San Francisco, Calif.
  • Alex Pearson ’12 - World Relief, Kent, Wash.
  • David Jacobson ’12 - Portland Beavers and Timbers Media Relations, Portland, Ore.
  • Aiden Beers ’11 - Beartooth Wildlife Research, LLC, Farmington, Minn.

To learn more about Whitman’s Internship Grant program, visit the Student Engagement Center Website here.

— Joe Gurriere