At Village, graduating students who have fulfilled their credit requirements have the unique opportunity to embark on an approved internship of their choice. The idea behind the internship is so that students have real-world experiences before going off to college or into the workforce. Students work closely with a teacher mentor, where they report back on their growth and experiences. They also keep a typed journal, where they document what they have learned. This documentation will help the students when it comes time for their final presentation.
Britt Trachtenberg, a class of 2020 intern and aspiring author, was given the opportunity to work in the library at Great Neck North Middle School. Monday through Thursday Britt does a variety of tasks to ensure that the school library runs smoothly.
Although it might sound surprising, Britt mainly checks in and out books and stocks the shelves. This gives her a sense of responsibility as the students and teachers rely on her. This constant interaction also allows her to improve her social skills and get a sense of what it is like to work in a library as well as a school setting.
There have been several other responsibilities that Britt has had to fulfill. “Sorting the non-fiction section is much harder than the fiction section,” she reported. This is because non-fiction is sorted by numbers with decimals, while fiction is sorted by last name.” When it comes to the students, Britt has to help them with finding books and computer work and research. “The students are much smarter than we were as kids,” Britt laughed. “While we used to play CoolMath Games behind our teacher’s back, these students go beyond to install and download Minecraft.” This is a problem not only because it takes focus off of school work, but also because it contains violence. The students also write words like “shmuck” and their Instagram usernames when signing in and out books, so Britt needs to make sure that acts like this don’t happen, even though she might laugh once in a while.
In many ways, this internship allows Britt to embrace her creativity, which is crucial to move her along in her career. The library setting “makes [her] more creative.” Being surrounded by books for the majority of the day allows Britt to read a lot. She expressed that she is grateful for this internship opportunity because she is also exposed to different types of authors and genres that she would normally not read. She usually reads a lot of European Surrealism poetry, but she has started to expand and even found that she enjoys reading books by Robert Frost and Ezra Pound.
Britt, a future Creative Writing major at Purchase College, has learned a lot this second semester. The creative setting has helped her realize that “characters in books can move books along more than description,” and she has learned “different ways to write and describe things.” Books are what started Britt’s writing passion. She expressed that the characters were her friends. “I want to be able to do that for someone else, I want my readers to feel the way I felt and feel when I read.” Britt’s internship has been a huge success thus far, setting her up for college and her career.