Each summer, we are always excited to welcome a new team of interns. At Discovery Green we are committed to giving students an opportunity to develop their skills and help nurture and guide their interest in non-profit organizations. The contributions our interns make is invaluable: a new perspective, creative thinking and hard work, which is always welcome to the Discovery Green team. This year we have three talented interns, one from ExxonMobil and two from Bank of America, helping us coordinate programs, hosting events and helping with park maintenance.
The first blog of our two-blog series introduces our ExxonMobil intern, Maeli Zapata. Maeli is a student at the University of Houston majoring in Billingual Education and hopes to one day open a non-profit that promotes educational outreach opportunities to children in government housing such as tutoring, field trips and mentoring. When she is not at school or at Discovery Green, you can find her training for her half marathon in October, or exploring new hidden gems in and out of Houston.
Maeli recently shared with us what she is most excited about and what she hopes to achieved through this internship:
Q: What made you apply for this internship/program?
A: Like any other college student I was looking for a summer job, BUT I wanted to find something that had meaning and that carried a weight behind it. As I was scrolling through the career website for UH I saw a posting for Educational Outreach at Discovery Green. I read the description for the program and I knew instantly that I wanted the internship because it would be a great opportunity to be a part of a team that creates intrapersonal relationships in a city as big as Houston.
Q: What do you hope to get out of this internship?
A: I hope to create new ideas and activities in addition to the educational opportunities that Discovery Green already provides. I believe learning is not only for the academic year, but something that is a part of our everyday lives in and out of school and I am confident that I could assist in innovating new educational activities that would be interesting and attract visitors.
Q: What is your favorite memory of Discovery Green since you started your internship?
A: Each day at the office has its own special memory but the one that stands out by far is when it started raining at FUNomenal
. Instead of everyone panicking about possibly getting rained out, everyone came together figured out a plan and worked out a solution. In that moment, everyone flipped on the Plan B switch and instantly we all did the best we could to turn that situation into a positive one. Despite of the rain the event was a success!
Working at Discovery Green you never know what to expect because every day is different but I can say it is nice knowing that regardless of whatever situation that you are placed into you always have a community here that want to support and help you.
Q: What does a typical day look like?
A: I have the opportunity to sit in on meetings and learn the logistics of what it takes to make this park run smoothly. I also get to research how different stories and books presented in the upcoming Toddler Tuesdays can help in child development! Every single person in this office has played a role in helping me get situated at Discovery Green. The group of people that I have the privilege of working with this summer are all extremely helpful and encouraging, work related or not. A day at the office is never dull and I am grateful to be a part of this family. From teaching me how to handle front desk responsibilities to having me shadow them or sit in on meetings I believe that everyone in the office is determined to help each other so we can all work together as efficiently as possible! Like a puzzle, we are all different pieces but we all fit together and make a pretty picture!
I am extremely thankful to be a part of the Discovery Green family. I work with a group of people who are constantly teaching me while also making me laugh. I have learned to have a special appreciation for all the work that they do in order to better serve our community and I hope to have as big an impact as they are already having.
From hosting events to
maintaining the park, the Discovery Green
staff works endlessly to meet Houston’s need for free entertainment in a
beautiful urban space. It’s a team effort that includes the work of our
wonderful summer interns, such as Maeli. This year, Discovery Green worked with Bank of America and their Summer Youth
Internship Program in partnership with SER-Jobs for Progress and ExxonMobil
Community Summer Jobs Program with Volunteer Houston to provide students with
hands on experience.