My program is called Study & Intern in London, so unfortunately it’s not all glamour & travel, but I am still pretty excited about my classes & the work.
I am taking 15 credits with classes including Global Perspectives on Human Rights in Action (political science); Campaigners, Activists & Radicals: Gender and Citizenship in Modern Europe (women’s studies); Analyzing and Exploring the Global City: London (urban studies), and Contemporary Issues through Service Learning: the Social Dynamics of London (technically sociology?).
I’m interning at the Baytree Centre, which is a nonprofit that provides several different services to women and girls in the community including ESOL classes, professional/employment education, after school programming, mentoring/coaching, etc. My coworkers are absolutely amazing and I’m so excited to spend 20 hours a week here. Day one, I walk into the office and there is an emormous inspiration board full of pictures and quotes of incredible female leaders, activists, writers, artists, etc. (didn’t get a picture of it, but it sure made me feel welcome & empowered).
It’s been such a busy week! I haven’t had a free moment to look at the blog between class & interning. Although it’s been a long & busy week, it’s also been a very lovely one! I’m already feeling like a part of the team at my internship and they’re trusting me with a bunch of different projects! I get to teach a weekly dance class for girls 6-11 and a women’s Zumba class! I am so beyond excited for this part of the internship 🙂
On my first day, I got to lead the after-school Maths Club (those poor children having me teach math) which was fun to just dive in right away as a club leader. Yesterday, I also got to mentor for the first time! It was a 13-year-old girl. We painted together, and when one of my coworkers found out it was her birthday she (the coworker) had put together a card for her that we all signed. The girl was so excited to receive it! She gave me a big hug at the end of the day even though we’d just met :’) The amount of positivity, love, and empowerment in that space is out of this world.
I have to work 4 hours from home every week to make sure that I hit the required amount of hours each week, since they aren’t open on Fridays! So today I got to put together a handout for the club leaders for their Heroine Week on Respect. So in the mentoring & after-school programming, Baytree focuses on 4 main personal-development/character education skills for the girls to develop: courage, respect, self-discipline, and kindness. These 4 skills branch of the trunk which is purpose. They use heroines, strong/inspirational women to look up to, to demonstrate these characters and help empower the girls. This week’s are Hermione Granger for the young girls and Christina Lamb for the older girls.
The neighborhood that my internship in is Brixton, which is a really vibrant Afro-Cubano community. I get to do a walking tour of the neighbhorhood as a part of one of my field studies in my Urban Studies class along with the Black Cultural Archives! Very excited to learn more about the historical & cultural context of the community.
I also get to go on so many other cool field trips in my classes! In my Urban Studies class, I also get to go to Museum of London; Greenwich & the National Maritime Museum; tour of street art in Whitechapel, Brick Lane, & Spitalfields; the Victoria & Albert Museum; Tate Modern; and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park! In my Women Studies class, we are going to the National Portrait Gallery, Imperial War Museum, and the Women of the World Festival (which I am so excited for)! In my Human Rights class, we’re going to the Free Word Centre and the Human Rights Department of the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office. How cool is it to get to explore the city as a part of class?
I’ll make sure to make some posts about the field trips. Tomorrow, my roommates and I are going to Stonehenge which was a trip included in the CAPA program costs and on Sunday we’re going on a Beatles Tour – stay tuned for a separate post about those 🙂