Cindy Le ’15, Veronica Gould ’15, Dvivid Trivedi ’17, Katie Swoap ’17
Summer 2014 Experiential Education Internship
The Center for Learning in Action (CLiA) is a department of the college which is committed to connecting students to the local community and building opportunities for students to learn from experiential education. One way that CLiA serves the local community is through an elementary outreach program that produces original science curriculum and provides supplies and student teachers for weekly science lessons. The science curricula are used in four elementary schools in the North Adams and Williamstown school districts and serve students from kindergarten to fifth grade.
This summer, interns and an elementary school teacher under the guidance of two curriculum administrators developed lessons to fit next generation curriculum standards for science, technology, and engineering. The collaborative model of lesson plan writing encouraged a thoughtful exchange of ideas for lessons that wrote original science curricula.
“Working at CLiA is an adventure every day. This team encourages an optimistic energy that is unstoppable. In addition to our usual curriculum work, we were always excited to jump on board with new projects, from volunteering time with Habitat for Humanity to planning intercollegiate Interfaith events. Once, an impromptu ukulele jam session transformed into a promotional song and music video for the local bus company, BRTA. Being able to work in a creative, collaborative environment that values each of our talents and fosters our growth as a team has been indescribable. CLiA is one of the true gems of Williams College.”
–Veronica Gould ’15
“I had a great experience working for the Education Team for CLiA! Dvivid, Cindy, Veronica and I had tons of opportunities to work on developing curriculum, meeting with teachers and practice teaching lessons. During the school year, I teach in an elementary classroom so I found this internship to especially cater to my interests. This summer, I worked on the fourth grade curriculum that I taught last year so I was able to improve the lessons and experiments based on personal teaching experiences. Working with the other interns on the Education Team was a blast— the four of us had a ton of fun collaborating with each other, CLiA staff and colleagues, and elementary classroom teachers. I also loved being on the Williams campus over the summer! The CLiA office was full of interns working on different projects so I had the chance to meet lots of other Williams students.”
–Katie Swoap ’17
“The summer of 2014 has definitely been one of my favorite summers. From the people to the work, this summer has been a lot of opportunities to grow as a person. I am glad I got the opportunity to have this experience because it helped me mature as a person. It made me think creatively for solutions and helped me better understand the art of communication. It also helped me better understand the process of creative collaboration. I learnt that teaching curriculum is only the tip of the iceberg and that there is a lot of work that goes behind the fruition of every single lesson. The opportunity to work on a project that affects such a large part of the community was the most exciting part of the job for me. I’m also glad that I spent the summer in Williamstown because it helped me look at Williamstown as more of the real-world with all its complexities than just as a part of my college’s address. I’m also glad that I got ample opportunities to be a part of the community through various volunteer work programs. I’m also lucky to have worked with some of the most amazing colleagues and staff members who were helpful and dedicated throughout the journey and, moving forward, will now be friends beyond just the summer. Overall, I’m glad that I was able to work at CLiA this summer because it made me more confident in my ability to adapt, create and think logically about problems- skills that will be beneficial throughout my career.”
–Dvivid Trivedi ’17
“I had a great experience interning with CLiA this summer. During the year I work at the elementary school teaching science, helping out in the classroom, and tutoring, so actually writing curriculum that will be implemented next year was an awesome experience to have. Working in an office like CLiA is so great, because not only the Education Team, but many other teams are also working on community-oriented projects that makes for a very fun and friendly work environment. One of the best parts of working at CLiA is the opportunities to explore things outside of your direct work, whether it being writing songs for a BRTA promotional video, drawing logos for Williamstown Elementary Outreach, volunteering at organizations around Williamstown, or just hanging out with other interns, this internship was not only a learning experience, but a lot of fun as well.”
–Cindy Le ’15
“This past summer I had the opportunity to work at the Center for Learning in Action (CLiA). During my first two years of college I had had some exposure to CLiA often participating in projects the office had designed but had a limited knowledge about their work. My job over the summer consisted of updating the list of organizations (support services, healthcare, non-profit, etc.) that are active around the area. Through the course of my work I realized that there are a lot of organizations that are active around this area, although I was not aware of the vast majority of them. This job helped me understand better the outreach efforts around the Berkshires, it also allowed me to practice making first contact with a lot of these organizations as well as going through vast amounts of information. The best part of the experience however was the opportunity to work with a group of students interns that were warm, caring, hard-working, diverse and fun. I am grateful of meeting many people I would probably not have met otherwise. This job gave me tools that will be helpful for creating independent outreach and volunteering efforts in the future and allowed me to meet and interact with a group of amazing individuals.”
–Emmanuel Ocampo ’16, CLiA Summer Intern
Center for Learning in Action Summer Interns Video: